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Beef Finland 2012 — A brief

In candidacy for Master of Arts, 10 April 2012

Candidate: Lee, Seungho Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture Department of Design Industrial and Strategic Design Programme Supervisor: Steinberg, Marco Director of Strategic Design The Finnish Innovation fund Sitra (Suomen itsenäisyyden juhlarahasto Sitra)

Abstract Climate change is one of the biggest challenges of this century. In 2007 IPCC projected that global warming during the 21st century would be ranged from 1.8 to 4.0 degrees. Consequently, the greenhouse gases locked in the permafrost will be released to the atmosphere, and radically accelerate global warming. The impact will spread into all aspects of human living, and ultimately it will alter the system of our society as a whole. Although there has been a lot of effort to mitigate global warming, it takes an enormous amount of time and capital to change the existing infrastructure in place. Luckily, it has become increasingly understood in recent years that cattle are responsible for more than 18 per cent of all greenhouse gas emission, which is much larger than all transportation worldwide — cars, buses, trains, and airplanes — combined. Gram to gram, grain-fed beef requires thirty-five calories for every calorie of beef produced not including the energy used in processing and transporting food, and with growing population beyond 7 billion the current trend of increasing demand on beef should stop. Beef among other meat also contributes to obesity, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, and cardiovascular diseases that are burdening households and the governments worldwide. In Finland, € 3.3 billion plus additional € 1.8 billion of the state budget of € 50 billion are spent for diabetes alone, most of which is spent for type 2 diabetes. Beef Finland 2012 is an attempt for reducing beef consumption worldwide, which may be one of the most affordable and effective solutions to both mitigate and adapt to the climate change, reduce other environmental impacts, and reduce the risk of persistent illnesses of global population. As a developed country uniquely positioned in-between Europe and Asia, Finland has much to offer to the world for alternatives. Given the harsh climate for agriculture, if Finland can reduce meat consumption, any European nation can do it. With its small, agile and well-integrated society Finland is optimal place for new societal experiments and exemplification. The association between beef the upcoming threats to humanity was closely investigated in introduction, and Design brief was chosen as the product in this thesis and therefore the preliminary research investigated various literature on design thinking, social science, and design brief. The aim is not to guilt or shame people, but provide alternatives that will give rise to a virtuous circle in systems, and consequently Behavioral Science and Systems Thinking are hired together as the approach. This thesis examines the structure of the problem of beef production and consumption both worldwide and in Finland. As results, a systems model of Finnish beef and dairy production and consumption is discovered as well as some 10 potential ideas. In conclusion, some possible applications of the design brief are discussed as well as the recommendations for future research.


Acknowledgement First I would like to thank my supervisor Marco Steinberg for his invaluable time, advice and support. For extra feedback and discussions, I would like to thank Bryan Boyer and Dan Hill for their critical advice on creating a brief, Justin Cook for introducing Thinking in Systems that has become a vital part of this thesis, and Aleksi Neuvonen and Outi Kuittinen for putting me in contact with right people and continuing support, indispensable advice and encouragement. This thesis could not have proceeded without the experts I’ve met along the way: Yi-Hyun Kang, Karlijn Souren, Sasu Laukkonen at Chef & Sommelier, Mariaana Nelimarkka & Christer Lindgren at Kielhuu, Toshiaki Hoshi at Hoshito, Tapani Parviainen at Aluehallintovirasto, Ville Tikka at WeVolve, Markus Vinnari at University of Eastern Finland, Aki Arjola at Eat & Joy, Tommi Kotiranta at Ravintola Zucchini, Taina Mikkonen at Evira, Antti Oksa at SOK, Miska Knapek at Aalto, Suvi Vuorinen at Helsingin Suomenkielinen Työväenopisto, Jaana Jussila and Ilmari Arnkil at Kipsari, Raija Kara at National Nutrition Council of Finland, Johanna Mäkelä and Kristiina Kainulainen at University of Helsinki, and Sirpa Kurppa, Jyrki Niemi, Raija Tahvonen at MTT. I am grateful to Peter McGrory for his encouragement to put myself in an unusual environment, which I am glad I did. I am also grateful to Turkka Keinonen for his indispensable advice on ‘design doing.’ I am thankful to Maija-Riitta Ollila who helped me explore and understand my scope in the beginning, which is always one of the hardest parts. Thanks Celia, Cindy, Da-Woon, Outi, Sanghyun, Seunghoon, Soeun, Tiina, Woojin, also for the extra help, advice and insights. I also would like to thank all the other supportive and encouraging staff and tutors of Aalto University, student colleagues and friends, especially Aila Laakso, Naoko Nakagawa, and Osse Federley. There must have been other random dialogues with other people and I am grateful for those as well. Not forgetting, much appreciation also goes to my family and friends for their encouragement. I cannot be more grateful to my best friend, soulmate and the love of my life, Hyunsun. I could not have survived the last stretch without you. 누구보다 늘 응원해주시는 어머니 아버지 그리고 장인 장모님께 감사드립니다.


6 6

Abbreviation CD Compact Disk

IUCN World Conservation Union

CIFOR Centre for International Forestry Research

JIG Joint Industry Guidelines for Young Marketing Professionals In Working Effectively With Agencies of UK

CO2 Carbon dioxide CO2-eq. Carbon dioxide equivalent CSS Cascading Style Sheets DEHKO Finnish National Programme for the Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes 2003-2010 FAO Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

JRC European Union Joint Research Centre LEAD Livestock, Environment and Development initiative of FAO MDP Meat and Dairy Product NGO Nongovernmental Organization NNR Nordic Nutrition Recommendations

GWP Global Warming Potential

NO2 Nitrous oxide

IES Institute for Environment and Sustainability, European Commission

THL Terveyden ja hyvinvoinnin laitos — The Finnish National Institute for Health and Welfare

IPSC Institute for the Protection and Security of the Citizen, European Commission

UNFCCC The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

IPCC Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

UNFPA The United Nations Population Fund

IPTS Institute for Prospective Technological Studies, European Commission

VRN Valtion ravitsemusneuvottelukunta — The National Nutrition Council of Finland

Contents Abstract3

Introduction: Beef 

Climate Change Popular Myths And Truths European Peculiarity Health, Food Security and Water Security Land Use Change, Soil Erosion, Biodiversity  Calorific Efficiency and Energy Use


10 12 13 14 16 17

Framework19 Stance on Design 20 Two Lenses 24 Scalable Solution With Strategic Potential 28 Demographics & Approach 29 Tool  33 Artefacts37

Methods39 Experts Interviews  Affinity Diagram

39 41

Findings43 Agriculture in Finland At A Glance 43 The Vicious Circle of Meat and Dairy 43 Unhealthy Nation, Soaring Costs 49 Metabolism50 Dietary Recommendation 51 Solutions in Action 52

Conclusion & Discussion


Appendix — Potential Ideas






High Medium Low




2012 7B


60 7.4

7 6














Global GHG Emission Source: EarthTrends, 2008 Using data from the Climate Analysis Indicators Tool (CAIT)

Waste 3% Manufacturing & Construction 11% Transportation 12% Other Energy Sector 13%

Electricity & Heat 27%

Agriculture, Forestry & Land-use Change 31%

Farm Animals 18%

Industrial Processes 3%


1961 1965 1969 1973 1977 1981 1985 1989 1993 1997 2001









0 1970









Introduction: Beef Global warming is one of the most difficult and important challenges before us: it has something to do with almost every the other critical challenges: overpopulation, health, water and food crises, pollution, hunger and poverty. As anthropogenic global warming continues the world will witness rapid extinction of species, loss of arable land, substantial declination of crop yield, and unpredictable weather change in the coming decades: it’s about survival of humanity. The seemingly more affordable and instantly effective area of opportunity both to mitigate and adapt to the climate change remains untapped. While the world is making every effort to alter the status quo of energy use, transportation and built environment what has been being overlooked is greenhouse gas(GHG) emission of food production, and that of animal products in particular. Livestock alone is responsible for more carbon dioxide equivalent(CO2eq.) GHG than all transportation worldwide combined. Moreover, increasing consumption of meat and dairy are largely contributing to persistent illnesses that keep families and governments socially and financially burdened in developed countries while the diet of developing countries are becoming increasingly similar to what is in the developed countries. The goal of the project is not to guilt, shame, or coerce, but provide the general public with alternatives, which will give rise to a virtuous circle of healthier diet for both our body and the environment. There are growing number of consumers — notably in London and Brooklyn — who grow own animals and learn the art of butchery. There also have been artists, nongovernmental organization(NGO)s, cities, and governments working hard to communicate the ramifications of eating dairy and animals flesh or force the citizenry to change their behavior. The the solution, however, is limited to the marginal demographic and the pace of change is far from what we need to overcome the challenge. Beef Finland 2012 is an attempt to comprehend the system and find out what reinforces the animal production and consumption, and offer leverage points for ways out. The world calls for a number of solutions that are easy to implement, which still embody systemic potential as a discreet solution will not solve the problem. The project explore the potential of design brief as a dynamically evolving agenda in an open innovation environment. The notorious difficulty of the problems of this sort is that no one owns them, they sit between different organizations and institutions, or even countries. Learning from and communicating with varied experts, a potential use of design brief as a tool for shared ownership will be explored.

