Sustainability in higher education: Achieving multidisciplinary collaboration through interior design processes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The value of interior design lies in its innate process for addressing the needs of people. As such, the education of future practitioners requires recognizing and enhancing the ways in which humans behave in various environments, while advocating for their overall health, safety and wellbeing. Centered on human connectedness, this educational approach can expand beyond the discipline to address larger issues, like sustainability. Spanning scale, audience, and medium, two distinct challenges were explored through interior design processes on one university campus as a means of engagement between students and stakeholders. The result was two unique, yet transferable, sustainable solutions: a community garden for a student housing complex and a video game for STEM education. Both focus on critical thinking initiated by interior design education and reveal that neither size or scope impact method. Emphasizing a participatory process over end product, these case studies highlight the value of applied design research for participants and affected partners through a culture of environmental and social sustainability.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Sustainability in Economic, Social, and Cultural Context
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Common Ground Research Networks, Rebekah Ison Radtke, Helen Turner, All Rights Reserved.


  • Collaboration
  • Design Education
  • Interior Design
  • Multidisciplinary

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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