Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Educating for environmental sustainability and educating for creativity: actively compatible or missed opportunities?

By Kay Stables


This paper identifies the importance of both creativity and environmental sustainability for developing individual learners and society as a whole. It suggests that sometimes these two concepts appear to be in tension and that, politically, each is often championed by different communities. The relationship between creativity and environmental sustainability is explored in three separate contexts: in a design and technology schools context where teenage learners are being facilitated to develop creative responses within design briefs that include environmental considerations; through interviewing student teachers who have undertaken an ecodesign project; and through interviews with professional ecodesign practitioners. The tensions, compromises and contradictions evident where there is limited experience of environmental issues is contrasted with the level of optimisation and creativity engaged when designers have more maturity in this area. Finally, some suggestions are made for taking forward creativity and environmental sustainability in technology education through an ecodesign capability approach

Topics: W200
Publisher: Springer
Year: 2009
OAI identifier:

Suggested articles


  1. (2007). Affluenza: how to be successful and stay sane.
  2. (2002). An analysis of the attainment target level descriptors and associated programme of study in relation to the design and technology mission statement. London: Department for Education and Skills,
  3. (2004). Assessing Design Innovation: A research and development project for the Department for Education & Skills (DfES) and the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA). London: Goldsmiths
  4. (2003). Building on success—the unique contribution of design and technology: A report to
  5. Climate cool by design exhibition, from
  6. (2002). Creative education white paper. Taipei: Ministry of Education.
  7. (2001). Culture and creativity—The next ten year.
  8. (2001). Design and technology in a knowledge economy.
  9. (1999). Design and technology: National Curriculum for England. London:
  10. (2005). Education for sustainable development in initial teacher training: issues for interdisciplinary collaboration. doi
  11. (2007). Ever and again: Experimental recycled textiles (p. 36). London: Textiles Environment Design, Chelsea College of Art and Design.
  12. (2007). Evidence through the looking glass: Developing performance and assessing capability.
  13. (2007). Evidence through the looking glass: Developing performance and assessing capability. In
  14. (2001). Global Issues, local actions: Some key agenda items for technology education in the new millennium. In: TENZ
  15. Good and gorgeous exhibition, from
  16. (1985). In place of confusion: Technology and science in the curriculum. London & Nottingham: Nuffield-Chelsea Curriculum Trust/National Centre for School Technology.
  17. (1992). Inequality reexamined. doi
  18. (2006). Productivism and the product paradigm in technological education.
  19. (2007). Researching design learning: Issues and findings from two decades of development. doi
  20. (2004). Stables 123Lawson, B.
  21. (1998). Sustainability and design and technology in schools.
  22. (1991). The assessment of performance in design and technology.
  23. (2003). The problem of design problems. doi
  24. (2000). The unpickled portfolio: Pioneering assessment in design and technology. In
  25. (2006). Well fashioned: Eco style in the UK, Crafts Council Gallery London,

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.