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Undergraduate Research Journal

Abstract

In today’s culture sustainability has become a buzzword, especially in the design community. In the context of design, sustainability proposes to meet the needs of the current population without taking away from future generations (DiDomenica, 2010). This concept can extend further than the design world, because interior designers greatly impact the world by determining what kinds of buildings are being designed and whether or not they are truly sustainable. Sustainability has three parts that are all interconnected: ecology, economy, and equity. Ecology seeks to protect the environment and preserve it for future generations. Economy seeks to do the same thing as ecology but with consideration to money by managing resources so that the ability to support future generations is not diminished. Equity, the least understood of the triad, aims to give each person the chance to meet all of their basic human needs including finding fulfilling work, meeting personal goals, and seeking different styles of livelihood or living.

The purpose is to analyze the degree to which the three part triad of sustainability is addressed by interior designers in a two edition special volume of the Journal of Interior Design on sustainable design, and to propose ways in which interior designers could better address all three of the sustainability factors in design solutions. The method of analysis includes a review of articles in the Journal of Interior Design, Volume 37, numbers 1 and 2 on sustainable design followed by the review of three case studies to better understand how designers address design problems relative to the three factors of sustainability in design practice.

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