If we were deciding how to begin recycling today, we probably wouldn’t choose a system that looks like the ones we’ve ended up with. From a relatively simple concept; make stuff that we throw away into new useful stuff, we’ve ended up with a variable, complex and at times confusing system that even design experts don’t understand. Don Norman, one of these experts, is mystified by what should be the most basic forms of recycling, such as whether or not a milk carton can be recycled. His article highlights the madness of our current systems, be they in the US, UK or HK, and the difficulty of dealing with their ‘legacies’, reminding us of the importance of design led thinking and the opportunities we have now to design better systems for the future.
Designing the complexity out of recycling systems
Mar 12, 2020