The spread of eco-design activity through industry has not necessarily resulted from a systematic assessment of the potential benefits. For example, eco-design principles have been adopted (and developed) by organisations or individuals who feel an increased environmental or social responsibility, or designers who find an aesthetic resonance with ecology. Alternatively, eco-design principles are adopted as a means of reducing production costs or meeting new legislation. Industries such as electronics, IT and domestic appliance industries already integrate environmental issues in their design culture and manufacturing operations whilst other industries such as construction are still aligning themselves with issues of sustainability. Certain sectors have much potential to benefit from the application of eco-design principles. It is suggested here that indicators of the potential for reducing environmental impact through eco-design could be found in publicly available aggregated data for industry spending and environmental impact. A systematic characterisation of UK industry sectors according to the potential benefits associated with application of eco-design principles could be instrumental in directing future eco-design research, development and application in industry. Results are presented for the characterisation of several industry sectors, conclusions about the methodology and suggestions for further work are made.
|Title of host publication||Business strategy and the Environment conference|
|Publication status||Published - 2000|