Climate Change United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change(UNFCCC), an international treaty formed in 1992 for cooperation among countries, had once mainly focused mitigation. However, the importance and urgency of adaptation policy have gained collective interests recently as climate change has proven inevitable even if mitigation policy is on track. Recently UNFCCC has come to Cancun Agreements during 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference affirming that global average temperature will be at least 1.5 degrees higher than pre-industrial level. The Agreements was in fact based on the projection of the fourth assessment report of International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that projected global warming during the 21st century would be ranged from 1.8 to 4.0 degrees,1 which is even higher than what UNFCCC and Cancun Agreements stated. James E. Hansen, best known for his research in the field of climatology and global warming, says 5-10 years from 2012 will be the most critical time for us mankind to decide how harder it will be to address climate change, and therefore whether we will survive this century.2 Two strategies of the climate change policy The climate change policy today can be categorized into two strategies; mitigation and adaptation. While the effort to reduce greenhouse gases — mitigation — should be continued, the ecosystem including human society would have to seek ways to adjust to the changing climate and to avoid potential dangers from it — adaptation.3 The growing demand on beef is giving burden to global warming mitigation strategy and will continue to worsen the food crisis in near future and make the adaptation more difficult than already expected to be. Mitigation Deforestation around the Amazon particularly accelerates global warming and it is mainly resulted from cattle breeding expansion and soybean production. According to studies, 80% of deforestation of the Amazon is happening in Brazil and cattle ranching are the driving reason.4 Moreover, enteric fermentation from livestock ranching, especially cattle, is the most contributing source of methane that has 12 times higher greenhouse effect than carbon dioxide. Several studies estimate the amount of methane emitted from ruminants is larger than that from emission from coal mining, landfills, or even gas and oil industry,5 and therefore reducing demand on beef at large remains crucial to mitigate global warming. Adaptation It is estimated that about 15-40% of species will collapse with 2 ºC of warming, and the extinction rate will be an half of all species with 4 ºC. Additionally crop yield will decline 1 IPCC, Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Bases. Contribution of Working Group I to the Fourth Assessment Report, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2007, p.13 & pp. 539-542. 2 J Hansen, Why I must speak out about climate change, TED Conference 2012: Full Spectrum, Session 5: The Earth, retrieved 29 March 2012, <>. 3 J McCarthy, OF Canziani, NA Leary, DJ Dokken & KS White (ed.), Climate Change 2001: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2001 T Tanner & J Allouche, Towards a New Political Economy of Climate Change and Development, IDS Bulletin. 32 (3), 2011, pp. 1-14. 4 Y Malhi, JT Roberts, RA Betts, TJ Killeen, W Li & CA Nobre, ‘Climate Change, Deforestation, and the Fate of the Amazon’, Science, 319, 2008, pp. 169-172. 5

IPCC, loc. cit.


substantially as temperature rises over 2 ºC.1 Regarding that the temperature already has risen up by 0.8 ºC since 1850, human basic needs such as food and energy would be seriously threatened in the near future. The impact will spread into all aspects of human living, and ultimately it will alter the system of our society as a whole.

CH4 Food

Enteric fermentation

N2O* Manure Management

Manure Management















In a FAO report in 2006, Livestock’s Long Shadow, it is found that livestock are responsible for 18 percent of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, a share higher than that 400 contributed by all transportation.2 Total 350 In addition, livestock account for 37 percent of global emissions of 300 methane, a GHG with 23 times the 250 global warming potential (GWP) of 200 carbon dioxide, and 65 percent of 150 emissions of nitrous oxide(NO2), Livestock another powerful GHG with 298 100 Rice etc. Landfills times stronger impact ‘per unit 50 Biomass Burning weight’ than CO2 considered over Gas Supply 0 a 100-year period. Beef production Gas Flaring in particular appears to have greater impact on climate change than Global Anthropogenic Methane Emissions: 1860-1994, (Stern & Kaufmann) any other animal products. Approximate Percentage of Total

















































100 %

Non-CO2 GHG emissions associated with the production of various food items. Units are 106 CO2-eq yr−1, except column 63 *Sources: US Department of Energy4

It has already been six years after the aforementioned FAO report was published, and the figures widely accepted within the report seem to be somewhat conservative to what is being argued afterwards. In a paper published by a respected US thinktank, the Worldwatch Institute, two World Bank environmental advisers claimed that instead of 18 per cent of global

1 N Stern, The Economics of Climate Change: The Stern Review, Cambridge University Press, New York, 2007, pp. 65-68. 2 LEAD (Livestock, Environment and Development), Livestock’s Long Shadow: Environmental Issues and Options, FAO (Food and Agricultural Organization of the UN), Rome, 2006. 3

G Eshel & PA Martin, ‘Diet, Energy, and Global Warming’, Earth Interactions, Volume 10, Paper 9, 2005, p. 6.

4 US Department of Energy, Annual energy review 2003, Rep. DOE/EIA-0384(2003), Energy Information Administration, p. 390.


emissions being caused by meat, the true figure is 51 per cent.1 Robert Goodland, a former lead environmental adviser to the World Bank, and Jeff Anhang, a current adviser, suggested that domesticated animals cause 32 billion tons of CO2-eq., definitely much more than the impact of all transportation, and more than that of industry and energy. Goodland and Anhang argues ‘if this argument is right, it implies that replacing livestock products with better alternatives would be the best strategy for reversing climate change. In fact, this approach would have far more rapid effects on greenhouse gas emissions and their atmospheric concentrations than actions to replace fossil fuels with renewable energy.’ Other scientists are concerned about livestock’s exhalation of methane, which cows and other ruminants are responsible for 37 per cent of the world’s emission. The Independent reported that a study by Nasa scientists published in Science in 2009 found that methane has significantly more GWP than previously thought: 33 times more than carbon dioxide, compared with a previous factor of 25.2 The Vicious Circle of Global Warming The warming doesn’t happen equally to all the regions. The temperature at the poles is around 4 degrees Celsius warmer than pre-industrial levels — much higher compared to the global average of 0.8, which will melt away permafrost in polar regions, which will all the more accelerate global warming due to the darker color of the surface and potentially growing threat of bubbling methane in the Arctic Ocean and Siberian swamps. One day in 2007, on the plain in northern Alaska, a lightning strike set the tundra on fire. Historically, tundra, a landscape of lichens, mosses and delicate plants, was too damp to burn and no fire of that scale had occurred in the region in at least 5,000 years. But the climate in the area is warming and drying, and fires in both the tundra and forest regions of Alaska are increasing. Scientists say the fire thawed the upper layer of permafrost and set off what they fear will be permanent shifts in the landscape. Up to now, the Arctic has been absorbing carbon, on balance, and was once expected to keep doing so throughout this century. But recent analyses suggest that the permafrost thaw could turn the Arctic into a net source of carbon, possibly within a decade or two, and those studies did not account for fire.3

Popular Myths And Truths GHG Volume Myth Perhaprs global warming is such a phenomenon that ordinary citizenry have trouble to comprehend especially with some news articles that claim the reduction in greenhouse emissions for the whole of food consumption would be minor — from a mere 7% — even if everyone became vegan and so ate only fruit and vegetables. What is overseen in the news articles is the GWP of methane and NO2 measuring the GHG only by volume, that are at least 23 times 298 times stronger than CO2, respectively.

1 R Goodland & J Anhang, ‘Livestock and Climate Change: What if the key actors in climate change are cows, pigs, and chickens?’, World Watch, November/December 2009, Washington DC, 2009. 2 M Hickman, ‘Study claims meat creates half of all greenhouse gases’, The Independent, 1 November 2009, retrieved 28 November 2011, <>. 3 J Gillis, ‘As Permafrost Thaws, Scientists Study the Risks’, The New York Times, 16 December 2011, retrieved 6 April 2012, < >.


Organic And Local Meat Myth A great many people believe that the GHG emission of livestock mainly comes from industrialized production method and distribution. In fact, the majority methane and NO2 emission comes through flatulence, belch, and exhaling of livestock. Methane is created in cows’ stomachs by microbes digesting food. A recent study revealed a comprehensive audit of the GHG emissions of our meals by analyzing emissions such as transporting and producing fertiliser for crops, methane gas emitted by livestock, and food’s journey to market. The final step — food miles — added up to just 4% of a food’s greenhouse emissions, on average.1 Local and organic meat may be tastier and healthier, but doesn’t have much smaller impact to climate change. Science Breakthrough Myth Some believes that it will be possible to produce meat in laboratories without the necessity to raise cattle while others claim that we can eliminate GHG emission by altering the feed, giving pills or injecting chemical compound. However, given that the demand the global production of meat is projected to more than double in 20502 and unpredictable consequences of chemical compounds these approaches are highly unlikely to succeed. It is recently found that the oil of cashew shells, when added to cattle’s diet, may reduce a large fraction of the gas produced when cattle belch. What are not considered in the solution are the ever-growing global population and demand on meat and dairy, which reinforces to increase the number of cattle, and the destruction by exploding demand on cashew shells that are native to hot and humid climate like South America where the problem of deforestation is more serious and severe than any other region. With upwards of 1.5 billion heads of cattle in the world, it’s unlikely that current levels of cast-off shells would meet demands.3 In fact, altering feed to reduce GHG emission and to enhance the fatty acid composition of meat has been being studied by various scientists. In Finland grain-fed cows are given rapeseed oil press-cake is, however, only a mimicry of traditional, organic farming that provided animals with much poly-unsaturated fatty acid by feeding them of grass, and remain to reduce only marginal GHG emission.

European Peculiarity In Europe, where dairy consumption per capita is higher than any other region, meat consumption is not the only contributor to climate change. Total GHG fluxes of European livestock production including land use change emissions amount to 661 Metric Tonne(Mt) CO2-eq. 29% are from beef production, 193 Mt CO2eq (29%) from cow milk production and 165 Mt CO2eq (25%) from pork production, while all other animal products together do not account for more than 111 Mt CO2-eq (17%) of total emissions.4

Cow Milk 193 Mt 29%

Sheep and Goat Meat 24 Mt 4%

Pork 165 Mt 25%

Sheep and Goat Milk 12 Mt 2%

Beef 191 Mt 29 % Eggs 32 Mt 3%

Poultry 54 Mt 8%

EU Total Livestock GHG fluxes EU27: 661 Mt CO2-eq. Total GHG fluxes of EU-27 livestock production in 2004, calculated with a cradle-to-gate life- cycle analysis with CAPRI

1 C Weber & HC Matthew, ‘Food-Miles and the Relative Climate Impacts of Food Choices in the United States’, Environmental Science & Technology / Vol. 42, No. 10, 2008. 2

LEAD, loc. cit.


JR Patton, ‘Better Belching’, The Environmental Magazine, XIX. 5, September/October 2008, p. 24.

4 A Leip, F Weiss, T Wassenaar, I Perez, T Fellmann, P Loudjani, F Tubiello, D Grandgirard, S Monni & K Biala, Evaluation of the livestock sector’s contribution to the EU greenhouse gas emissions (GGELS), European Commis-


Health, Food Security and Water Security Health Let alone the manure found in burger patty — and the consequences of it such as Escherichia coli O157:H7 (E. Coli) — and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (mad cow disease), excessive meat and dairy consumption directly and indirectly contributes to obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis. A recent study in Harvard conducted by Pan et al.1 — an outcomes from more than 37,000 men from the Harvard Health Professionals FollowUp Study and more than 83,000 women from the Harvard Nurses Health Study who were followed up for almost 3 million person-years — shows that consumption of both processed and unprocessed red meat is associated with an increased risk of premature mortality from all causes as well as from cardiovascular disease and cancer. In a related study by Pan et al., red meat consumption was also associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus.2 The health risks from climate change are the topic of increasing research attention and policy development. According to by Lancet, the most respected peer-reviewed general medical journals, climate change is the biggest global health threat of the 21st century. ‘Health risks result from physical hazards, temperature extremes, effects on air quality, altered patterns of transmission of infectious diseases, and effects on food yields. Population displacement and conflict are also likely, because of various factors including food insecurity, desertification, sealevel rise, and increased extreme weather events.’3 Animal Diseases Outbreak and Food Security It is clear that the more we rely on animal products, the higher the chance to risk the food security. Factory farming is leading to health problems in the animals that are so closely packed together and pressures to cut costs are resulting in shortcuts being taken. The increase in phenomena like mad cow disease and aphtae epizooticae (foot-and-mouth or hoof-and-mouth disease) epidemic, largely starting in Britain but also seen in other places around the world is also a result of taking ‘short cuts’ in agriculture/food production.4 The world is using more antibiotics than ever that treats the intestinal infections that are routine in closely confined farm animals, and that calories that normally would have been consumed by the immune system were going instead to make bigger muscles and bones as much as 50%.5 Because many livestock farmers still routinely dose their animals with antibiotics, pathogens such as salmonella are becoming more resistance to antibiotics, thus harder to kill.6 Decades of heavy subtheraputic antibiotic use by livestock producers, which now accounts for

sion, Joint Research Centre, 2010, p. 18. 1 A Pan, Q Sun, AM Bernstein, MB Schulze, JE Manson, MJ Stampfer, WC Willett & FB Hu, ‘Red Meat Consumption and Mortality: Results From 2 Prospective Cohort Studies’, American Medical Association, doi: 10.1001/archinternmed.2011.2287. 2 A Pan, Q Sun, AM Bernstein, MB Schulze, JE Manson, WC Willett & FB Hu, ‘Red meat consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes: 3 cohorts of US adults and an updated meta-analysis’h. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2011;94(4):1088-1096. 3 AJ McMichael, JW Powles, CD Butler & R Uauy, ‘Food, livestock production, energy, climate change and health’, Lancet, 2007; 370: 1253-63, DOI:10.1016/501406736(07)61256-2. 4 E Schossler, Fast Food Nation; The Dark Side of the All-American Meal, Boston, Houghton Mifflin Company, New York, 2001, pp.197-202. 5

P Roberts, The End of Food, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing, New York, pp. 3-5.


Ibid., P. xvi.


nearly half of all antibiotics used worldwide, has produced numerous new strains of bacteria that are immune to entire classes of antibiotics, which means that some of the most common and inexpensive antibiotics can no longer treat humans infected by these resistant food-borne pathogens.1 The better answer to the pathogens that are gaining more and more resistance seem to be less concentrated production, and more importantly, less consumption rather than breakthrough, stronger antibiotics. Water Scarcity Seckler et al stated already in 1999 that ‘nearly 1.4 billion people, amounting to a quarter of the world’s population, or a third of the population in developing countries, live in regions that will experience severe water scarcity within the first quarter of the this century. Slightly more than one billion people live in arid regions that will face absolute water scarcity by 2025. About 348 million more people face severe economic water scarcity. They live in regions where the potential water resources are sufficient to meet reasonable water needs by 2025, but they will have to embark on massive water development projects, at enormous cost and possibly severe environmental damage, to achieve this objective.’2 Virtual water refers to the water used in the production of a good or service. Hoektra et al.3 made a comprehensive table of virtual water content of a few selected products that clearly shows the larger virtual water by livestock. Hoekstra & Hung (2003)*

Chapagain & Hoekstra (2003)*

Zimmer & Renault (2003)**

Oki et al. (2003)***




15 977

13 500

20 700

16 726



5 906

4 600

5 900

5 469



5 288



5 288



2 828

4 100


3 809



4 657

2 700


3 519


2 656


1 400


2 552


2 300


Egypt: 2 750


2 517


1 150


1 160


1 437






1 020













Virtual water content of a few selected products in m3/ton. Estimates by different authors *The figures given represent global averages. ** Unless stated otherwise, the data refer to a study for California. *** Data refer to Japan.

The aforementioned FAO report affirms4 that ‘the livestock business is among the most damaging sectors to the earth’s increasingly scarce water resources, contributing to water pollution, 1

Ibid., p. 185.

2 D Seckler, D Molden & R Barker, Water Scarcity in the Twenty-First Century, International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Colombo, 1999. 3 AY Hoekstra (Ed), Virtual Water Trade Proceedings of the International Expert Meeting on Virtual Water Trade, Value of Water Research Report Series No. 12, IHE Delft, Delft, 2003. 4

LEAD, loc. cit.


eutrophication and the degeneration of coral reefs. The major polluting agents are animal wastes, antibiotics and hormones, chemicals from tanneries, fertilizers and the pesticides used to spray feed crops. Widespread overgrazing disturbs water cycles, reducing replenishment of above and below ground water resources. Significant amounts of water are withdrawn for the production of feed.’

Land Use Change, Soil Erosion, Biodiversity Cattle raising has been criticized for its role in the destruction of tropical forests. Hundreds of thousands of acres of tropical forests in Brazil, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Honduras, to name just a few countries, have been leveled to create pasture for cattle. According to other studies, 80% of deforestation of the Amazon is happening in Brazil and cattle ranching are the driving reason.1 Since most of the forest is cleared by burning, the extension of cattle pasture also creates carbon dioxide and contributes significantly to global warming.2 The annual rate of deforestation in the Amazon region has continued to increase from 1990 to 2003 because of factors at local, national, and international levels.3 70% of formerly forested land in the Amazon, and 91% of land deforested since 1970, is used for livestock pasture.4 According to the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) between 1990 and 2001 the percentage of Europe’s processed meat imports that came from Brazil rose from 40 to 74 percent and by 2003 for the first time ever, the growth in Brazilian cattle production, 80 percent of which was in the Amazon was largely export driven.5 The aforementioned FAO report also affirms that raising animals for food — including land used for grazing and land used to grow feed crops — now uses one third of the Earth’s land mass. A major environmental concern known as topsoil erosion occurs when the topsoil layer is blown or washed away. Without topsoil, little plant life is possible. Industrial farming encourages the depletion of topsoil because the soil must be plowed and replanted each year for feed production. We are in an era of unprecedented threat to biodiversity. The loss of species is estimated to be running 50 to 500 times higher than background rates found in the fossil record.6 15 out of 24 important ecosystem services are assessed to be in decline.7 Conservation International has identified 35 global hot-spots for biodiversity, characterized by exceptional levels of plant endemism and serious levels of habitat loss, of which 23 are reported to be affected by livestock production.8 An analysis of the authoritative World Conservation Union (IUCN), Red List of Threatened Species, shows that most of the world’s threatened species are suffering habitats

1 Y Malhi, JT Roberts, RA Betts, TJ Killeen, W Li & CA Nobre, ‘Climate Change, Deforestation, and the Fate of the Amazon’, Science, 319, 2008, pp.169-172. 2

R Robbins, Global Problems and the Culture of Capitalism, Allyn and Bacon, Boston, 1999, p. 220.

3 KR Kirby, WF Laurance, AK Albernaz, G Schroth, PM Fearnside, S Bergen, EM Venticinque & CD Costa, ‘The future of deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon’, Futures of Bioregions, 38, 2006, pp. 432-453. 4 S Marglis, ‘Causes of Deforestation of the Brazilian Amazon’, World Bank Working Paper, No. 22, The World Bank, 2004. 5 D Kaimowitz, B Mertens, S Wunder & P Pacheco, Hamburger Connection Fuels Amazon Destruction: Cattle ranching and deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon, Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), 2004, p. 3. 6

LEAD, loc. cit.


LEAD, ibid.


LEAD, ibid.


loss where livestock are a factor.1 This is still happening everywhere in the world, especially in South America,2 while the population and demand on beef keep growing.

Calorific Efficiency and Energy Use World Population and Calorific Efficiency The world population is 7 billion today, and there will be as many as 10 billion in the world in near future.3 Moreover, we are getting 4.2 million more every single month on this planet, which is approximately 10 more whole Finnish population annually. All things considered, calorific efficiency and energy use in terms of food supply comes into play in a very significant way for the welfare of future generations.


100 x

100 x

100 x kcal input


kcal outputc

kcal totalb

kcal proteina Food Item

kcal protein

kcal input













Beef (Grain fed)




















Salmon (Farmed)

























Energetic efficiencies for a few representative food items derived from land animals, aquatic animals, and plants4 A. Energy input refers to fossil fuels5 B. Assuming 1 gram protein = 4 kcal and using U.S. Department of Agriculture (2005) value C. For animal products, the product of the previous two columns


LEAD, ibid.

2 S Romero, ‘Vast Tracts in Paraguay Forest Being Replaced by Ranches’, The New York Times, 25 March 2012 , retrieved 25 March, <>. 3 B Crossette, R Kollodge, R Froseth, W Haug, A Toure, S Wong, R Kollodge & R Puchalik, The State of World Population 2011: People and Possibilities in a World of 7 Billion, Information and External Relations Division, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), New York. 4

G Eshel & PA Martin, ‘Diet, Energy, and Global Warming’, Earth Interactions, Vol. 10, Paper No. 9, 2005, p. 6.

5 D Pimentel, and M Pimentel, Energy use in livestock production. Food, Energy and Society, University Press of Colorado, 1996, pp. 77-84.


Grain-fed beef requires thirty-five calories for every calorie of beef produced not including the energy used in processing and transporting food.1 Given the current animal farming practices are highly dependant on synthetic fertilizer made out of natural gas, the calorific efficiency will be increasingly important as the fossil fuel is depleting. Fossile Fule Usage The biggest share of fossil fuel usage in industrial farming is not transporting food or fueling machinery, but chemicals. As much as forty percent of energy used in the food system goes towards the production of artificial fertilizers and pesticides.2 Fertilizers are synthesized from atmospheric nitrogen and natural gas, a process that takes a significant amount of energy. Producing and distributing them alone requires an average of 5.5 gallons of fossil fuels per acre3 — approximately 1 liter for every 200 square meter. Manure could be a more energy-efficient alternative to synthetic fertilizers, but because it is heavy this applies only when it can be used a short distance from where it is produced — and our industrial system precludes this option.4 The problem is over-consolidation: We raise large numbers of livestock in one place and raise the grain they eat in other places. This means that the livestock produce an excess of manure where there’s no cropland for it to be spread on, making it a pollutant rather than a tool. Meanwhile, the fields that grow feed must draw their fertility from synthetic sources.5 We end up with concentrations of unusable manure in one place, and concentrations of chemical fertilizers in the other — and a whole lot of fuel wasted trucking feed and fertilizer around the country.

1 L Horrigan L, ‘How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture’, Environmental Health Perspectives, 110, no. 5, 2002 2 MC Heller, AK Gregory, Life Cycle-Based Sustainability Indicators for Assessment of the U.S. Food System. Ann Arbor, MI: Centre for Sustainable Systems, University of Michigan, 2000, p. 40. 3 R Manning, ‘The Oil We Eat: Following the Food Chain Back to Iraq’, Harper’s, 23 July 2004, retrieved 20 March 2012, <>. 4 C Heeter, ‘The Oil in Your Oatmeal: A Lot of Fossil Fuel Goes into Producing, Packaging and Shipping Our Breakfast’, San Francisco Chronicle, 26 March 2006, retrieved 29 March 2012, <>. 5 K Clancy, Greener Pastures: How Grass-fed Beef and Milk Contribute to Healthy Eating, Union of Concerned Scientists, Cambridge, 2006, p. 13.

d Vision

Model 3 - The Bridge and the World

Framework Solution

s (descriptive)

Systems Thinking

Final - Inception

The framework for Beef Finland 2012 stems from the perception that design is a creative problem solving discipline whether or not it deals with aesthetics or tangible object. The framework of the project, therefore, embraces different disciplines within and outside the field of design. Systems thinking is employed as the project seeks to ask right questions to get rid of the root cause rather than to resolve only the symptom, the latter of which is likely to end up creating just another problem — or even worse, more problems. Behavioral science is hired to offer alternatives that are more sensible to choose consumers and better for health and the environment. Together, Systems thinking and behavioral science were employed to offer a ground for scalable solutions that are easy to implement with systemic potential. Design brief, a tool to structure the problem rather than a single discreet Brief is called differently in different creative solution, is decided as the outcome of the thesis. Conventionally we de- industry or by people: challenge brief, project brief, design brief, innovation brief, job ticket, signers embark on a project to answer to a question given — whether it is creative brief and treatment written form as a brief or just verbally — by a clientele. More often than not, we find ourselves in awkward circumstances where we are working to devise right answers to wrong questions: sometimes the problem is just poorly understood or perhaps ill-framed due to the limitation determined by expertise of the client and so on. By creating a brief together with diverse stakeholders all aspects of a problem can be considered and the challenges can be aptly framed. Perhaps the biggest challenges in solving the problems of increasing meat and dairy consumption are that no single entity owns the problems and no one is eloquent to devise solutions since they sit between disciplines, and between institutions, organizations or even countries. The brief will also work as a tool to evaluate the progress and dynamically update the agenda. The scope is confined to Finland as each country has different set of constraints such as climate, culture, policy and so on. As the world is continuum — that is to say that everything is interconnected — one can make a mistake to set unlimited scope which uaually result in jeopardy. Actively exploring both problem space and opportunity space and communicating with diverse experts in Finland, a set of artifacts are created as dynamically evolving brief for an open innovation. Finally, Beef Finland 2012 is not a campaign, but a project that works with any of the experts and the general public to increase consumption of alternatives than meat and dairy because a campaign, while being a certainly very important part of education to the general public, cannot reach the ignorant critical mass.


Stance on Design While studying in Industrial and Strategic Design Programme at Aalto University I have been having hard time to communicate what I mean by “design” to friends and families. Conversation to conversation, apparently it seemed we designers have been largely marginalized as stylists or inventors at best — pushed further down the process chain rather than going upstream where our work can tackle the big picture challenges. As design can be an illusive — if not embezzling — term and it may cause confusion, I shall clarify what I mean by design and strategic design. Design has long been considered a problem solving discipline since the Industrial Revolution. Mass production: we’ve become able to produce goods that existed for long — like textile and plates — in ever-larger quantity with new means of production. The industry faced a problem and required people who can give new shapes to products that are desirable to their customers, technologically feasible, and economically viable to the business1. By the beginning of 20th century design faced a new sets of problems: how to give shapes to products that never existed before. Toaster, radio, TV, and washing machine were newly introduced and to be designed interesting, desirable, affordable, easy, and safe. From 1930’s more advanced corporations began to compete with brand propositions, where design has faced a new set of challenges. Over time, design has evolved embracing anything required — usability, material science, cognitive science, ergonomics, ethnography — to solve the problems before us.

Why is our programme’s name so long? Once professor Turkka Keinonen at Aalto University jokingly answered to that question by saying ‘we are called “Industrial and Strategic Design Programme” because we embraced everything which other programmes did not want to.’ I thought it was a proper explanation. Actually, now I am not even sure if he was joking — at least he was smiling.

Now, if I scrape away the seemingly deserved look-and-feel aspect of design from designing, what’s left is creative, yet restless endeavor and effort to solve problems before us whether it’s industrial, interaction, experience, service, or critical design all in addition to design thinking. Ultimately, design is a creative, problem solving discipline whether or not each individual project deals with aesthetics. The modern society is now beginning to see that the most critical challenges we face are also the ones which are mote interconnected or systemic in nature, which calls for another embracement in design discipline. Design Thinking and Upstream Design thinking, one of the leading topics of design discourse in recent years, is perplexing and troubling due to the lack of a good definition particularly with regard to what separates a design thinker from a good designer. Some sees the energy put into supporting design thinking as two matters that are confusingly grouped under one name: a renovation of the definition of what it means to be a good designer to include systems and strategies as well as enhanced skills in observation, analysis, and communication; recognition that the best way to increase the standing of design in the eyes of non-designers — potential clients — is to educate them through exposure to our process.2 Although I agree with much of the criticality toward design thinking and growing suspicion on brain-storming3 — that is a cornerstone of design thinking — the literatures by Martin

1 T Brown, Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation, Harper Business, New York, 2009, pp. 15-21. 2 B Boyer, ‘Changing the Definition of Design’, Of This We Are Sure, 6 February 2010, retrieved 11 November 2011, <>. 3 J Lehrer, ‘Brainstorming Doesn’t Really Work’, The New Yorker, 30 January 2012, retrieved 6 March 2012, <>.


and Brown share some useful common ground to tackle today’s big picture challenges: Embracing of both ends of modes in problem solving — analytical thinking and intuitive thinking and going upstream. In his book, The Design of Business, Martin introduces ‘abductive logic’1 a borrowed term from an American philosopher Charles Sanders Peirce (1839-1914) to explain the logic of design thinking. Abductive logic is the combination of two dominant forms of logic — deductive logic and inductive logic, both of which have been reasoning tools of immense power for science, but incomplete when separated. Yet, abductive logic in design thinking is far from imagination or hunch on intuitive thinking: it’s the balance of analytical thinking and intuitive thinking.

Desirability Viability Balance Feasibility

Upstream Abductive thinking?

Model 1 – Upstream

Analytical, design, intuitive thinking — a table created based on The Design of Business Analytical thinking

Design thinking

Intuitive thinking

Deductive Logic

Inductive Logic

Abductive Logic

Imagination, hunch

What must be

What is operative

Logical leaps of the mind

What can be

General to specific

Specific to General

100% Reliability

50/50 mix — Balance

100% Validity

Forecasting, reasoning, data from the past, mastery

Back and forth

Backcasting, intuition, feeling, hypotheses about the future, originality

Refinement, exploitation


Creation, exploration

Short-term benefit


Long-term benefit

Long-term risk

None (goal)

Short-term risk

Martin argues that designers “live in Peirce’s world of abduction,” and further urges to look upstream for a more powerful route.2 Brown also suggests that ‘design thinkers needs to move upstream, closer to the executive suites where strategic decisions are made’3 and ‘design thinkers will connect the upstream with the downstream.’4

Systems Thinking

Dynamically moving from the current knowledge to the next Behavioural Science

Exploration with hunches

To posit what could possibly be true


Back and forth

To declare a conclusion to be true or false, systematically honing and refining within the current knowledge

Model 3 - The Br

Both Martin and Brown fail to deliver, however, what designers can do to move to upstream. Suggested principles of design thinking — user-centered research, brainstorming, analogous observation, prototyping5 — don’t seem to bring us that far. The Bus Schedule, Not The Building The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra — or Suomen itsenäisyyden juhlarahasto in Finnish — held a conversational event ‘Helsinki Design Lab Global 2010: Government Meets Design’6 Behavioural Science


Shared Vision


1 R Martin, The Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage, Harvard Business Press, Boston, 2009, p. 63. Model 4 - Lenses (descriptive) 2 Ibid., p. 68. 3

Brown, op.cit., p. 37.


Ibid., p. 229.


Ibid., p. 224.


HDL 2010 Global, retrieved 22 March 2012, <>.

Systems Thinking


amongst a diverse group of 120 peers in Helsinki.1 Marco Steinberg, Director of Strategic Design at Sitra, opened the event by engaging the audience with an anecdote. ‘Upon noticing that the patronage of a local swimming pool had fallen unexpectedly, local councillors went to the scene to investigate. They found a dilapidated building, with broken windows and outdated facilities. The problem was clear; people were no longer using the pool because it was too old and tired. Naturally, a new building was the answer. ... Or so they thought. The architects commissioned to redesign the facility found in their research another cause which the councillors had overlooked: the bus schedule had been revised to make getting to the pool incredibly inconvenient. The problem wasn’t the building, but the system of transportation that this building was serviced by.’2 A video that explains the activities of Helsinki Design Lab, a strategic design initiative of Sitra contrast the conventional and strategic design with following diagram.3


Point of involvement of conventional design Solution



Point of involvement of strategic design


Conventional problem solving and strategic design, reinterpreted based on the aforementioned video

If one considers a design solution to be the result of consecutive decision making, it is conceivable that the design work — or designing — has already embarked on when the councillors made the decision to build a new building. The architect could create a radically different solution by re-framing the problem rather than working to answer to the wrong problem — resisting the given assumption and going upstream. Yet, whether Martin and Brown meant the aforementioned point by “upstream” remains unclear. Wicked Problems How such problems such as excessive consumption of meat and dairy should be treated and framed still remain unanswered. Rittel and Webber in 1973 explored the wicked problem of servicing as social professionals. ‘A great many barriers keep us from perfecting an idealized planning/governing system: theory

1 The 120 includes Alejandro Aravena, Executive Director of Elemental (Chile), John Beard, Director of Aging and Life Course, World Health Organization (Switzerland), Tyler Brûlé, editor-in-chief of Monocle Magazine (UK), Pat Cox, President of the European Movement; former President of the European Parliament (Ireland), Ken Friedman, Dean of Design at Swinburne University of Technology (Australia), Dan Hill, Urban Informatics Leader at Arup (Austrailia), Kigge Hvid, CEO of INDEX (Denmark), Lorraine Justice, Director at School of Design, Hong Kong Polytechnic, Nick Mabey, Chief Executive of E3G — Third Generation Environmentalism(UK), Joe Osae-Addo CEO of Construct (Ghana), Rosanne Haggerty, President and founder of Common Ground (US), LaSalle Leffall, Chair of President’s Cancer Panel (US), Marianne Guldbrandsen, Design Council (UK), Jussi Pajunen, Mayor of the City of Helsinki, Darrel Rhea, CEO of Cheskin Added Value, Eric Rodenbeck, founder & creative director of Stamen and Jan Vapaavuori, Minister of Housing (Finland) and Alan Webber, co-founder of Fast Company magazine and former Editor in Chief of Harvard Business Review (US). 2 R Hyde, ‘The Bus Schedule, Not The Building’, Helsinki Design Lab, 3 September 2010, retrieved 29 March 2012, <>. 3

About HDL, retrieved 24 March 2012, <>.


is inadequate for decent forecasting; our intelligence is insufficient to our tasks; plurality of objectives held by pluralities of politics makes it impossible to pursue unitary aims; and so on ... One reason the publics have been attacking the social professions, we believe, is that the cognitive and occupational styles of the professions — mimicking the cognitive style of science and the occupational style of engineering — have just not worked on a wide array of social Desirability problems.’1 Viability

One notable emphasis Rittel and Webber make is that social problems are Balance 2 never solved, but resolved at best. They continue to state ‘the information Feasibility Upstream needed to understand the problem depends upon one’s idea for solving Solution it ... in order to describeAbductive a wicked-problem in sufficient detail, one has Problem thinking? to develop an exhaustive inventory of all conceivable solutions ahead of time3,’ which brings a new perspective to the perception of upstream: To 1 – Upstream Model 2 – Resolution solve societal problems such Model as climate change or excessive consumption of meat and dairy in particular are not linear but endless update between analysis and solution. Rittel and Webber continue to contrast “benign problem” and “wicked problem,” which is well in line with “analytical thinking” and “abductive thinking” presented by Martin. What is also notable here is that Rittel and Webber stress that there is no try and error in solving wicked problem as they have indefinite impact, which naturally leads to systems thinking.

Evaluation Formulation Time frame for solving Test and try

Social professions, planners • Societal problems • Poverty problem • Deficient mental treatment Solution

• Chess player’s attempt to checkmate in five moves • Solving Equation in mathematics • Analysing structure of unknown compound in chemistry

Systems Thinking


Engineer, scientist Behavioural Science


Wicked problem



Benign problem

“Benign”, tame, clear whether or not the problems have been solved, docility

“Wicked”, malignant, vicious, tricky, aggressive

Correct or false

Good or bad




Indefinite world

Yes, learn by trial-and-error

No, one shot operation, every attempt counts significantly

Singe definition


Single solution



Immediate, ultimate





No Model 3 - The Bridge and the World No

A partial summary of Dilemmas in a general theory planning

Solution Behavioural Systems Shared Vision 1 HWJScience Rittel and MM Webber, ‘Dilemmas in a general theory planning’, ThinkingPolicy Science, 4, 155-169, Elsevier Problem Scientific Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1973, p. 160 (republished as a part of N Cross, Development in Design Methodology, John Wiley & Sons Ltd, Chichester, 1984) 2

Ibid., p. 160.


Ibid., p. 161.

Model 4 - Lenses (descriptive)

Final - Inception


Two Lenses Systems Thinking — A Bird’s Eye View In Meadows’ book Thinking in Systems,1 the content explains the basic principles of systems thinking that is the process of understanding how interconnected elements or parts influence one another within a whole, which produces their own pattern of behavior over time. Examples of systems include digestive system of an animal in which teeth, enzymes, stomach, and intestines function after one another to breakdown food into basic nutrients and to transfer those into bloodstream while discarding unusable wastes, human body in which smaller systems like digestive system, bloodstream, and nervous system work together, ecosystems in which various elements such as air, water, plants, and animals interact to survive or perish, and organizations in which people, structures, hardware, processes, and culture are intertwined and interact with each other for a shared mission. So is school, ‘a city, a factory, and a corporation, and a national economy.’2 A system must consist of three things — elements, interconnections, and a function of purpose — but it is more than just the sum of its parts. It goes on to emphasize that changing elements — players, coach, ball, football field — has least impact in a system much but the interconnections — coach’s strategy, football rules, teamwork or personal chemistry — have more impact and function or purpose — to have fun and get exercise, to win the game in a global competition — have a major impact.3 We are also a part of a system if we play a role in it. Consider what we do when the holiday cottage is freezing. We turn the heater on but it takes long until the room becomes comfortably warm. So we put the heater a lot hotter as the kids are freezing, and it is highly likely that we will open the windows to cool the too-hot-air inside. Another way to make it warmer, though this may take a little more effort, is to check the windows and redo the insulation to prevent the loss of heat. In this example, we have seen some of the most important aspects of systems thinking: stock, flow, feedback, delay, fluctuation, and dynamic equilibrium. ‘Stock’, here, was the temperature while ‘flow’ was the heat provided by the heater and lost through the windows. As the ‘feedback’ was delayed we could not feel the room warming up as quickly as we wanted, and our behavior to balance between the actual temperature and the desired one caused irregular rising and falling of temperature,‘fluctuation’, by putting the heater a lot hotter and opening the window. At some point, we may see ‘dynamic equilibrium’ only if the added warmth and the loss of heat become equal. What we have not seen in this example is ‘purpose.’ What if the purpose was not to make the room quickly warmer, but to keep the kids happy and prevent them from catching a cold? One could set the heater at a moderate power, and get out to make snowman while the room is getting warmer. By changing the goal and provide multiple solutions we can avoid fluctuation. Meadows goes on and offer leverage points — or places to intervene in a system — and guidelines — or systems wisdoms for problem solvers.4

1 DH Meadows & D Wright (Ed.) Thinking in Systems: A Primer, Sustainability Institute, Chelsea Green Publishing, Vermont, 2008. 2

Ibid., p. 11.


