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Meta-design is the design to the design itself; it can be as a higher order of design; that transcends design disciplines through contingent workforce and open-ended process. It is inherently collaborative, inviting stakeholders and users into the process. The way of working can be useful in sustainable fashion design perspectives on complex problem-solving situations; for example, the result of a meta-design operation solving and lower aircraft use of fossil fuel.

Meta design framework

  • To create a framework for a design practice that fosters greater wisdom.
  • To address primary human needs (e.g. food, shelter, mobility) in a joined-up way.
  • To find design methods that encourage a more ecological society.
  • To find new ways to increase biological diversity.
  • To find new ways to hinder entropy at the urban metabolic level.
  • To work towards some form of creative democracy.
  • To inspire and cultivate a ‘diversity-of-diversities’ within relevant organisations.
  • To transform the ‘diversity-of-diversities’ into a global ‘synergy-of-synergies’.
  • To incorporate economic thinking and entrepreneurship as a normal part of the (meta)design task.


  • Giaccardi, 2005; Tham and Jones, 2008

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