Design for Sustainability: A Sourcebook of Integrated, Eco-logical Solutions

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With radical and innovative design solutions, everyone could be living in buildings and settlements that are more like gardens than cargo containers, and that purify air and water, generate energy, treat sewage and produce food - at lower cost. Birkeland introduces systems design thinking that cuts across academic and professional boundaries and the divide between social and physical sciences to move towards a transdiciplinary approach to environmental and social problem-solving. This sourcebook is useful for teaching, as each topic within the field of environmental management and social change has pairs of short readings providing diverse perspectives to compare, contrast and debate. Design for Sustainability presents examples of integrated systems design based on ecological principles and concepts and drawn from the foremost designers in the fields of industrial design, materials, housing design, urban planning and transport, landscape and permaculture, and energy and resource management.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Design for Sustainability has a swathe of solutions to pollution, waste and other ills'
New Scientist

'An invaluable reference and teaching resource'

'Design for Sustainability is an inspiring, radical and detailed collection of the eco-solutions that can be applied to a range of design challenges... [an] invaluable reference'
World Environment Magazine

International Network for Traditional Building
Part theoretical textbook, part manual, this sourcebook provides a valuable point of reference for all those striving to achieve a greater sustainability in their design and development work...In reflecting the complexity and inter-disciplinary skills and expertise that need to be mustered to actively address issues of sustainable design the book is packed with tables, lists of indicators, principles, checklists and references that lead the reader on through each topic. The structure of the book, true to the nature of a sourcebook, favours regular reference and referral on specific topics rather than a single 'linear' cover-to-cover read. "Design for Sustainability" should enjoy a long shelf life. It makes a valuable contribution in advancing the practice of sustainable design from a periphery activity to a core discipline.
Environmental Awareness
an inspiring, radical and detailed collection of the eco-solutions that can be applied to a range of design challenges ... an invaluable reference and teaching resource for practitioners and academics.
From The Critics
Birkeland (science and design, U. of Canberra), a former San Francisco city planner and environmental attorney, provides for education in alternative systems design for the built environment. She treats such concepts as the sustainable landscape, pollution prevention by design, values-imbued permaculture, and low impact housing with bamboo, strawbale, even hemp. Includes chapter questions, projects, progress indicator checklists, and a glossary. Distributed in the US by Stylus. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781853839009
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 4/28/2002
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 8.40 (w) x 10.50 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Janis Birkeland was an artist and architect before becoming an urban designer and city planner with the City of San Francisco. She later became an attorney, with a focus on environmental law and planning. Dr Birkeland is presently consulting in the area of urban and regional planning, and teaches in the Division of Science and Design at the University of Canberra.

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Table of Contents

Part I: Designing Eco-solutions
• Education for Eco-innovation
• The Centrality of Design
• Green Philosophy
• Responsible Design
• Part II: The Concepts of Growth and Waste
• Limits to Growth and Design of Settlements
• Redefining Progress
• Designing Waste
• Designing for Durability
• Part III: Industrial, Urban and Construction Ecology
• Industrial Ecology
• Urban Ecology
• Construction Ecology
• Pollution Prevention by Design
• Part IV: Design within Complex Social Systems
• Complexity and the Urban Environment
• Unified Human Community Ecology
• The Bionic Method in Industrial Design
• Green Theory in the Construction Fields
• Part V: Permaculture and Landscape Design
• Permaculture and Design Education
• The Sustainable Landscape
• Place, Community Values and Planning
• Playgardens and Community Development
• Part VI: Values Embodied in and Reinforced by Design
• Urban Forms and the Dominant Paradigm
• Models of Ecological Housing
• Marketing-led Design
• Gender and Product Semantics
• Part VII: Design for Community Building and Health
• ESD and 'Sense of Community'
• Sustainability and Aboriginal Housing
• Indoor Air Quality in Housing
• Beyond the Chemical Barrier
• Part VIII: Productivity, Land and Transport Efficiency
• Greening the Workplace
• Sustainable Personal Urban Transport
• From Sub-urbanism to Eco-cities
• Density, Environment and the City
• Part IX: Design with Less Energy Materials and Waste
• Living Technologies
• Housing Wastewater Solutions
• Autonomous Servicing
• Timber Waste Minimisation by Design. Part X: Low-impact Housing Design and Materials
• Earth Building
• Strawbale Construction
• Bamboo as a Building Resource
• Hemp Architecture
• Part XI: Construction and Environmental Regulation
• Legislative Environmental Controls
• Economic Instruments
• Building Codes and Sustainability
• Assessing Building Materials
• Part XII: Planning and Project Assessment
• Planning for Ecological Sustainability
• Bioregional Planning
• Environmental Management Tools
• Limits of Environmental Impact Assessment
• Glossary
• Bibliography
• Index

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