Ibid., pp. 12-16.


Ibid., pp. 145-185.

FRAMEWORK 25 LEVERAGE POINTS — PLACES TO INTERVENE IN A SYSTEM In increasing order of effectiveness 12. Numbers Constants and parameters such as subsidies, taxes, and standards may be effective leverage in the short term, but not in the long term without altered purpose or goal or of a system — consider increased in tax rate in a corrupt government 11. Buffers The sizes of stabilizing stocks relative to their flows — this is why we have savings, but it may deteriorate flexibility if it becomes to big 10. Stock-and-flow structures Physical systems and their nodes of intersection is usually set by the physicality that is mostly the slowest and most expensive change to make, and therefore the leverage is in understanding the limitations and bottlenecks 9. Delays The lengths of time relative to the rates of system changes — a system can’t respond to short-term changes when it has long-term delays due to the information structure that is largely centralized or inefficiently structured 8. Balancing feedback loops The strength of the feedbacks relative to the impacts they are trying to correct — the ability of one’s body to sweat or shiver to maintain the temperature at a right level is not used often but critical to the long-term welfare of a system, which often can be confused by introduction of price, taxes, subsidy leverages 7. Reinforcing feedback loops The strength of the gain of driving loops can be both bad or good, but mostly vicious. Slowing down, weaken the reinforcing feedback loop can be hindering the growth of a part but is beneficial for the health of the whole 6. Information flows The structure of who does and does not have access to information, or which sorts of information become exposed to the actors, players or general public is decisive 5. Rules Incentives, punishments, constraints 4. Self-organization The power to add, change, or evolve system structure by helping the entities that constitute a system diversify 3. Goals The purpose of the system 2. Paradigms The mind-set out of which the system — its goals, structure, rules, delays, parameters-arises 1. Transcending paradigms No paradigm is true, and therefore one needs to constantly look to discover or invent a new paradigm that will transcend the status quo

GUIDELINES — SYSTEMS WISDOMS Get the beat of the system One cannot control the world through systems thinking or tools but dance with the rhythm of a system by closely observe its behaviour over time Expose your mental models to the light of day No systems model is complete and therefore one needs to share a systems model to as many people as possible and get it amended and enhanced Honor, respect, and distribute information Information is powerful, effective and efficient flow that can create surprisingly large and lasting impact Use languages with care and enrich it with systems concept Carefully chosen words for communication can be much more powerful and help comprehend systems easier than it otherwise be Pay attention to what is important, not just what is quantifiable Qualitative measures such as bias, happiness, morality sometimes should be evaluation criteria though can be challenging to quantify Make feedback policies for feedback systems A dynamic, self-adjusting feedback system cannot be governed by a static, unbending policy, and therefore designing a flexible and reactive or even proactive policy is clever thing to do Go for the goodness of the whole The whole is always at a higher hierarchy than sub-systems and therefore has more overarching impact Listen to the wisdom of the system Looking into the history of the system within one strives to solve a problem can often be very useful Locate responsibility within the system Shared responsibility often calls for no responsibility as the common is not maintained by any entity and therefore giving individual entities responsibility to own and take care of is a good idea Stay humble — stay a learner Celebrate complexity The universe is not a neat being and embracing its complexity, diversity, uncertainty is a good attitude when approaching a problem Defy disciplines Solving problems within a discipline is becoming increasingly impossible and therefore it is a good idea to follow wherever the system leads and work with experts in diverse areas Expand the boundary of caring Expand time horizons It is stupid to keep heads down while walking along a unknown, surprising, obstacle-strewn path, but it will be equally foolish to peer far ahead and never notice what’s under the feet — both the short-term and the long-term — the whole system — should be considered Don’t erode the goal of goodness


Choice Architecture — An Ant’s Eye View Since Norman’s landmark literature, The Psychology Of Everyday Things, psychology, along with cognitive science and anthropology, has become a cornerstone of industrial design — or any discipline in design. Norman, in the aforementioned book, is almost angry to the media and society that turns the blame of accidents to humans — a plane crush by pilot error or a nuclear power plant disaster by operator error or more simply people keep pushing a door that is supposed to be pulled — not ‘equipment failure coupled with serious design error1’. Norman appropriated affordance, a term coined by James J. Gibson, in the context of humanmachine — or human-design — interaction to refer to action possibilities that are readily perceivable by a user. He emphasize that ‘humans do not always err’2 and it’s the affordance of design that cause error and that we designers should be aware of errors people usually make and take them into account.3 Thaler and Sunstein’s book Nudge is critical of the homo economicus (econs) view of human beings “that each of us thinks and chooses unfailingly well, and thus fits within the textbook picture of human beings offered by economists,’4 which is well in line with Norman’s argument — they actually refer to Norman.5 ‘Humans’, unlike ‘econs’, often make wrong choices, which can be avoided by understanding ourselves and creating carefully planned ‘choice architecture.’6 In their book, Nudge, Sunstein and Thaler use a seemingly contradictory combination of words to call this viewpoint — libertarian paternalism — and argue that it would be wise to nudge people in the right direction. This is not to force anyone, but to help make better choices ‘since it is often impossible to avoid picking some option as the default.’7 The fundamental idea of welfare in capitalism has been to create as many options as possible for choices so that econs can choose what best-fits their interests. As it turns out, however, people do not always make right choices — otherwise we wouldn’t have as many obese patients as we do now, which is fast-becoming social problem worldwide. One picks up another muffin not seeing the consequences today as well as being ‘accepted’ by his overweight family members and therefore increase the chance to become obese. In this example we saw temptation, delayed feedback, and social acceptance — some of many reasons why we may make wrong choices. One of the primary suggestion is to leverage the tendency of people postponing important decision and making last-minute choice without much consideration. One example is the Save More Tomorrow Plan which Thaler developed back in 1996 as an employer sponsored retirement plan for employees. Instead of presenting the details and asking employees to sign-up to increase their savings each time they get a pay raise, the plan presented the details and asked employees to simply tick a box if they wished to automatically increase their savings if their pay went up in the future as a pre-commitment. Such scheme offers the same free choice, though with a different default, and helps individuals and the society have better future at the same time.8 1

DA Norman, The Psychology of Everyday Things, New York: Basic Books, 1988, p. vii.

2 Ibid. 3

Ibid., pp. 105-140.

4 RH Thaler & CR Sunstein, Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness, Penguin Group, London, 2008, p. 6. 5

Ibid., p. 85.


Ibid., pp. 1-14.

7 Ibid. 8

Ibid. pp. 105-119.

FRAMEWORK 27 SIX PRINCIPLES OF CHOICE ARCHITECTURE1 Incentives Who uses, who chooses, who pays and who profits matter and therefore it is wise to devise incentives that benefit the more effective player Understand mappings A good system of choice architecture helps people to improve their ability to map and hence to select options that will make them better off Defaults It is inevitable for all choices to have a default option which influences the choices of the majority

Give feedback Giving right feedback at right times tremendously helps people evaluate their choice Expect error Error is inevitable and therefore choice architects should take that into consideration Structure complex choices More often than not making choices can be complex — not complicated — and by clearly structuring them helps understanding and choose the given choices step by step

Unlike The Psychology Of Everyday Things being the landmark literature in the realm of design Nudge has got mixed reception. Jean Hannah Edelstein at the Guardian described it as ‘never intimidating, always amusing and elucidating: a jolly economic romp but with serious lessons within.’2 while Elizabeth Kolbert writing for The New Yorker held reservations that some of the book’s conclusions ‘raises some pretty awkward questions’ and asks ‘if the nudgee can’t be depended on to recognize his own best interests, why stop at a nudge? Why not offer a push, or perhaps even a shove?’3 In July 2011, a subgroup of the UK House of Lords Science and Technology Committee concluded a year-long review of behavioral change based on 148 written submissions and evidence from 70 witnesses, which was led by Baroness Neuberger. In an interview with The Guardian newspaper Neuberger argues that we ‘need more than just nudge ... Behavioral change interventions appear to work best when they’re part of a package of regulation and fiscal measures ... all politicians love quick fixes ... one of the problems with all of this is if you really want to change people’s behavior it takes a very long time … you have to look at a 20- to 25-year span before you get a full change of behavior.’4 Clearly Nudge alone is not enough to win a societal change at large — it is as if a better remote control can make one’s living room much more comfortable. Nudges can be only effective being coupled with big picture change such as policy or regulations. What shall be critically understood in behavioral science, however, is that no policy will actually work without understanding ‘humans’ who is not eloquent to consider all options or do not have much time to think about it.


Ibid. pp. 83-102.

