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Design for America Meeting

Posted by Stacy Gloss on October 29, 2021

Meeting 10/29/2021

Present:  Anisha, Ananya, Pooja and Stacy Gloss

The project idea that the students would like to pursue is Making connections between pollution and people – focused on smart phones, tablets, computer e-waste generated by students. The student group may consider various technologies in their project: laptops, gaming consoles, wearable tech.

They will research:

  • Material Sourcing  / ethical sourcing  (What are major parts/tech of smart phone and how they are produced? Conditions? Environmental Impact?)
  • Manufacturing / Ethical production
  • Transportation
  • Sales
  • Purchasing frequency/habits/thoughts: What do students think about environmental impact of technology when purchasing technology?
  • End-of-product-life (what happens to products after their use?) – What do people think happens? What really happens?
  • Other considerations: data centers

Project members may reach out to people in the community who are already knowledgeable about recycling to such as:

For the next meeting the DFA group should be prepared with the specific research questions they want to answer by conducting this research and their thoughts on research methods --- these questions should inform their approach for the project and related initiative they will want to develop. They will also review the Zero Waste  iCAP portal page for resources.

Research Methods:

Question:  Are there any special considerations (for example IRB) for DFA students to create a survey for campus on how often students purchase / throw away / recycle smart phones? Are there any processes that need to be followed within ISEE to do this research?

Other questions:

Is there a recycling coordinator on campus that has any data about e-waste on campus?

Potential things to consider

The group will think about how they want to visualize their project for impact. Students also are open to the audience at this point – could include campus and off-campus audience. Off campus audience members could be the Champaign County Climate Coalition.  Interactive presentation could be set up in a community location like a library. The students could present their project to an iSEE committee – like Zero Waste and Resilience.