Production-Consumption system is a complex social and technological system in which socio-culturally and economically available natural resources are transformed into a supply of products, services and public goods that responds (or atleast is supposed to respond) to a demand of well-beginning the given society. It is all a great interactive network among people (consumers), organisations (public, private) and territorial resources (natural and social capital).
There are various ways in which the effects based on an impact of exchanging substances between nature and this production-consumption system can be measured or reduced. With regard to products, there are two obvious things that can be changed. First, the physical artefacts themselves can be changed, and second, the way that products are managed (including how they are used) over their life cycles can be changed. For the former, more efficiency can be pursued, e.g. material reduction and energy optimization. The movement in industry is now toward the design of artefacts and services together – often referred to as product-service systems (PSS) – and presents an opportunity for these two to be considered and improved in tandem . Sustainable Design Strategies with respect to PSS involves either of the following two interventions:
Companies operate in a rapidly changing world in which customer needs and wants are not fixed and industry faces increasing competition due to open markets and globalisation. Companies that effectively integrate innovation into their product development process can gain a significant competitive advantage.
For example, Henkel researchers claim to have developed a new generation of automatic dishwashing tablets that deliver full cleaning power even in short and low-temperature dishwasher cycles. The high-performance Somat 10 dishwashing tablets are an example of a product innovation that couples better performance with a smaller ecological footprint. Since dishwashers consume a great deal of energy, it makes ecological sense to use short and low-temperature programs. “By making the Somat 10 tablets dissolve more easily, we succeeded in getting them to release the ingredients faster so that they have more time to act on food residues and do a better job,” explains Dr. Thomas Eiting, a chemist in the household cleaners’ research department at Henkel .