Climate-friendly businesses tied to service design


Delegates follow the proceedings at Kenyatta International Convention Centre on September 4, 2023 during the Africa Climate Summit 2023. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO | NMG

After the inaugural African Climate Summit, the call for businesses to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while adapting to a warming planet has never been louder.

As the world pivots towards eco-conscious practices, service design emerges as a pivotal approach. This methodology not only enhances people’s experiences but also stands as a unique tool for forging sustainable businesses capable of fostering climate-friendly practices.

Service design transcends the traditional product-centric view. It recognises that every interaction, whether digital, real-world, or a blend of both, leaves an impression and more so an impact.

At its core, service design's strength lies in aligning people’s needs, business objectives, societal well-being, and planetary health to create a win-win-win scenario which is crucial for sustainability.

In the business realm, sustainability extends beyond shrinking carbon footprints or adopting eco-friendly materials, it encompasses crafting systems that actively contribute to the environment, society, and financial health. Its emphasis on empathy and systemic thinking naturally tallies with this pursuit.

By detangling the web connecting stakeholders, processes, and outcomes, service design uncovers opportunities for innovation.

Infusing sustainability into service design is not a one-size-fits-all endeavour. It necessitates a deep understanding of each business's unique context, values, and aspirations.

Nevertheless, the foundational principles of empathy, systems thinking, and co-creation steer us towards the future of businesses becoming agents of positive change.

The writer is the Service designer at Marathon XP.

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