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In the Loop: JohnPaul Kusz

April 1, 2014
12:30-2:00pm CST
IIT Institute of Design, 6th floor
350 N LaSalle St
Chicago, IL 60654

Design in the Anthropocene 

We are entering a new and world-changing epoch. The Anthropocene, a new geologic era characterized by humans as a force in shaping nature, has begun. A vast majority of ecosystems on the planet now reflect the presence of people. With our overwhelming impact on the planet we have unwittingly made ourselves its caretakers. If we as a species are to survive, and hopefully thrive, in the future, we will need to take full responsibility for our actions and their consequences.

Like it or not, we have crossed the Rubicon; we cannot return. We will either “design” our course forward with intention and greater precaution, or we will default and gamble our future on the unintended consequences of our actions. 

The challenge we face is nothing less than existential. What we must change is our relationship to the source of our wealth—natural capital. This demands not only a change in thinking but also a change in being. Now, that is a design problem!

About JohnPaul

JohnPaul Kusz, FIDSA, is president of JPKusz, Ltd.  Working in both industry and academia, he provides business and development strategies focused on generating more sustainable outcomes.

He has taught as an adjunct professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology at both the Institute of Design and the Stuart School of Business, where he co-founded the Center for Sustainable Enterprise.  For over twenty-five years he has written and lectured on the potential of design to not only mitigate social and environmental impacts, but also to create a viable future.  Through his work and research he explores the development of “sustainable” product, business, and system models.