Human centered design is ill prepared to tackle the upcoming challenges posed by climate change because these challenges are system level in nature. Such challenges will require an evolution of methods that go beyond the usability of a product because sustainable design doesn't inherently challenge the system taht the designs are sustaining and you cannot empathize your way out of a bad business model.
This thesis explored design’s role in transitioning the Swedish food system to one that is more resilient to the shocks caused by climate change and in the context of the project duration, COVID-19. The project’s central question was: What does food citizenship look like in a resilient food system, and what design process is necessary to facilitate such a solution?
The project collaborated with a local food ecosystem startup, Harvest, which has the mission to improve the local food supply chain so everyone can eat deliciously and sustainably. Together with Harvest, the project developed a vision of what the local food ecosystem will look like in a viable world. It proposes that collective action around food is a possible vehicle for systems transition.
The resulting design is the proposition of a network that connects urban communities to local food producers while facilitating the support required to expand the production capability and stability of the local food ecosystem. The network is grounded in the design principles synthesized from the research conducted with the creative communities in Sweden that are working towards a resilient food system. The ideas of mutual aid and the permaculture ethics of people care and fair share have been guiding forces as supporting those living in transition is an essential element of food systems transition. From this proposition the project sets to explore what disruptive innovations need to occur in order to reach this vision. By framing the project in this way I aim to not only illuminating what the preferable future looks like and how it will function, but also illustrating how it is possible to reach this future.