Designing for Circularity—Addressing Product Design, Consumption Practices and Resource Flows in Domestic Kitchens
Journal article, 2020
Both the daily use and renewal of kitchens significantly contribute to the overall environmental impact of domestic buildings. To identify design implications related to circular consumption in domestic kitchens, 20 household interviews and one focus group session were performed, investigating how kitchens are used and transformed to meet households’ wants and needs. This study determined that daily kitchen resource use is greatly affected by kitchen design and that typical kitchen design generally does not promote sustainable resource use. Key factors that support minimization of resource use in the kitchen are the availability and planning of storage and workspaces. Furthermore, kitchens should be equipped with functions that enable households to use energy and water efficiently. Regarding kitchen renewal, various motivations that may initiate kitchen renovations can be summarised as follows: (1) Functional demands and changing needs, (2) aesthetic demands and changing trends, (3) obsolescence due to wear, and (4) linkage to another home renovation. This article concludes that a combination of design strategies is needed to reach a higher level of kitchen circularity. Moreover, these design strategies must be accompanied by circular business models and efforts to increase awareness of the environmental impact related to activities in and involving the kitchen.
circular product design
product lifetime extension