Co-creative Experiences for the Achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals

  • Jorge Sierra-PérezEmail author
  • Ignacio López-Forniés
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering book series (LNME)


The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been established by the United Nations to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The challenges to address in the achievement of these objectives, due to their complex and abstract nature, will require the search for specific solutions to local problems in a framework of collaboration. This collaboration will have to take place between different fields of knowledge, social strata or countries. For this reason, co-creation methodologies have been identified treated in a generic way, as a group of promising tools in the achievement of the SDGs, since they are successfully applied in complex and multidisciplinary work environments. This study reviews and analyses various cases of how co-creation methodologies have addressed the SDGs so far; among them, the study has focused on Design Thinking, Living Labs, Citizen Participation and Collective Intelligence. The results of each case are presented and its common applications are discussed for all the SDGs or as a discrimination of methodologies based on the selected objective.


Co-creation Sustainable development Creative methodologies Eco-design 


  1. 1.
    United Nations (UN) General Assembly: Transforming our world: the 2030 agenda for sustainable development. A/RES/70/1 (2015)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Sriskandarajah, D.: Toward an accountability revolution? Citizen participation and the SDGs. In: Kharas, H., Kato, H., McArthur, J., Desai, R. (eds.) From Summits to Solutions: Innovations in Implementing the Sustainable Development Goals. Brookings Institution Press, Washington, DC (2018)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Schick, A., Hobson, P.R., Ibisch, P.L.: Conservation and sustainable development in a VUCA world: the need for a systemic and ecosystem-based approach. Ecosyst Heal Sustain. 3, e01267 (2017). Scholar
  4. 4.
    Kuenkel, P., Schaefer, K.: Shifting the way we co-create. How we can turn the challenges of sustainability into opportunities (2013)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Kauffman, S.A.: At Home in the Universe: The Search for the Laws of Self-Organization and Complexity. Oxford University Press, New York (1995)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Ostergaard, K.J., Summers, J.D.: Development of a systematic classification and taxonomy of collaborative design activities. J. Eng. Des. 20, 57–81 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    European Commission: Cities as living labs – increasing the impact of investment in the circular economy for sustainable cities, Brussels (2017)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Ståhlbröst, A.: A living lab as a service: creating value for micro-enterprises through collaboration and innovation. Technol. Innov. Manag. Rev. (2018). Scholar
  9. 9.
    Vaittinen, I., Vervoort, K.: Guidelines for living labs in CS (2017).
  10. 10.
    Brown, T.: Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation, vol. 31. Harper Collins, New York (2009). Scholar
  11. 11.
    Watson, M.: Sustainable development goals through the design thinking lense. Design Project (2017)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Mulgan, G.: Collective intelligence and achieving the sustainable development goals (2018).
  13. 13.
    Center for Collective Intelligence: Handbook of Collective Intelligence (2012).
  14. 14.
    Musa, E.: Crowdsourcing social innovation, pp. 54–77 (2017). Scholar
  15. 15.
    Bogers, M., Zobel, A.K., Afuah, A., Almirall, E., Brunswicker, S., Dahlander, L., et al.: The open innovation research landscape: established perspectives and emerging themes across different levels of analysis. Ind. Innov. (2017). Scholar
  16. 16.
    Jacovella, L., Lio, P.: Speeding up the transition to collective awareness. In: 2013 IEEE International Conference on Communications (ICC), pp. 220–224 (2013).
  17. 17.
    Wise, S., Paton, R.A., Gegenhuber, T.: Value co-creation through collective intelligence in the public sector. VINE 42, 251–276 (2012). Scholar
  18. 18.
    Smith, L.G.: Impact Assessment and Sustainable Resource Management. Routledge, Harlow (1983)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Yesersky, P.T.: Concurrent engineering: your strategic weapon in today’s jungle. C. Manag. Acc. Mag. Hamilton 67, 24–27 (1993)Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Filho, W., Andrade Guerra, J.B., Mifsud, M., Pretorius, R.: Universities as living labs for sustainable development: a global perspective 26 (2017)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
  22. 22.
    Water Series (2018).
  23. 23.
    Family Justice Courts. Family justice: strengthening the fundamentals (2017)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Earley, R., Reitan Andersen, K.: Design thinking for sustainability: a case study of a research project between Hennes & Mauritz and textiles environment design. In: Resilience – The New Research Frontier. ISDRS (2014)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    McMurren, J., Verhulst, S., Young, A., Sangokoya, D.: Open Education Information in Tanzania (2016)Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Ceschin, F.: Critical factors for implementing and diffusing sustainable product-service systems: insights from innovation studies and companies’ experiences. J. Clean. Prod. 45, 74–88 (2013). Scholar
  27. 27.
    Hogge, B.: The Open Public Services Network (2016)Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Kirwan, C.G.: Smart Asia: a new platform for collective intelligence. In: Rau, P.L.P. (ed.) Cross-Cultural Design. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 8528, pp. 299–308. Springer, Cham (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Involve (2019).
  30. 30.
    Wael, R.: #FirstTimeIwasHarassed (2018)Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Madrid Repara (2019).
  32. 32.
    Regional Forum on Sustainable Development: Regional Forum on Sustainable Development. Cases Studies. Geneva (2018)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Design and Manufacturing EngineeringUniversity of ZaragozaSaragossaSpain

Personalised recommendations