This video gives you an overview of hyperthinking, a concept created to help individuals adapt to the age of networks. More on the concept and book on hyperthinking can be found at www.hyperthinking.net
Jesús Azogue, our Creative Director here at ZN, is one of those truly creative types that you rarely get to meet. Dynamic in nature, he juggles his daily work, his job as Master’s teacher in Madrid, and his own exhibitions and projects. Nourished by these experiences, his mind is continuously filled with new ideas. To experience the depth of his imagination, just spend an hour in a brainstorming session with him and you’ll see what I mean!
I asked him about a project that he had on exhibit last December at Instituto Cervantes – the e-Tree. From conceptualization to the actual realisation, Jesús told me the e-Tree story…
Cloud-computing and ICT technology as such has changed our society. A development of our Web2.0 culture is just one small part of the impact. The way we communicate, the way we interact, the tools we use.
Even if we often are not aware of the environmental impacts of our actions – it is evident, that our changed behavior with the availability of computing tools and new ways to interact has an impact on the environment.
Nothing to be afraid of – there are positive and negative impacts: Did you know that a modern laptop consumes less energy than an old light bulb?
As Jorge Zapico who is currently researching the intersections of ICT and Sustainability at the Centre for Sustainable Communications in Stockholm points out correctly, that there are many ways in which we can enhance the positive impacts. For example an open source approach to sharing information, using the net to mobilize the environmental movement and taking advantage of technologies that make our life more (energy) efficient.
Which does not mean we should neglect the negative ones like the hidden hardware in many data centers that is running our beloved Internet cloud (slide 13). Enjoy Jorge’s presentation on this topic:
Our team has just recently launched a website on Carbon Aware Travel Choice - a project that is co-financed by the European Union under the 7th Framework Programme for Research.
CATCH brings together government officials, scientists and transport experts of cities in Europe and beyond to communicate on Transport issues. The project specifically aims to support cities to encourage climate-friendly decision-making among their citizens, and to showcase learnings from good and bad examples.
As part of the project the CATCH team is developing an online knowledge engine that will help provide further details on carbon emissions which will also be very interesting tool for legislators on Carbon Emissions aiming to increase awareness of the environmental impacts of mobility, map out potential solutions to their management and to enable travelers to make informed climate-friendly travel choices.
The site includes Web2.0 tools like Youtube channel & Twitter and provides an interactive overview on Stakeholder opinions and current developments around Carbon legislation, climate facts and involvement of local authorities on this issue.
No one really seems to have grasped what sustainability really stands for. One of those concepts that is so broad that anything could fit in and so complex that noone really knows how to transform it into something practical.
Especially corporates seem to be struggling in making sense of it and putting the topic in a context that speaks to the individual, to management and serves the company purpose. Let’s be honest here – it’s a real challenge. There’s no off-the-shelf solution on how to turn a successful corpoate business into a successful sustainable one. And it’s surely not about the process but much more about the indivudual that drives change in the organization.
One of our contacts from EUROPEN recommended this video which reflects in a viral – web friendly way the purpose of packaging.
When it comes to discussing sustainability and product development, packaging is often seen as an easy target for policy makers. There’s a public perception that packaging equals waste. So the more packaging, the more waste is being created. Only few people take into account that packaging also prevents waste and keeps the product safe in a purposeful way (if designed smartly).
Have a look at the video clip below developed by Elipso (the French plastic & flexible packaging association) that addresses this topic.
This is a cross post from Ideaplants.org.
I just read an article on China Daily in which Marcos Fava Neves, professor of strategic planning and food chains at the School of Economics and Business, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, proposes to add another dimension to the model of sustainabiltiy. Normally we consider the economic, social and environmental perspective when assessing sustainability. Marcos Fava Neves proposes to add in the context of organizations that struggle to implement this concept as part of their planning and operations pro-activeness as an additional measure.
When reading the article I started wondering whether pro-activeness is really what we are missing. Companies do most of the time act in different ways. In my eyes the issue is rather a lack of ownership and leadership in the space of sustainability. In a traditional company structure sustainability is not assigned to any specific department and therefore it is unclear who should be taking the lead on this.
It’s not just about what you do but also about how you link individual activites. Ideally an organization has an overall sustainability strategy and links activites to this strategy with the aim to create one real and coherent sustainability story. Transparency and involvement of internal and external stakeholders is key here. This involves HR, marketing, business development, and many other divisions.
Getting everyone on board requires not just pro-activeness but also smart leadership.
Cradle to cradle is giving the word ‘design’ a deeper meaning. Rather than looking at a visual aspect, it is about designing a product by keeping in mind the entire product life cycle.
We live in a system that is designed based on common values we had back in times of the industrial revolution. Times where people thought environmental resources would last forever and people would only benefit from the improved production models… It only makes sense that environment was not a priority back then.
Looking at products & services that were designed following the very same model today we should ask ourselves the question: What is the point in improving a product that is not good in the first place?
The point is not necessarily that we need to stop completely what we are doing right now. It’s more about rethinking the things we are right now and adapting it to a new model that keeps in mind all aspects of sustainability.
Rather than putting economic impact in the centre of discussion, William McDonough is putting a slightly different aspect in the middle of the thinking he does with every product he designs:
How do we love all the children of all species for all time?