Future Skills of Design for Sustainability: An Awareness-Based Co-Creation Approach

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Our inner, invisible dimension consisting of our values, mental models and worldviews, has been identified as a significant leverage point for transformational change, as it brings to life our actions. Accordingly, the inner dimension of sustainability has a major role in transitioning towards desirable and sustainable futures. This paper focuses on exploring what kind of methods and competences are needed to access and work with the inner dimension as part of collaborative design practices aiming for sustainable and deep change. Thus, a lesser researched, alternative perspective to design discourse, the awareness-based co-creation approach is highlighted as a potential and emerging direction for design for sustainability. By thinking across: (1) literature findings of the concept of inner dimension of sustainability; (2) existing knowledge of awareness-based transformation approaches and (3) results of an experimental case study done in the context of nature tourism, it was recognized that more examples are needed on how to enable, promote and capture participants’ transformative experiences. Finally, the argument is made that awareness-based competencies should be considered as essential future skills and competences of design for sustainability.
Original languageEnglish
Article number5247
Number of pages24
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 25 Sep 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • awareness-based approach
  • inner dimension of sustainability
  • future skills
  • mental models
  • key competences for sustainability
  • co-design
  • design for sustainability

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