Methods for Sustainable Product Development

Course Objectives

The purpose of this course is for the advanced student to gain theoretical understanding of product-service system development methods and tools both in general and to support a full socio-ecological sustainability perspective, as well as suitable applications. Students will have practical experience in using such methods and tools to real products-services allowing the students to have a basis for applying supplementary methods and tools as necessary.

Course Contents

  • Overview of Product Development: A description of general processes and theories on the development of products and services.
  • Methods for Eco-Design and Sustainable Product Development (SPD): State-of-practice in industry and state-of-art in research regarding methods and tools, and the individual strengths and limitations of these will be considered from different perspectives like full sustainability, time, cost, complexity, etc.
  • Applications of the Methods for Sustainable Product Development: Application of the methods from module 1 and module 2.

Aims and learning outcomes

On completion of the course the student will be able to:

  • Analyze product development processes from a generic stage-gate process (e.g. in companies and in theory)
  • Comprehensively describe different tools and concepts relevant to Eco-design and SPD and demonstrate the ability to apply the SSD framework to describe how these tools and concepts are best utilized.
  • Relate to people now practicing such methods and tools by knowing key terms, roles, and approaches
  • Describe criteria for selecting and assessing SPD tools depending on the context
  • Apply the above to identify sustainability challenges in a product design and recommend suitable solutions to those challenges

Learning & Teaching

This course is offered to graduate-level students of engineering, industrial economy, industrial design, or equivalent.  Through, lectures, site visits, workshops, assigned readings and assignments students will gain an understanding of the course content. Students will complete assignments on an individual or small group basis, and will share his/her learning with others through his/her written documents, group work and presentations. There will be a mid-term written examination and a final project. The course will be provided in English.

Course responsible and examiner

PhD Sophie Hallstedt

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