Utopia: Can We Achieve It?

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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Degree Programme in Graphic Design
Graafisen suunnittelun koulutusohjelma
This research is dedicated to find a sustainable solution to reduce mobile phone consumption without harming the mobile phone business. A utopia whereby consumers continue to own the latest piece of mobile phone technology, mobile phone manufacturers continue to make profits and yet not having a negative impact on our environment. Using empirical research method as the framework, I studied existing literature on current mobile phones consumption system through the business models employed by mobile phone manufacturers and operators; analysed mobile phone consumption lifecycle - from manufacture to purchase to usage to replacement of mobile phones; explored issues surrounding electronic waste (e-waste) and evaluated consumers’ consumption needs and desires relating to mobile phone technology. Henceforth, diagnosis of issues regarding mobile phones consumption system will be identified, thus created a platform for further exploration and discussion of my hypothesis. Which in this case was the introduction of the Three ‘R’s strategy (reduce, reuse and recycle) into the mobile phones consumption lifecycle. An assessment via online survey was conducted to examine if the hypothesis can accomplish reduction in mobile consumption without causing detrimental impact to the mobile phone business. The data and analysis from the survey showed that with the introduction of the Three ‘R’s strategy into the mobile phones consumption lifecycle, mobile phones consumption will be significantly reduced and thus able to slow down e-waste generation. More importantly, mobile phone sales and profits will not be compromised and consumers continued to enjoy the latest mobile phone technology.
Kirsi, Niinimäki
Thesis advisor
Marjatta, Itkonen
Kirsi, Niinimäki
mobile phones, sustainability, consumption, 3 R, reduce, reuse, recycle, modular phones