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Regen - Share, Make and Regenerate

Regen is an online collaborative community for upcycling products. The project attempts to look at sharing from three angles - community, environment and technology. Sharing is approached as co-production where what is shared is not simply material goods but rather ideas, creativity, pleasure and experience. The project outlines ‘making’ as an intrinsic attribute of human nature and how ‘sharing’ and ‘making’ can complement each other. Further, it discusses the creation from waste and upcycling as a way of uniting sustainability with making.

Process Work

The Problem

In recent years, sharing has been approached from the angle of consumption and the consumer. Platforms such as Lyft, Airbnb and Freecycle re-distribute services and goods for consumption. The Sharing Economy has been defined as “a socio-economic ecosystem built around the sharing of human and physical resources. It includes the shared creation, production, distribution, trade and consumption of goods and services by different people and organizations.”

Martin Heidegger proposed that our existence in the world is revealed through making.
This implies that human beings have a very particular way of existing in the world, of which the chief characteristic is the use of the body and equipment for doing and making.

The world we live in today is characterized by transience, desire for novelty, perceived obsolescence and insensitive over-consumption. Everything we consume is produced by large-scale industry. We seem to have lost touch with the most essential aspect of human nature - making.

Our Approach

Rather than consumption, co-production as a shared activity is something that has been overlooked in current sharing platforms. Our aim was to approach sharing platforms with the intent of co-producing and creating something rather than simply consuming or distributing resources.

A disconnect between production and consumption, between producer and consumer encourages detachment. The instilled attitudes of entitlement towards material possessions coupled with projected rapid obsolescence based on trends, fashions and market push forces has led to a growing over-flow of waste. Clothing is often disposed of with as much as 70% of its potential lifetime still left. Electronic Gadgets often disposed off due to a single point of failure when the failed part can simply be replaced or the remaining components can be salvaged and repurposed.

The Concept

We arrived at the concept by approaching the triad - Community, Environment and Technology.

Co-production as Building Community

Under community we looked at the concept of time banks and reciprocal altruism. We came up with a speculative concept of ‘space banks’. This led us to think about ‘shared spaces’. An interesting development is the rise of ‘makerspaces’ in recent years. These concepts were interesting case studies to analyze from the perspective of sharing. In makerspaces, ‘makers’ come together to create things, exchange ideas, skills and work together with little or no expectation of immediate monetary gain or transactional value. For a nominal fee makers can populate a shared space with shared resources, shared ideas and shared creations. We were interested in the idea of decoupling ownership and identity in community based sharing activities.

Environment As The Focus Of Sustainable Sharing

In a sustainable society, members feel more connected to their community, to each other and to their environment. What makes a society sustainable is the accomplishment of ‘positive behaviors’. Sharing is one such activity, that promotes positive behavior and close connection between people of a community, encouraging members to distribute resources in such a way that helps the society consume less and thus waste less.
Technology As An Enabler For Sharing

The Internet has democratized access to creation and distribution tools, blurring out the boundaries between the producers and consumers of the community. Internet enabled mobile phones have been a ubiquitous medium of communication among people, making it simple to collaborate and co-create.

The Solution

The concept ‘Regen’ attempts to unite the triad of Community, Environment and Technology, drawing from maker culture, upcycling and the Internet respectively. Regen is an Internet based community which encourages collaborative co-production of upcycled products by sharing raw materials and ideas.

Flash Screen

Home Screen with creative DIY projects
User can add new project, requirements or share an item

Projects can be searched using material or items

Step-by-Step DIY Process

The user can  share the item by clicking a photo of the items

Write Description of the item

The platform recommends the user to upcycle or make something by himself.

If the user does not want to make , he can search for other makers nearby to share the item. 

A message is sent to the maker, and then they can communicate and arrange for logistics

Possible Impact

Copyright © 2017 Kavya D