EcoDesign projects for electronic industry

korea4bEconcept performed pilot projects on EcoDesign and implementation of new EU directives and legislations (WEEE, RoHS, EuP) with four companies in Korea: Samsung Electronics, Hansol LCD, Inter-M und Medison.

The aim of these projects was to make the participants familiar with the methodologies, strategies and tools of Ecodesign, initially by looking at case studies from the electronics industry, then applying those methodologies into pilot projects.

As a result of legislative and others sorts of pressures, the need to apply eco-design strategies in companies and throughout the supply chain is increasing. This demands greater understanding of environmental considerations amongst all stakeholders of the electronics sector from consumers and retailers up to manufacturers and component suppliers. Important issues are for instance:

  • design for dismantling/ design for recycling
  • material and energy efficiency
  • use of recycled materials
  • use of fewer components
  • eliminating hazardous substance

In opposition to this lack of awareness, the business benefits of Ecodesign can be significant, for example:

  • legal compliance/ reduced risks
  • cost savings
  • increased competitiveness
  • increased innovation
  • reduced environmental impacts
  • higher employee motivation and productivity.

Starting date: end of September, 2004
Duration: 3 months
Participants: Product managers, product engineers, marketing, environmental officers, management, designers

Visit one: Introduction and analysis
Visit two: Idea generation and prioritization, design strategies
Visit three: Elaborating design concept, implementation and communication

In between visits, the participants were asked to continue working on the pilot projects and 
to present the achieved results at the beginning of the next visit. They could consult the experts 
from econcept during the three month period.

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1 Introduction and Analysis


  • Introduction to Sustainable Development, Sustainable Design and Ecodesign
  • History and background of Ecodesign
  • Overview of a typical Ecodesign and product development process
  • Drivers for Ecodesign, e.g. legislation

Environmental interventions in the design and product development process, overview about Ecodesign methodology and tools

Tools, e.g.:

  • Sustainability SWOT
  • Ecodesign Checklist
  • Benchmarking
  • LCA-software-program, e.g. SimaPro
  • Scenario techniques

2 Idea generation and prioritisation, design strategies


  • Including environmental aspects in Idea generation and Design Concept
  • Ecodesign Strategies/ Life Cycle Thinking, e.g.
    – Design for Material Efficiency
    – Design for Energy Efficiency
    – Design for End-of Life, Reuse, Remanufacturing, Recycling,
    – Design for Disassembly
  • Best Practice Cases in Ecodesign
  • From product to service: Sustainable Product Service SystemsTools, e.g.:
  • Creativity Techniques
  • Ecodesign Strategy List
  • Benchmarking/ best practice cases
  • Ecodesign Portfolio for evaluation
  • Eco-Radar for evaluation
  • Material and other databases

3 Elaborating Design Concept, Implementation and Communication


  • Green marketing and communication
  • Obstacles and Drivers for Implementation, e.g. consumer’s choices
  • Final evaluation before market launch economy/ environment
  • Formulating Specifications for Implementation
  • Managing the product life cycle, Take back and Recycling Systems
  • Managing Ecodesign on a regular basis/ Integration in normal procedures
  • Eco-Supply chain management
  • Sources for further Ecodesign research, information, consultation and software
  • Looking Ahead: Technology Roadmaps, EuP Directive, Sustainability in the IT Industry

Tools, e.g.:

  • LCA/ LCC
  • Eco-Radar, more elaborated
  • Green Marketing and Communication tools, e.g. Eco-labels, product declaration, product information, packaging
  • Format for Implementation Specifications