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Title: Design to let things go : towards an understanding of user detachment from hibernating or accumulated objects at end of use and the promotion of object longevity and material circulation through care practice
Author: Choi, Yoon Jung
ISNI:       0000 0004 8510 908X
Awarding Body: Royal College of Art
Current Institution: Royal College of Art
Date of Award: 2020
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This thesis explores the feasibility of adapting and applying the philosophy and theory of care-giving in nursing practice to the care of possessions, and whether such application has value in design processes for extending the lifespan of objects, to promote sustainable disposal behaviour. Designing for user detachment from hibernating or accumulated objects at end of use offers the potential for extending an object’s lifespan and reducing environmental impact. Care-giving behaviour towards objects includes maintaining and repairing them, but also letting them go, and has potential implications for sustainable design. The communicable knowledge is gathered under the concept of ‘Carative factors (love and charity and the motive of caring for all)’, in the form of a design toolkit, called the Carative Factors Inspirational Toolkit. The Toolkit is designed to provide a better understanding of the user’s relationship with hibernating or accumulated objects at end of use, and their responsible and decisive disposal, for designers, in order to create products, services and an environment that will influence users’ possession and sustainable disposal behaviour. Through exploratory workshops and design projects in which participants used the Toolkit to generate concepts, the Toolkit was developed and evaluated. This study begins by defining the need to understand and consider the after-use system during design processes and to identify a need for a user-object detachment guide for designers. It analyses the relationship between users and the hibernating or accumulated object at end of use, and introduces a Toolkit based on four motivational carative factors, for which insights were taken from nursing practice, behavioural change and interviews. Through the action research processes of iterative developments and evaluations involving a workshop method with designers in specific industry sectors, these insights are integrated into a Toolkit for designers. The validation and evaluation is made through analysis of the feedback from Toolkit users in different design contexts.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: W200 Design studies ; W290 Design studies not elsewhere classified