So how should a city’s waste management options be designed?
Labels such as those of UCT’s campus receptacles and Hoan Kiem Lake’s bins would communicate the importance of both recycling and reducing one’s waste. The placement of these ideal designed options would consider where disposer traffic was likely to be highest and what waste would be generated based on activities occurring. The ideal design would also be replicated through a given urban space in order to build coherence. Users would get used to seeing the same waste options and use them correctly, easier, and more often than they would where waste options differed across the city.
In this way design would play a role in helping to achieve the reduction of waste’s negative impacts and would become an enabling structure and effective mediator in the management of waste. Design might not be the most important actor in environmental issues such as waste and neither can it guarantee that desirable goals will be met, but what it can do is to actively promote these goals.
Want to find out how I arrived at these conclusions? Read my full post on This Big City