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EcoDesign and global compliance: the role of virtual teams

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2 Author(s)

The production and consumption of manufactured goods across regions and markets has reached a new level of complexity. At a time when products are designed in one region, manufactured in another, and then sold throughout the world, issues of environmental compliance and risk management have become critical design considerations. Product-oriented regulations are being implemented at a rapid rate with substantial implications for design. This significant challenges for those companies eager to maintain high levels of corporate responsibility and low levels of environmental risk and impact. Through productive collaboration with industry associations and specialist consultants, ESHconnect has successfully developed a suite of Web-based tools that inform and resource companies and their product developers. Our content and methodologies help ensure that EcoDesign becomes a robust business process that maximizes trouble-free market access. This necessarily demands an intimate knowledge of regulations that might impact on new products and their life cycle performance. Mindful of cultural factors, legislative complexity and differing time zones, our approach involves personnel based in multiple locations around the world coming together as virtual teams to build and deliver value-added knowledge covering EcoDesign, Product Stewardship, hazardous wastes, restricted substances, energy efficiency and environmental labelling. The paper describes the process and experiences of establishing a global EcoDesign compliance system, including the inherent socio-cultural factors which determine success or failure.

Published in:

Environmentally Conscious Design and Inverse Manufacturing, 2003. EcoDesign '03. 2003 3rd International Symposium on

Date of Conference:

8-11 Dec. 2003