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Design for the Real World: Human Ecology and Social Change [Paperback]

Victor Papanek
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

11 Feb 1985
Victor Papanek's classic study offers a blueprint for survival in the energy and resource deficient world of today, suggesting strategies for developing products that respond to human needs.

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Design for the Real World: Human Ecology and Social Change + Cradle to Cradle. Remaking the Way We Make Things
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Product details

  • Paperback: 418 pages
  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson; 2 edition (11 Feb 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500273588
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500273586
  • Product Dimensions: 2.1 x 13.4 x 20 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,969 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"The book is wonderfully alive, and full of examples to instruct, amuse or horrify. The enthusiasm and verbal exuberance of Papanek as he rips away the pretensions, hypocrisises and vices of the real world are always stimulating." -- Arthur Conway, "New Scientist" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Although most of Dr. Papanek's work had been in product design, his background included architecture and anthropology. He taught or chaired departments at universities in Canada, the United States, Denmark, Sweden and England. In recognition of his work to create a closer understanding between the impoverished Third World and technologically advanced countries, he was nominated for the Alternative Nobel Prize. In 1981 he received the ICSID/Kyoto Honours Award for his development of a communications device for the governments of Tanzania and Nigeria. He was also senior design consultant to Volvo of Sweden, to the government of Papua New Guinea and to a medical lighting firm in Australia. From 1981 he was permanent J.L. Constant Distinguished Professor at the School of Architecture and Urban Design at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. Dr. Papanek died in 1998. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you read one book on design... 11 Mar 2004
Format:Paperback
Design For the Real World is a must read for any designer, in any discipline. This book is about one thing; honesty. The honest use of materials and having an honest approach are at the heart of Papanek's fundamental laws on how anything should be designed. His views on ecology, recycling and the social affects of design were truely ahead of his time. His structures for problem solving, brainstorming techniques and idea generation are equally amazing. A book that should be re-read every couple of years to realign your design approach and ensure you're not just making things worse.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Provocation for the design world 8 Feb 2000
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
If you are a designer, who does not feel he/she is contributing to the world in any way other than superficially, read this book. It will open your eyes. It may leave you with a sense of doubting everything you have occomplished in the past, in fact you may even loose some clients in the bargain. It's design theory that will make you think twice about everything you do, you'll desperately want to put it into practice ... Best of Luck!.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good but a bit preachy 29 Oct 2012
By LEO
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This books is great for anyone who's at all interested in Design and sustainability, giving great inspiration about how to design things that are better for the world in general. The only downside is Papanek sometimes sounds too sure of himself and can seem a bit preachy as if he's worked out how to save the world and everyone else is either too stupid and lazy to change things or are evil corporate fat cats. All in all a good read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
40 years ago designer and designteacher Victor Papanek anticipicated on moral issues in design. Some are solved in a - for him - unexpected capitalistic way as Papanek seemed to detest marketing and investments needed to fullfill your goals.
The distance in time and the 'unslick' photo's in the book help to think things over now we arrived in a political and globally rather changed, but still real world.
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