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Design for sustainable business models -tool

13 September 2023
Design for sustainable business -tool consists of a method for designing more sustainable business models, products, and services, and designing more sustainable operations in accordance with the sustainable business model and sustainable products and services. The tool is a self-reflection tool for the use of entrepreneurs, management teams, or product leaders.
Technical details

The tool has modules which means a user or a group of users can choose to focus on some activities of a business model, such as products or services, or an activity system or managing operations. The tool provides instant feedback and recommendations.

The idea of a pilot is to invite entrepreneurs and developers to test a tool on their terms, give feedback, and influence the future elements of a tool. The tool will be freely available for them in 2025 and can be used on a regular basis as a management, development and communication tool as a well as an idea bank offering insights of making innovative changes toward more sustainable business models. Moreover, we invite entrepreneurs and employees to learn about sustainable business models and share experiences with peers, experts and researchers.

The aim of the Design for Sustainability tool is to support micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises in Finland, Sweden, Norway, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Estonia in improving competitive positioning and transforming their business in line with economic, social, and environmental sustainability. Design for Sustainability tool offers an instrument for reflection, creativity, management, and communication. It contains modules that serve different needs and goals, also for expert-intensive micro enterprises.

The piloting is a design-science-based research- and development process for fine-tuning the tools and services to meet the needs and goals of users in terms of contents, methods, the user-interface and its game-like elements and the materials sources provided. The users feedback, experiences and further ideas are collected. Similarly, data about the experienced challenges and opportunities of developing sustainable business models, products and services are collected.

Design for sustainability pilot is open for many kinds of micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises from different industries from Baltic Sea program countries. Also, foundations, associations and other kinds of organizations can participate if they want to assess and get development insights for sustainable business models and sustainable products and services.

We offer positive learning and reflection experiences for business, product, service, and process developers. Participants have an opportunity to test a tool and materials online and give feedback. If a participant company, individual, or team wishes a guided workshop on the topic, they can book a time with developers of the Design for Sustainability Team for consulting for a facilitated workshop or open dicussion. Participants can also choose to participate in an online Design for Sustainable Business Models peer meetings to share experiences and learn from other entrepreneurs. Participants get a certificate for participating. Participants can also let organizers know if they want visibility for their enterprises and their business stories can be shared in transnational project publications. In 2025, the tool will be published with a CC-BY-SA license that enables users to use it, modify it, or utilize the tool also commercially.

The experiments will be organized flexibly in 2024. Participation is free. Choose options that suit you:

  • Online test, 2 x 2 hours, for individuals
  • Online test 2 x 4 hours, for groups
  • Online test 2 x 8 hours, for organizations
  • Facilitated peer team events every second month
  • Facilitated online or on-site workshops or discussions about the topic can be reserved with a limited availability.

No preliminary knowledge is required. Testing times can be booked from an organizer (LAB University of Applied Sciences). We collect anonymous feedback from experiences. The anonymous data collections are used for fine tuning a tool and researching and developing knowledge about sustainable business models and related services. The participants get all results and a tool for themselves. Inquiries or registration heidi.myyrylainen@lab.fi