2 JH Edelstein, ‘Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness’, The Guardian, 12 April 2009, retrieved 25 September 2011, <>. 3 E Kolbert, ‘What Was I Thinking? The latest reasoning about our irrational ways’, The New Yorker, 25 February 2008, retrieved 25 September 2011, < books_kolbert>. 4 E Day, ‘Julia Neuberger: ‘A nudge in the right direction won’t run the big society’, The Guardian, 17 July 2011, 25 September 2011, <>.


Scalable Solution With Strategic Potential iTunes Software When first introduced in 2001 Apple’s iTunes software was a mere music player that helps import music from CD and organize songs by artists and genre. Today, iTunes has become the centerpiece of Apple’s business — it distributes millions of podcasts and university lectures for free, and sells billions of musics, films, books, and software. More importantly, it has given rise to an ecosystem where the content and software creators thrive.

iTunes 1.O1 (left) and iTunes 10 (right) — there is no significant change in the basic interface

What is notable is that there has not been no significant change in the basic interface over more than 10 years, which draws attention to Apple’s strategy — one can easily speculate that music and software retail business was embedded from the beginning to the planning of iTunes software. iTunes software, for Apple, was the trojan horse that slowly and unknowingly penetrated the customer group without giving too much burden at once. What Problem Did It Solve? The creative industry — especially musicians — was undergoing a serious threat of digital piracy when Apple first launched the iTunes software 1.0 in 2001. The newly introduced peer-to-peer download technology enabled ever-bigger flow of free-music — for consumers but obviously not for the creators — that would discourage musicians and therefore may cause the industry a recession. Through the usefulness of the software, ease and sensibility of single song purchase, Apple has earned enough customers who are willing to pay a dollar for a song, which created an symbiosis of creator, distributor and consumer. Apple has become the largest music retailer in the US as of 20082 — not just online but in the whole music retail business, which, along with the success of iPod, has returned the company the largest revenue, so that it could heavily invest on research and development for the next round — iPhone and iPad.

1 S Streza, ‘What happened to iTunes?’,, 7 March 2007, retrieved 15 September 2011, <http://>. 2 E Bangemen, ‘Apple passes Wal-Mart, now #1 music retailer in US’, Ars Technica, April 2008, retrieved 15 September 2011, < ars>.

FRAMEWORK 29 Desirability Apple has been gradually including new features so that customers could BRIEF HISTORY OF ITUNES SOFTWARE Viability learn and accept each of them progressively, which, if done all in once, January 9, 2001 iTunes 1.0 launch Balance would have made users puzzled and stay away from the software. The One could store an unlimited number of Feasibility Upstream newly introduced music player was easier to organize music than any oth- MP3 files from compact disc(CD)s or burn CDs from files Solution Problem er players in the market. Then the music store with single-song-purchase Abductive thinking? policy for the first time in the industry was just more sensible for customers April 28, 2003 iTunes 4 with The iTunes than going through piracy websites to illegally download songs or go out Music Store launch off with 200 000 songs the store, Model 1 – aUpstream Model 2 Starting – Resolution to the store to purchase whole album for only a song. Apple has been include music sharing over wireless local adding features that make the purchase more worthwhile such as album area network(WLAN) jackets and digital booklet on top of the ease of organizing songs.

It was a well-planned choice architecture with a long-term strategy, which eventually created an symbiosis of creator, distributor and consumer.

June 9, 2004 AirTunes support Music play in remote speakers over WLAN January 15, 2008 Movie rental

January 7, 2007 iPhone App Store launch


Systems Thinking

Behavioural Science


January 27, 2010 iBooks launch Book sales in iTunes Store October 20, 2010 Mac App Store launch Personal computers from Apple now has the Mac App Store and one doesn’t need a CD-ROM drive, which fundamentally change the design of hardware and specification of laptop products


Model 3 - The Bridge and the World

Demographics & Approach Literature, Activism and Documentary Eating Animals, a work of non-fiction by Jonathan Safran Foer, promotes a vegetarian lifeSolution Behavioural Systems Shared Vision agility of many animals grown for food and the fear and pain style by highlighting the mental Science Thinking Problem associated with meat production whether or not through an industrial production method.1 Recognizing that the animals we eat have minds makes them similar to us in morally impor4 - Lenses (descriptive) Final Foer - Inception tant ways, Model and this recognition conflicts with our use of animals for food. argues that the animals did not orchestrate their births and they are slaughtered when they are teenagerequivalent young and therefore the idea that humanity sustain animals. Earlier in 2005, Earthlings, a documentary film by Shaun Monson, dealt with humanity’s use of animals as pets, food, clothing, entertainment, and for scientific research. The film is nar-


JS Foer, Eating animals, Little, Brown Company, New York, 2009.


rated by Joaquin Phoenix, features music by Moby, and is co-produced by Maggie Q , all of whom are celebrities practicing veganism.1 Covering pet stores, puppy mills and animal shelters, factory farms, the leather and fur trades, sports and entertainment industries, and finally the medical and scientific profession, the film includes footage obtained through the use of hidden cameras to chronicle the day-to-day practices, all of which rely on animals. It argues that our use of animal parallels between racism, sexism, and speciesism in which one group has inferior position to the other. Although both Eating Animals and Earthlings have hugely altered ways of thinking of many individual, they fail to influence the critical mass. It is not to say that campaigns, literature, or documentary films are unimportant, but to clarify that Beef Finland 2012 has different demographic than aforementioned approach. They are hugely important and valuable asset to the society and experts. The majority of general public, however, do not know that there are such films and books or they would avoid watching or reading such contents even knowingly. One cannot force friends and families who do not understand the issue deeply risking the relationship. Positive Alternatives With Systemic Potential — Why Forceful Pushes Won’t Do Helsinki city from 2010 has been trying to force its students have more vegetarian meals which can have a enormous and lasting impact only if successful as about 2 million meals are eaten outside home daily in Finland, every second of them at school canteens. Helsinki city approved to serve only vegetarian food in schools once a week, but experts has different opinions on the issue. Helsinki city representative Ulla-Maija Urho said that vegetarian food will not be tasty for all while Mikael Fogelholm, the director of Health Research Unit from Academy of Finland, argued that people won’t choose vegetarian option if it is not the only choice.2 There had been active debates and votes in schools about vegetarian food day, and many of them are not agreed upon the idea. Some said that vegetarian food is not necessarily more ecological option considering climate changes since most of vegetables are imported from distanced countries while some argued it is important for children that they can enjoy food without thinking about saving the world.3 On 14 February 2011 Uusi Suomi reported that many students don’t appear in canteens on the vegetarian food day.4 This incident reminds me of the comparison Meadows drew in Thinking in Systems. ‘In 1967, the Romanian government decided that Romania needed more people and that the way to get them was to make abortions for women under age forty-five illegal. Abortions were abruptly banned. Shortly thereafter, the birth rate tripled. Then the policy resistance of the Romanian people set in. Although contraceptives and abortions remained illegal, the birth rate slowly came back down nearly to its previous level. This result was achieved primarily through dangerous, illegal abortions, which tripled the maternity mortality rate. In addition, many of the unwanted children that had been born when abortions were illegal were abandoned to orphanages. Romanian families were too poor to raise 1

Earthlings website, retrieved 25 March 2012, <>.

2 ‘Helsingin koulujen kasvisruokapäivä nostattaa tunteita’, YLE Uutiset, 19 February 2010, retrieved 3 March 2012, < html>. 3 ‘YouTube-hitti: Tappelu kasvisruoasta’, Uusi Suomi, 23 February 2010, retrieved 3 March 2012, <http://www.>. 4 ‘Yle: Taisteltu kasvisruokapäivä — koululaiset äänestävät jaloillaan’, Uusi Suomi, 14 February 2011, <http://>.


the many children their government desired decently, and they knew it. So, they resisted the government’s pull toward larger family size, at great cost to themselves and to the generation of children who grew up in orphanages. ... Another example was Sweden’s population policy. During the 1930’s, Sweden’s birth rate dropped precipitously, and, like the governments of Romania and Hungary, the Swedish government assessed its goals and those of the population and decided that there was a basis of agreement, not on the size of the family, but on the quality of child care. Every child should be wanted and nurtured. No child should be in material need. Every child should have access to excellent education and health care. There were goals around which the government and the people could align themselves. The resulting policy looked strange during a time of low birth rate, because it included free contraceptive and abortion — because of the principle that every child should be wanted. The policy also included wide-spread sex education, easier divorce laws, free obstetrical care, support for families in need, and greatly increased investment in education and health care.1 Since then, the Swedish birth rate has gone up and down several times without causing panic in either direction, because the nation is focused on a far more important goal than the number of Swedes.’ 2 Swedish population policy doesn’t only benefit those who got pregnant without planning but the nation’s long term competency as all children are nurtured and the general education level is enhanced. Push doesn’t always work as there always will be policy resistance. People do not want to follow what they did not choose, which is why social planners or general problem solvers should pay close attention to what people want. Without a shared vision at large, policy resistance get things back to where they were, or even worse, to where they shouldn’t be. The forceful attempt of city of Helsinki made uncomfortable memory to young students which they will remember when another chance to try a vegetarian meal especially due to the low quality vegetarian meatballs and vegetarian steak. Contrary to the unfortunate incident of city of Helsinki, students at Aalto confess that they have learnt to eat vegetables in Kipsari, a vegetarian-vegan restaurant at Aalto School of Arts, Design and Architecture. Interestingly, not all the visitors were vegetarians. In a very small interview based survey to thirty random visitors — although nowhere near being scientific — only four out of thirty were vegetarians,3 which is a little more than 10 per cent still higher than the average of only 0.5 to 3 per cent of the adult population in Finland.4 There is something special about Kipsari. The atmosphere is nothing like the restaurants run by other large catering services, vegetables are chopped on spot, everything is cooked from scratch, they also sell various sandwiches the bread of which is also baked and made from scratch, and they are open from 8 am to 7 pm. Having student canteen with same or similar operation principle in the city center where all the students can come and have lunch for dis-

1 A Myrdal, Nation and Family, Cambridge, MIT Press, 1968. (Original edition published by Harper & Brothers, New York, 1941) 2

Meadows & Wright, op.cit., p. 115-116.

