Meeting Environmental Certification in Design: A Toolkit Facilitating the Process of Eco-Labelling through LCA for Electronic Products

By Hala Zohbi and Lorenzo Imbesi.

Published by The International Journal of Designed Objects

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Personal computers (PCs) significantly contribute to e-waste. This study clarifies how life-cycle assessment (LCA) tools can be used to meet eco-label criteria. The research finds that designers need a better understanding of their role in meeting eco-label criteria and that they have a significant role in developing environmentally friendly PCs. The research analyzed the current LCA tools and a toolkit was developed that would facilitate the process for PC designers to decide on an LCA tool that would help meet certain eco-label criteria and it validated the importance and value of the toolkit for designers. Four telephone interviews, nine critical reviews, one online survey, and an interactive workshop were conducted to better understand how to help designers select an LCA tool. The interviews and critical reviews were used to gather the information to be used in the toolkit that would explain the differences among eco-labels for PCs and the differences among six LCA tools. The survey and workshop verified the effectiveness, importance, and value of this toolkit. This research would provide a method to help designers develop a larger number of certified products, in hopes of reducing the amount of e-waste caused by PCs and meet their rising consumer demand.

Keywords: Environmental Certifications, Sustainability, Life-cycle Assessment

The International Journal of Designed Objects, Volume 9, Issue 2, June 2015, pp.1-16. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 925.553KB).

Hala Zohbi

Master's Graduate, School of Industrial Design, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Dr. Lorenzo Imbesi

Associate Professor, Theories of Design, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada