What might everyday life be like in a sustainable society? How do you
take care of yourself and other people? How do you work, study, move
around? How do you cultivate a network of personal and social relationships
and create an undistorted relationship with the environment?
What do the sustainable societies we are able to imagine today have in
common? How wide a range of options do we have open to us on the
basis of these common elements?
Sustainable Everyday offers us a state-of-the-art picture based on the
answers we are in a position to give to these questions today. It goes on
to outline possible scenarios and workable alternatives applicable in the
wide, though not all inclusive, field of the everyday dimension of existence
(the world as we, its inhabitants, see it). Particular reference is made
to the urban environment (whether historical cities or the up-and-coming
new conurbations). It deals with the future of our domestic lives,
but it does so in a very different perspective from the many examples of
“future homes” we are used to imagining. The focus is not on the technology
which is to reshape traditional functions, but rather on emerging
“living strategies” which are becoming possible and, at least for some,
desirable today; different ways of living that arise more from social
and systemic innovation than from technological development.
The book, which is also the catalogue for an exhibition of the same name,
is the result of an international research programme and a series
of 15 design workshops in 10 different countries. They lay out a detailed
scenario of sustainable everyday life: a scenario which sets limits
and opens possibilities; which raises new questions, offers new solutions
and reveals possible, different ways of living. It leaves the reader,
and the visitor to the exhibition, space to form his own opinion and
make his own choices.
Sustainable Everyday talks about the future using the tools of design:
design which, in this case, does not prefigure tomorrow but takes part
in shaping it.