Next Article in Journal
A Summary on the Special Issue “Sustainability of Groundwater”
Previous Article in Journal
Introduction to Special Issue on New Studies in EROI (Energy Return on Investment)
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Sustainability 2011, 3(10), 1778-1791;

Representation of Ecodesign Practice: International Comparison of Industrial Design Consultancies

Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, Level 11, UTS Building 10, 235 Jones Street, Ultimo NSW 2007, Australia
Industrial Design Program, Faculty of Built Environment, University of New South Wales, Sydney NSW 2052, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 August 2011 / Revised: 14 September 2011 / Accepted: 15 September 2011 / Published: 10 October 2011
Full-Text   |   PDF [330 KB, uploaded 24 February 2015]


Ecodesign offers significant potential to reduce the environmental impacts of products. Whilst some integration of environmental considerations into design occurs in progressive companies when engineering the product, this only represents a small share of the possible design interventions to improve the environmental performance of products. For example, developing new product concepts to fulfill needs in a less environmentally harmful way and considering user related aspects offers a large, currently under-realized potential. This paper identifies industrial design (ID) consultancies as potential agents to tackle this issue on a strategic and operational basis. The extent to which this potential is currently applied was assessed by conducting a content analysis of websites of ID consultancies in Australia, China, and Germany. How ID consultancies represent their ecodesign practice is country-specific. Despite the differences, some ID consultancies in all countries announce and/or show the capability to develop completely new concepts and to influence user related factors to improve environmental performance. This shows their potential to address current shortcomings in ecodesign practice. As ID consultancies embracing that potential still are a minority, further research should be directed to a deeper examination of barriers and stimuli for ID consultancies to take up ecodesign. View Full-Text
Keywords: ecodesign practice; industrial design; design consultancies ecodesign practice; industrial design; design consultancies
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

Supplementary material


Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Behrisch, J.; Ramirez, M.; Giurco, D. Representation of Ecodesign Practice: International Comparison of Industrial Design Consultancies. Sustainability 2011, 3, 1778-1791.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Sustainability EISSN 2071-1050 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top