Art and Design, Vol. 2, Issue 3, Sep  2019, Pages 66-96; DOI: 10.31058/ 10.31058/

Introduction to: The Value of Living Systems Beyond a Price

Art and Design, Vol. 2, Issue 3, Sep  2019, Pages 66-96.

DOI: 10.31058/

Jelena Sučić 1,2* , Susu H. Nousala 2,3,4 , Pier Paolo Peruccio 1

1 DAD-Department of Architecture and Design, Politecnico di Torino, Torino, Italy

2 D&I-College of Design & Innovation, Tongji University, Shanghai, China

3 Department of Industrial Design, Wuhan University of Technology, Wuhan, China

4 Department of Architecture, Building and Construction, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia

Received: 26 March 2019; Accepted: 20 April 2019; Published: 5 May 2019

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Nowadays, the main topic on everybody’s lips, corporations’ and governments’ heads but also common citizens’, is “sustainability”. This term is often abused to capture attention but it can be understood only by defining the contextual structure of what is intended to be done for achieving a sustainable state or process. Core problems: human life and nature life distancing, which is creating a generational gap, proven by the population growth and movement towards cities. Our youth have never learnt to be in relation with life and other living systems, because they are already the result of being at least 3rd generation of a family that has moved from the countryside to the city. Who is going to transmit the knowledge, experiences and culture to the future population? How? Losing the perception of value of our basic needs what come strictly out of nature, in particularly plants, which are the primary producers in the world and our primary source of food. If we lose the knowledge and experience of obtaining things naturally, and the recognizance of this principle on wide scale and every age for generations we will not be able to sustain us from our natural resources, so our sustainment will remain unsustainable in relation with the entire living biosphere. Plants are organism that pre date human, are highly adaptive and reactive as we humans are. The only difference being is that we cannot provide for ourselves without them. Even if we think on technological solutions, we need a natural source for any synthesizing process we may plan to consider as solution, for example in terms of food: ‘Cultured Meat’ [1]. Out of these, is emerging that all our solutions are actually already in nature and plants because of their high reactivity and relation in living systems are the most sustainable technologies to solve our problems. The process and the approach shown in the following paper and case study scenario are explained through multidisciplinary, transdisciplinary, multicultural and multigenerational contributions, that are necessary for fundamental ways for shaping long-term relations between citizens and plants. This approach opens new dynamic potentials for re-establishing viewpoints when considering plants as living processes as sustainable technologies. This thinking is applicable at any scale and context, and will require new approaches to learning, creating in turn, new educational paradigms.


Sustainability, Sustainable Technologies, Plants, Citizens, Generational Knowledge, Educational Production, Life Processes, Natural Systems, Permaculture


© 2017 by the authors. Licensee International Technology and Science Press Limited. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


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