In the first week of November, Software Business Lab was at the Elsevier Global Cleaner Production and Sustainable Consumption conference in the beautiful town of Sitges, Barcelona, Spain. Almost our whole team was present as we held our own workshop on Sustainability and Social Manufacturing on Monday the 2nd November. During the day, we heard inspiring presentations on a variety of subjects and raised discussion on new phenomena in the area. A special volume on social entrepreneurship will be published later based on the outcomes of the workshop.
The morning session was hosted by Professor Ines Ribeiro from the University of Lisbon. Our own team leader Timo Nyberg opened the session with an introductory speech on shared creation, production, and distribution, and how new kinds of value creation logic, user experience and entrepreneurship are shaping the world. He was followed by Software Business Lab researcher Markko Hämäläinen, who provided the audience with ideas on the workshop’s title term social manufacturing and what it means, and later talked about consumers joining in on the fabrication phase of a product’s value chain. Babak Mohajeri (also from SBL) shared his thoughts on how social manufacturing can contribute to sustainable development, and later continued with the upcoming changes of the value chain in the apparel industry. Marta Pinzone from Politecnico di Milano talked about megatrends influencing manufacturing and society, and Felipe Cerdas presented his views on the new era of production and how it affects the environment. The morning session was concluded by Jesse Karjalainen’s case study on the relevance of social manufacturing in high-end fashion brands from the Paris fashion week, and Akatsuki Ryu’s paper on indoor positioning sensors and a tracking service in a social manufacturing scenario.
While the morning session concentrated on social manufacturing mostly from the apparel industry’s point of view, the afternoon session – hosted by Sven Kreitlein and professor Kirsi Niinimäki – was dedicated to sustainability. There were presentations on removing waste in process-order handling processes (G. Xiong), socioeconomical and ecological carbon metabolism (F.-X. Meng), life cycle engineering (I. Ribeiro), pollution reduction by membrane filters (M. Y. Khairul Muis), and energy efficiency in factory environments (R. Z. Tang; N. Masroori; S. Kreitlein). Together, the presentations provided insight into promoting sustainability in the context of manufacturing. In addition, two final papers were presented on social manufacturing; Babak Mohajeri talked about using additive manufacturing to enable a transition towards a social manufacturing industry, and Joanna Mehtälä presented on using crowdsourcing platforms in new idea generation in fashion design.
The workshop was wrapped up by Timo Nyberg, who was happy with the way the workshop generated discussion on the presented subjects and invited everyone to send their papers to a social entrepreneurship special edition of the Journal of Cleaner Production and Sustainable Consumption. The Software Business Lab team will be working on the special issue long into 2016, since the final deadline for papers will be on August the 10th.
Text: Joanna Mehtälä
Photos: Akatsuki Ryu