Sustainable Indonesia

A sustainable design centre that supports a major rebranding of Indonesian design by 2010


Business tells us that 'design sells' but increasingly business is starting to recognise that design comes with a set of social and environmental responsibilities as well as serving our global economy. Who will be the first companies to invest in the co-ordination and mobilisation of design communities that can self-manage their human and material resources to create a better balance between local and global economy, thus bringing stability to an increasingly fragile and unpredictable global market? What might these future design communities look like? Who will be involved? How will technology help to organise these networks? How will consumers track the design process that constitutes their products? How will this effect the value of design? What will the new stories surrounding these design communities sound, look and feel like? Will design itself become a future currency?

Sustainable Design Workshop in Tembi, Jojakarta, Indonesia, 16-20 January 2008


In 2010, the legislation that is currently in place to stop other countries taking natural resources out of Indonesia will be lifted. This is expected to be taken advantage of by China and other countries with cheap production costs. Indonesia has a large number of craft based communities, most famously in areas such as Bali, Bangdung and Jojakarta. Working conditions vary, and education into sustainable processes is poor resulting in many crafts people and designers using, for example, unsustainable finishes on their products. Those people who produce inherently sustainable products are unsure how to communicate this to their buyers. There is also a lack of education into trends and marketing leading to many people trying to imitate western trends rather than creating trends for the market. What Indonesia does have to offer sustainable design is a wealth of natural resources such as bamboo, an indigenous knowledge of materials and processes, a highly creative and skilled craft/ design community, a spiritual understanding of sustainability,