(Im)Material : a qualitative study on sustainable materials for design through a comparative review of leather and its modern alternatives
Author(s)Qua, Frances Jillian S.(Frances Jillian SyCip)
Qualitative study on sustainable materials for design through a comparative review of leather and its modern alternatives
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Engineering and Management Program.
System Design and Management Program.
Matthew S. Kressy and Christine M. Ortiz.
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This study explores the broader questions and implications involved in selecting sustainable materials for designing everyday products for consumers, through a qualitative review of leather and new modern alternatives. Leather is a resilient material that has been used for thousands of years. However, the processes involved in producing the material on a mass scale create adverse environmental and social impact when not carefully managed and considered. Although the modern leather alternatives may have comparatively smaller environmental footprints, designing a sustainable product may not be as simple as replacing one material for another and involves complex value judgements amongst industry players and consumers. This, therefore, brings up questions about what is material or immaterial when it comes to sustainable design decisions, and emphasizes the need for systemic thinking across the value chain in order to have a truly meaningful attempt towards designing for environmental, social and economic sustainability.
Thesis: S.M. in Engineering and Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, System Design and Management Program, 2019Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Engineering and Management Program; System Design and Management Program
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Engineering and Management Program., System Design and Management Program.