Touchpoint: A Foundation for Sustainable Product Development

Much has been written on the subject of sustainable development and the urgent need for society to understand and address human impacts on socio-ecological systems. Emerging from this broad context, the concept of sustainable product development (SPD) represents an important strategy to steer human society towards sustainability. This thesis investigates strategies for integrating sustainability concepts, through organisational learning and stakeholder management, into a new product development tool entitled ‘Touchpoint’. Built on prior research, specifically Methods for Sustainable Product Development(MSPD) and Templates for Sustainable Product Development (TSPD), this could help to eliminate product development approaches that lead to reductionism and ensure that SPD is adopted rapidly and widely.

Author: Ron Durgin, Scott Grierson

Source: Blekinge Institute of Technology

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1 Introduction
1.1 The Scale and Urgency of SPD
1.2 The Current State of Products and Production
1.3 Working towards SPD
1.4 Purpose
1.5 Scope and Limitations
1.6 Research Questions
2 Methods
2.1 Logic and Inference
2.2 Literature Review
2.3 Structured Interviews
2.4 Field Testing
3 Results
3.1 Literature Review: Framing Tools and Concepts
3.1.1 The Five-level model, Backcasting and ABCD
3.1.2 MSPD
3.1.3 TSPD: Matsushita Study
3.1.4 Structural and Theoretical Comparison of MSPD & TSPD
3.2 Expert Opinion on Product Development
3.2.1 Macpac: Preliminary Findings
3.2.2 Structured Interviews
3.3 Touchpoint Development and Evaluation
3.3.1 Design
3.3.2 Modules
3.3.3 Evaluation
4 Discussion
4.1 Beginning With The End in Mind
4.1.1 Life Cycle Thinking
4.2 Touchpoint: Key Concepts
4.2.1 Applied Organisational Learning
4.2.2 Stakeholder Management
4.2.3 Module Development
4.3 TSPD Reflections
4.4 Commercial Realities, Pressures & Drivers
4.4.1 Service vs. Sales
4.4.2 The Role of the Consumer
4.5 Macpac & The OREA Industry
5 Conclusions and Further Study
6 References
Appendix A: Web Log (Blog)
Appendix B: Product Development Interviews
Appendix C: Touchpoint Draft

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