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Application of Patina for Product Sustainability

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Yeon H. HWANG, Jai KIM, Zoe KANG and Song HWANG


Affluence in the mass production-mass consumption era has resulted in the
fast consumption of products. Fast consumption leads to product waste with
short life cycles, and these short life cycles have raised environmental
concerns. Sustainable design has thus emerged to cope with these
environmental challenges. Despite the concerted efforts in sustainable design
and, further, sustainable consumption, the product life cycle has remained
short; products have recently been short lived long before their due life cycles.
These short life cycles at least partly hinge on the durability of the products’
relationship with their users. This study is an attempt to address sustainable
consumption by forming ongoing relationships between users/consumers and
products. To enable products to have a longer life cycle, we are proposing the
concept of patina in product/product-service design. Patina enables a product
to be more valuable to its user as time goes by. We utilize a case study as a
method to explore the concept and the applications of patina in design.
Various cases dealing with patina have been analyzed. Based on the above
analysis, we suggest various types of patina and the implications drawn from
each type of patina.The understanding and application of patina can help to
prolong the life of a product and is a critical element for designing a
sustainable product.


PUBLISHED: Proceedings from the The 19th DMI: Academic Design Management Conference, 2014


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