Ecological design has the following concerns:
- Reducing resource consumption and impacts on natural ecocystems by human activities.
- Creating products and environments that are more people friendly.
It sets out to achieve these goals by designing products that:
- use less materials, energy and water to construct and operate.
- are easy to assemble, maintain and later recycle.
- have longer service lives because they are durable, easy to upgrade, and satisfy multiple needs.
- are easy to use.
- take advantage of their context.
Ecological design combines traditional design principles with the latest technological developments. If implemented widely, it could help us face the challenge of tightening resource limits and the need to live cooperative with nature.
Biomimicry - Nature provides many examples of living cooperatively on Earth, which we can follow.
Industrial Ecology - Industrial processes can be linked so that one process makes use of the by-products of another that would otherwise go to waste.
Lean Manufacturing - The flow of materials within a factory can be organised to reduce energy and resource consumption and increase worker productivity.
Urban Ecology Articles
Ecological Building Design
Ecological Design: Some Questions and Answers. Paul Downton and Michelle Breton. Urban Ecology Australia. 2003. If we do not succeed in getting the processes of developing our built environments to fit the cycles and processes of nature then, ultimately, we will so damage the ecology that supports us that our civilisation will fail.
Ecological Building Design
Building Ecology. Peter Graham. Building professionals who are ecologically literate and environmentally aware are the vanguard of innovation in the building industry. They are not only pioneering new building technologies and designs, they are also profoundly changing the economics of the industry so that it enhances rather than damages ecosystems.
Principles of Ecodesign. The Yellow House. EcoDesign principles for houses. Five core ideas in ecological building design: working with the sun, thermal mass, stack effect (convection), thermal zoning, embodied energy.
Ecological Product Design
Introduction to EcoRedesign. RMIT - Centre for Design. Products which are more energy-efficient, which reduce water consumption, decrease pollution and reduce end-of-life waste, now have a clear competitive edge in the market [due to increasing global demand for environmental quality].
Product Innovation The Green Advantage - An introduction to design for environment for Australian business. Environment. Australia. 2001.4. For a typical product 70% of the cost of development, manufacture and use of is determined in its design phase. By integrating environmental considerations into the upfront product design, a company can increase efficiency, reduce waste of materials and energy, and reduce costs.
Ecological Website Design
Ecological Design Moves Online. Jeffrey Veen. Webmonkey. 1998. Anticipating users' needs is an obvious first step to effective Web design. Build sites that are easy to use, that are simple to understand, and that work for your audience rather than against it.