This year the second annual Sustainable Design Summit (SDS) opens 28 November at Museum of London Docklands. Interior designers, brand owners and trusted suppliers from across hotel, cruise and aircraft interiors will unite to discuss sustainable design and responsible sourcing. Between new legislation such as the new reporting requirements to the UK’s Net Zero Industry Act and returning to the actionable outcomes of the 2022 conference, this November marks a timely reunion of the three industries.
Fostering cross-industry collaboration
SDS will be hosted by Darian Stibbe, Executive Director at The Partnering Initiative (TPI). A passionate advocate of effective collaboration across societal sectors, Darian is the lead author of the United Nations’ SDG Partnership Guidebook. This is a practical resource designed to help build high-impact multi-stakeholder partnerships. As such, he is in the perfect position to champion the focus of SDS 2023: cross-industry collaboration.
Cristian Sutter, CEO of Avensis Aviation and SDS speaker, said of the potential of cross-industry collaboration, ‘Partnership and collaborations are the cornerstones of success, propelling us forward in our roles, companies, and sectors, unlocking endless possibilities through collective synergy and shared expertise.’
Demystifying the data behind sustainability
In addition to the standard industry-specific breakouts, SDS has programmed a series of talks in response to a call from 2022 delegates for more granular sessions that put sustainability data under the microscope. Attend Understanding your emissions: What are your numbers really telling you, Data, transparency and tangible actions: Your next steps are easier than you think and Materials, Manufacturing and Design: The key 3 elements of lifespan planning to learn more about how to ground your company’s sustainability strategy with data-led planning.
The topic of owner accountability was bubbling throughout SDS 2022. This year, delegates who want to follow up on those discussions will find the opportunity at several 2023 talks. One of the two morning breakout sessions, Hotel Interiors: Developing targets and directing owners towards sustainable design, puts the spotlight on garnering owner buy-in to sustainability goals. Focuses include empowering the specifiers to inform ownership in the drive towards sustainable design and life cycle cost modelling. The Opening Keynote, titled Progress, leadership and transparency through the supply chain, lays out approaches for building sustainability strategy at the top levels of every company.
Turning conversation into action
The Opening Keynote also features an exciting update from speaker Joshua Wilkie, Waste Management and Circularity Programs, Air Canada. He will be providing tangible feedback on putting the lessons from the FlyZero project into practice. Flyzero, a ‘detailed and holistic study of the design challenges… of potential zero carbon emission aircraft concepts’ was conducted by 16 universities and research organisations. It was lead authored by 2022 SDS speaker Ben Orson. One of the 45 recommendations of the FlyZero Sustainable Cabin Design paper is to seek sustainability practices from other industries that can be adopted or adapted. The report designates the effect of the recommendation, marked low complexity, high impact within the report, as resolving the ‘current issue of insufficient transparency for improved sharing of experience and lessons learnt.’
SDS has expanded conference and breakout sessions to last an hour. This will allow delegates to really sink their teeth into the topic. In 2022, exchange of ideas inspired many delegates to drive change within their own teams. Tasha Jackson, Sustainability Lead, Boeing said, ‘Being surrounded by passionate people, driven to do better was infectious. I am thankful to represent Boeing and encourage the collaboration necessary to create positive change.’
Revolutionary sustainable products
In addition to expanded conference sessions, SDS will feature an updated product showcase featuring all-new companies and new-on-the-market products. Startup company Walls of Eden will debut their revolutionary new wall tiles. These combine biophilic inspiration with 3D-printed artistry and require no adhesive or glue. This draws a thorough line from SDS 2022 where speaker Alan Stewart, Director, SMC Design called for improved cradle-to-grave product design, saying, ‘Sustainable interiors need to be designed in a way in which we think about the deconstruction of projects after use. For example, wall panelling can be reused if it can be easily unscrewed. When we use adhesives it becomes very difficult to reuse those products.’
Other exciting companies and products featured in the SDS 2023 product showcase include Granorte, a leading manufacturer of cork coverings. They offer state-of-the-art solutions for contemporary sustainable architecture. Meanwhile, Tower Supplies targets the hospitality sector of cruise interiors by aiming to replace up to 90% of all regular cleaning and disinfectant products aboard vessels with their proprietary CtrlFlow product.
Other products on show include the world’s first circular bed linen, a new material created from recycled leather waste, EcoVadis gold-medal-winning sustainable lighting and Spared™, a creative service turning landfill waste into beautiful products and objects d’art.
View the full agenda for a full breakdown of sessions and line-up of esteemed speakers.