Innovating, Designing and Engineering Doughnuts

Design for Sustainability and Circularity Framework, Fit for the 21st Century

The High Value Manufacturing (HVM) Catapult’s seven centres are working together and with industry to develop a design framework that will help bring to market a new generation of products that are increasingly sustainable, by design.

During 2023, eight engineering Interns from the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI), one of the seven HVM Catapult centres, led an internal project to explore the nine planetary boundaries and their relevance to industry. Their analysis and presentation of their findings highlighted the growing importance of incorporating the scientific knowledge of the boundaries into the design and innovation of future products, systems, and supply chains. 

The bulk of the environmental and social impacts of products are associated with their use (lifecycle) and production (supply chain) and are a result of the business and engineering design decisions made in the design phase. Products that are sustainable from environmental, societal, and financial perspectives, will help businesses to thrive in the 21st century. 

Working with businesses, universities and government bodies, HVM Catapult’s Design for Sustainability and Circularity Framework initiative aims to explore how recent advances in our understanding of the Earth’s intricate physical, chemical, and biological cycles, known as the Earth System, can be combined with relevant tools, methods, and whole systems thinking approaches to boost environmental, societal, and economic sustainability.

Among many other aspects we are looking at is how to best incorporate the key concepts and principles embedded in the both Nine Planetary Boundaries Framework and Doughnut Economic Model into the innovation and product development lifecycle. 

On the programme, we are looking to connect and engage with more like-minded individuals, researchers, businesses and organisations.  If you would like further information on the project and what we are doing, please do contact me.  

We have established a LinkedIn Group for the project: Design for Sustainable, by Design: Designing for the Planet, People and Prosperity.





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