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This Ikea circular economy design and product redesign utilized insights distilled from the e-waste downstream to redesign Ikea's global supply chain and serve as a model for what an in-house circular economy could look like. 

Design Strategy | Competitive Landscaping | User Research | Content Photography | Strategy | Product Design | Design Strategy | Story Boarding and Illustration

Partnering with:

Homeboy Electronics Recycling

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Product Redesign 

Circular Economy

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Retail Experience

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Solution: Use a product take-back system to create engaging customer experiences and build brand loyalty, while cutting down on waste and emissions.
Problem: Companies only address the front end of a product's life cycle, leaving e-recyclers to tackle impossible volumes of electronic waste.


Understanding the issue

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Problems and Solutions

Problem: Ikea uses band-aid fixes for a bigger environmental problem


Solution: Make Ikea the leading example for sustainability and create an engaging user experience   

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Problem: Electronic parts are difficult to disassemble  

Solution: Make recycling e-waste as easy, visible, and transparent as possible   

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Problem: Mass production treated as a one-way system

Solution: Reduce impact from materials used in the product and extend the usage of the material

Measuring Current Product Impact
Benchmark Product:
Ikea Rallen  
Product contains extraneous amount of different materials and lengthy disassembly time.
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Highest impact steamed from material extraction, refining, and processing as well as disposal  

Opportunities for improvement:

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Final Redesign
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Design Solution: Redesigned Ikea charging Docka made from closed-loop materials and interacted product return experience. 

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Product Redesign 

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Circular Economy

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Retail Experience

Current Linear Life Cycle
New Circular Life Cycle
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product redesign
Recycling as Branding 
Recycling as branding makes a material logo that is familiar yet unique to the product.
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CMF Strategy

Standardized polypropylene materials enables closed 

loop system

Target Users

Energetic Singles 

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Cool Splash

Satellite Employees 

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Black Star

Newbie Families

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Confetti splash

Freshmen Dormers 

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Designed for disassembly

+ Labeled parts

+ Special tool open tabs 

+ Disassembly area 

+ 100% recyclable 

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Product return station

By giving reward point when users return electronics, it encourages consumers to participate in the system and raises brand loyalty 

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Improving upon the existing return system:

Keep the existing recycling center at the exit, but add a return product area at the store entrance.




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By integrating material with a line of furniture, the amount and variety of material can be reduced.  

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Improved Impact
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Old Product Life Cycle Analysis: 
New Product Life Cycle Analysis: 
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+ Circular economy are normalized to


+ Less materials extracted 

+ Less waste

+ Smaller carbon footprint from 

   material processing  

+ Smaller shipping footprint

+ Almost 100% recyclable 

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