Open Conference Systems, Catac 2016

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DESIGN AS REGULATION: TOWARDS A REGULATORY ECOLOGY OF THE MOBILE PHONE
Maja van der Velden

Last modified: 2016-06-11

Abstract


Mobile phones have become one of the most unsustainable consumer goods. New initiatives, such as Fairphone and Puzzelphone, are working on a more sustainable mobile phone design. This paper introduces the notion of lifecycle thinking to take sustainability beyond the product towards the larger product-system. Social and environmental sustainability needs to be addressed in the whole lifecycle of the mobile phone. This paper explores the opportunities and limitations of design as regulation. The relational concepts of script and affordance help to provide a non-deterministic account of design as regulation. The particular case of the Fairphone 2, a smartphone based on social and environmental values, will be discussed to investigate design as regulation. The notions of regulatory ecology and regulatory patching are introduced as tools to explore opportunities for constructing a more desirable regulatory regime.

Keywords


affordances, Fairphone, lifecycle, regulatory ecology, script

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