In scenarios of sustainable consumption, where people consume and build significantly less, what will be left for designers to do?

“A lot” is the answer in a new book by Ann Thorpe, Architecture & Design versus Consumerism: how design activism confronts growth published by Earthscan/Routledge (available July 2012 in the UK, September in the US.)

Packed with examples and illustrations, the book explores how architecture & design can help us transition from a system that prioritizes consumerism and economic growth to one that addresses real wellbeing, for example:

  • how economic growth and consumerism shape and are shaped by the professions of architecture, product, and landscape design
  • four central challenges of consumerism that designers face and how some designers are addressing them.
  • five specific methods that designers use in calling for social change and how the methods have influence

The book also includes sections on the question of measuring social impact, financing of activist practices, and speculation on design’s role in a “post-growth” society. Have a closer look.

Ready to order?

Choose from Routledge orders paperback or ebook, or paperback or kindle edition