Changing consumer behaviour into a more sustainable design

Changing consumer behaviour into a more sustainable design

18 July 2014 by Rida Daher

One of the fundamental things we learn in Economics is the fact that we can never go against a market. Markets drive consumerism and the latter is driven by consumers which are influenced by culture and behaviour. So if we want a more sustainable market, which knot should we target? The consumer himself and his constant needs for upgrades, the culture and trends within the market, or simply what the market has to offer?

Let’s take the example of our society. We work, get paid, consume and buy products and then we become satisfied. Our thirst is driven by a set behaviour to adapt to the latest market trends and products. So can we change how we consume? Should we work on behavioural patterns that could solve this enigma and lead to a sustainable society? The answer might be no.

If we can afford the excess consumption then why change our behaviour if it makes us feel good? Working on behavioural patterns has been under so much scrutiny for the past few years. Some classify this work as unethical; for it targets the psych of each and every one of us. So how do we solve this?

Plan B could be changing the design. By that we mean changing how a product is delivered and making that product sustainable. Saturating the market with ‘’healthy choices’’ that won’t harm our planet if mass production increases, is therefore an obvious solution. By changing the mould, we change the design; we change the product, transform the market and eventually reach for the consumer. BUT this doesn’t solve our ever increasing disposal of goods. We delivered a sustainable design but how do we reduce our consumption? Do we need to? How do we target the increasing problem of waste? And who will pay the price? Our planet or us?

 

Find out more in a special research conducted by SustainIt. Follow us on twitter here and keep an eye out when we announce the project.

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