Efecem Kutuk, IDSA

Assistant Professor, Kean University

Efecem Kutuk is a multidisciplinary design academician and designer specializing in social design and entrepreneurship, sustainability, medical product design, the Internet of Things, and ethical and responsible commercial products. Kutuk's well-rounded design background and informed aesthetic are the products of his diverse and international experiences. His portfolio includes award-winning designs and social engagement projects.

Prof. Kutuk has taught Industrial Design courses at Drexel University, Montclair State University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, and Parsons School of Design. His work and student projects have been exhibited in international design shows and published in prestigious design magazines and blogs. Now he is an Assistant Professor and the Program Coordinator of Industrial Design in the Michael Graves College at Kean University.

He earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interior Architecture and Environmental Design from Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey, and a Master's degree in Industrial Design from Scuola Politecnica di Design in Milan, Italy.

Design Ethics, Planned Obsolescence, and Product Liability in Industrial Design Education

Education Symposium
World Café

Sept 13, 2022

Foyer - Table 4

10:00 AM - 10:55AM

Lately, more so than ever, consumers experience product failures on multiple levels—from welds breaking off ice cream scoopers during the second use, to deteriorating components that either require long labor hours to replace or force consumers to buy new. On occasion, poorly designed consumer goods cause major accidents. In recent decades, product design has turned into a "fast fashion" model: expedited product development with minimal testing prior to market launch, inexpensive material substitutes that cause declining performance or malfunctioning, calculated life span of products, and many more unethical practices.

Recalling the words of Victor Papanek, “There are professions more harmful than industrial design, but only a few,” how can ID faculty deliver the message without negatively affecting morale? ID curriculums typically focus on developing hard and soft skills, but what about ethics?

More needs to be done to educate the next generation of industrial designers on how poorly made and/or poorly designed products may cause major issues in the long run. Ultimately, we must encourage students to practice and apply ethical design.