Monocle on Design

Designed to last – part 1

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2 February 2021

Episode 486

30 minutes

In the first part of our ‘Designed to last’ special we take a look at the electronics, clothes and products that have been designed without longevity in mind, encompassing everything from planned obsolescence in technology to fast fashion. Plus: we speak to Jay Osgerby about the design industry’s obligation to the environment.

2 February 2021

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Chapter 1

11 minutes


Photo: Getty Images

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Chapter 1

Planned obsolescence

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Planned obsolescence is a sizeable problem in the tech industry with brands such as Apple and Samsung recently in court. We discuss the issue and the impact that it can have on the design process, the consumer and of course the environment.

11 minutes

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Chapter 2

10 minutes

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Chapter 2

Fast fashion

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Fashion contributes about 10 per cent of global carbon-dioxide emissions every year and, with the rise in fast fashion, much of the resulting products have a very short lifespan indeed. Author and fashion journalist Dana Thomas explains the issues.

10 minutes

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Chapter 3

5 minutes


Photo: Mark Cocksedge

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Chapter 3

Barber Osgerby

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Jay Osgerby of celebrated east London design studio Barber Osgerby discusses its innovative applications of recycled material and the importance of creating circular products.

5 minutes

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