News: CRR Targets Tomorrow's Business & Product Design Leaders
MSc students from the 'Innovation and Design for Sustainability' (I&DS) course at Cranfield University recently received an insight into how they can incorporate product and process design strategies to increase the reuse of products at end of life.
Friday, 1st February 2008
The CRR, in a quest to influence the next generation of business and design leaders to adopt remanufacture and reuse where appropriate, delivered a two-part module to the I&DS students as part of the CRR's workplan, funded through Defra's BREW programme. Remanufacturing is the process of taking end-of-life equipment back to as-new condition with a warranty to match. Professor Steve Evans, course leader at Cranfield said "Remanufacturing and reuse complements the Whole Systems Design module that we teach at Cranfield. To have external representatives reinforcing the messages that we are teaching here will underline the importance of improving business resource efficiency in order to achieve a sustainable economy in the UK." The module consists of a series of short lectures with interactive sessions to stimulate ideas on the design of products and systems to enable reuse at end of life, delivered by CRR consultants David Parker, Fiona Kelday. Also involved was Dr Andrew King, Associate of the CRR and Senior Lecturer at the University of Bristol. This is the third 'trial' session of the Product and Process Design module. Previously MSc Advanced Technology Management students at the University of Wolverhampton took part in a workshop, "A Remanufacturing Design Primer", in order to challenge to their thinking.
Course Director at the University of Wolverhampton Dr Chike Oduoza said �We�ve been trying to incorporate this thinking for some time, but the CRR managed to crystallise the concepts simply and clearly with a mix of case studies and hands-on redesign tasks based on Sony�s PS2. We�re very pleased with their approach and the outcomes.� The CRR is developing the materials further into an educational pack for teachers and lecturers from A to MBA level who wish to include all or parts of the module into their lesson plans. The CRR can provide planning and delivery support to educational institutions who wish to use the materials. If you are a member of an academic body and are interested in this then please contact us. Commenting on the long-term objectives for implementing resource efficiency into education, Fiona feels optimistic about the impact and appetite for such courses: �There�s an awful lot of untapped creativity that can be applied to design. Businesses are just beginning to realise the profit, carbon footprint and PR potential of remanufacturing and reuse, but all too often, poor product design inhibits the possibility for strategies to enable this to be applied. We want to change that.� Momentum is gathering as the word spreads about the efforts of the CRR and other universities are now registering interest in the product and process design course, with more sessions due to be delivered over the course of 2008.