Background

A shared opinion has been evolving in contemporary times that sustainable development requires a system discontinuity. In other words, radical changes are  needed in the way we produce, consume and socially interact. These changes will be not only technical, but also social and ethical.The shared opinion also is that action should be taken now.

Moreover, we understand that important contributions to change are directly linked to the role of the design. However, the design community as a whole (not as single virtuous persons or institutions) is not yet the proactive and diffused agent it could potentially  be.

We are entering an era of change that will contribute in fundamental ways to the development of sustainable consumption and production systems. An urgent  challenge we are facing is to consolidate and widely diffuse a coherent design knowledge-base, as well as salient criteria, methods and tools. This challenge  is something that the design learning community as a whole must come to terms with in an arena that is increasingly interconnected and based on knowledge- sharing.