Fluid transitions to more sustainable product service systems

Cook, M. (2014). Fluid transitions to more sustainable product service systems. Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, 12 pp. 1–13.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eist.2014.04.003


While Product Service Systems (PSS) are not inherently sustainable, they may form part of the mix of innovations that contribute to the development of more sustainable futures. However, whether the current trajectory of PSS research, with its emphasis on universal frameworks and standardisation adequately reflects and builds upon PSS diversity revealed by case study research may be questioned. Opportunities for transition to more sustainable PSS may be lost. In response, this paper draws on sustainable architecture to propose fluid transitions to more sustainable PSS: to PSS design practices that embrace diversity and enable specific PSS to be developed which address contextual interpretations of sustainability challenges. The core ideas of the PSS design are critically engaged in light of the principles and priorities of fluid transitions. Research directions to support fluid transitions to more sustainable PSS design practices are then explicated.

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