3 ‘How Many Are Actually Vegetarians In A Vegetarian Restaurant?’, Beef Finland 2012, 20 January 2012, retrieved 26 March 2012, <>. 4 M Vinnari, J Montonen, T Härkänen & S Männistö, ‘Identifying vegetarians and their food consumption according to self-identification and operationalized definition in Finland’, Public Health Nutrition: 12(4), 481-488, doi:10.1017/ S1368980008002486, Cambridge Journal, 2008.

Desirability Viability



Feasibility counted impact. In fact, Kipsari wants to expand its operation to other Upstream price will have a big places but ‘the rent is always the biggest hindrance as Kipsari is paying very little to the school Problem Solution premises today,’ says the Jaana Jussila, the general manager. ‘We try to serve what is good and Abductive thinking? healthy to our owners, the students because we have a long relationship with school and the school and the student union try to protect each other. Recently, we are actively talking about Model 1 – Upstream Model 2 – Resolution banning tuna sandwich although it is one of the most popular menu in Kipsari due to the fact that more than half of tuna are endangered,’ says Ilmari Arnkil the chairman of the board. iTunes Software

Swedish Population Policy

Kipsari Vegetarian Canteen • Only vegetarian or vegan menu as default being one of three restaurant • Interesting atmosphere • Exotic menu with unusual use of spices rather than substitutes like vegetarianmeatball • Cooked from scratch on spot

Systems Approach

Shared revenue with the music industry for synergy

• Wide-spread sex education • Easier divorce law

Shared ownership of the restaurant

Symbiosis of creator, distributor (retailer), and consumer

All children should be wanted and nurtured

Customer and the canteen take care of each other

New vision

Common ground


Systems Thinking

• Free abortion and contraceptive • Heavy investment in education and healthcare

Behavioural Science

• Clever interface • One-song-purchase • Gradual feature updates


Nudge (Behavioural Science)

Benefit all stakeholders in the long run

Analysis of iTunes, Swedish Population Policy, and Kipsari world

If the shared vision is to feed all children healthier and tasty vegetables, as an example, a policy to have a fully vegetarian restaurant in schools with more than two canteens can be devised in which the rent of the vegetarian one can be subsidized just like electric car is subsidized. In turn, the restaurants will hire more people than the conventional canteens as they cook from Model 3 - The Bridge and the World scratch, health benefits in the long-term, altered food choices, and reduced GHG emission. What is need is a number of scalable solutions with strategic and systemic potential targeting the mass — the general public. More importantly the vision should be aligned with the benefit of stakeholders — in the case of Beef Finland 2012 — that is all the people and the approach should be inclusive, voluntary and not forceful.

Behavioural Science


Shared Vision


Model 4 - Lenses (descriptive)

Systems Thinking

Final - Inception


Tool Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe. — Abraham Lincoln Lincoln’s quote raises very important and interesting questions: Are we equipped with a tool for the job? Are these tools we hold on our hands right tools? Is my tool sharp enough? Designers as a problem solvers need a number of tools — brainstorming, affinity diagram, ethnography just to mention a few — yet I feel we are ill-equipped to go upstream and figure out the structure of a problem. What do we do if the problem given to us is not framed properly? What if the assumption of the problem was simply false? Design Brief Design brief seems to be just the right artifact to develop to solve problem going upstream. While I was working in various design consultancies in both interaction and product design field, however, very seldom did I write or receive a brief. It is almost strange because a brief is naturally the starting point of project, a strategic resource that helps make sure devised creative solutions are aligned with the long term strategy, distinguish and agree upon inflexible elements from those flexible, ask why it should be as opposed to what should be done, establish partnership between designers and the requestor(s), and it works as a contract between different parties involved in a project.1 Surprisingly there is more or less no definitive literature on design brief for industrial design, let alone strategic design. Only in 2001 Blyth and Worthington made a book on architectural brief published,2 and in 2004 Philips had published one on marketing communications.3 Ibach in 2009 got a how-to handbook on creative brief published for the advertisement industry.4 In fact it wasn’t easy for Philips either. He ‘looked for some written body of knowledge on the subject and came up more or less empty’ some forty years ago. ‘There were some articles in various design magazines that touched on design brief, or creative briefs,’ but he ‘could not find any definitive books on the subject,’ He says. Philips continues to complain that today, some forty years later, to the best of his knowledge, ‘there are still no books available about design briefs, and the subject is only vaguely covered in many notable professional design curriculums.’5 Nonetheless design brief — or just brief — is indispensable part of problem solving. One way or the other we get a brief, and more often than not, we find how critical it is. One can go on to say that ‘the client doesn’t understand,’ but it is probably a boomeranging blame that we did not understand that there was misunderstanding. By writing and confirming the brief with requestor, we can make sure that both — or more — parties are on the same page.6


PL Philips, Creating the Perfect Design Brief, All Worth Press, New York, 2004.


A Blyth & J Worthington, Managing the Brief for Better Design, Spon Press, London, 2001.


Philips, loc. cit.


H Ibach, How to Write an Inspired Creative Brief, Lightning Source UK Ltd, Milton Keynes, 2009.


Philips, loc. cit.


Philips, op.cit., pp. 1-15.


One of the attempts to help create a good design brief for industrial and strategic design is Design Brief Survival Kit written by one of the Aalto alumni in 2007. RuzPahkasalo, as her masters thesis, attempted to create a guideline for devising design briefs based on her personal experiences as a designer and a survey to other designers in Finland. The project involved researching literature and Internet about the design brief and methods of information gathering to build Design Brief Survival Kit them. The research also included the analysis and presentation of a survey conducted to designers. Results of the survey are presented in a form of a Design Brief Survival Kit (DBSK), a box containing three books: Theoretical and research part; Short guide to construct a design brief; Case study.1 As Ibach’s book is a how-to handbook it doesn’t hold so much of structure as that of Philips, and of Blyth and Worthington is radically different from all of the aforementioned as it is written for architectural project. Ibach, without much explanation, emphasize the importance of inspiration that a brief can create a great deal. IPA, ISBA, MCCA, and PRCA together have published The Client Brief: A Best Practice To Briefing Communications Agencies in 2003 as a part of Joint Industry Guidelines For Young Marketing Professionals In Working Effectively With Agencies (JIG), which is the only literature written from and for the requestor side in communication and advertisement. Based on years of survey, JIG attempts to have the requestor the importance of briefs.2

IPA, ISBA, MCCA, PRCA Institute of Practitioners in Advertising, Marketing Communication Consultant Association, Incorporated Society of British Advertisers, Public Relations Consultants Association of UK

The biggest difference between the fields appeared to be the authorship. Philips emphasize that there should be a strong coauthorship of all parties involved though the design brief committee should take charge for efficiency and agility3 while Ibach stress the clients should be excluded from the brief-writing at all because they are insider of the product to sell who cannot see the matter objectively.4 Blyth and Worthington contrastingly introduces various methods to include the needs of user-clients into brief writing.5 JIG states that both clients and agents see enormous benefits in starting with a written document produced by the client, which is then analyzed by the agency and debated between the two teams.6 The format also varied depending on author and the fields. The field of architecture required a very detailed format for each phase, whereas Ibach more or less ordered to write one-page-proposal.


S Ruz-Pahkasalo, Design Brief Survival Kit, a masters thesis, 2007

2 IPA, ISBA, MCCA & PRCA, The Client Brief: A Best Practice To Briefing Communications Agencies, July 2003, available at <>. 3

Philips, op.cit., pp. 17-27.


Ibach, op.cit., p. 83.


Blyth & Worthington, op.cit., pp. 24-39.


IPA, ISBA, MCCA & PRCA, 2003, op.cit., p. 6.

FRAMEWORK 35 Philips

Blyth & Worthington




Visual Communications, packaging


Marketing Communications, Advertisement

Marketing Communications, Advertisement

Brief is

• A written agreement, or contract between the parties involved with the project • A business plan • Not what they want, but why they want it

• A process of refinement from a general expression of need to a particular solution • Evolving agenda

• A road map, a guide • A contract between an account manager — project manager — and the creative team

• The most important written information issued by a client to a agency • A bridge from point A to point B

Brief does

• Define steps from inception and completion of a project • Help non-designers understand complex phases of completing design project

• Brings greater clarity • Establishes accountability and responsibility • Align objectives of parties involved • Help effective decision making

• Spells out inspiring terms exactly what needs to be produced to solve a specific business communication problem

• Help to better work • Saves time and money • Help remunerate more fairly


• No definite format • Complete and useful no matter how long

Reflects the project phases (from pre-project to project to post-project stage)

• No definite format but should be short, inspirational, insightful and clear

• Simple and clear combination of verbal and written format


• We (the design groups and the requestors) • Design Brief Project Team (for efficiency and agility)

Designers, paying clients, user clients (through various ethnographic tools)

• Do not have the client sit with designers • The creative team — other designers

First written by client and then analysed by the agency and debated between the two teams.

In a brief

• Key-stakeholders • