Dishsoap for clean water: how the design of everyday objects can promote happiness

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Title: Dishsoap for clean water: how the design of everyday objects can promote happiness
Author: Matychak, Xanthe
Abstract: This project began with the question: What keeps us from achieving sustainable happiness, happiness for ourselves and future generations? I have chosen to focus on the citizen/consumer conflict which occurs when our consumer choices are incongruous with our moral obligations to society. This conflict is a consequence of the market systems that are in place and consumers’ lack of a critical understanding of these systems. Thus, with this project, I am attempting to make these systems more transparent. Looking at economic approaches like price adjustment and awareness-raising strategies I have focused on the latter. Drawing from the history of semiotics and experiential pedagogy, I applied pedagogical principles to an everyday consumer product, in this case dish soap, in order to help consumers understand, through the use of the product, the product’s ecological benefits and how their own consumer choices affect environmental health. The name of the emerging product is Clean: dish soap for clean water.
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Date: 2007-08

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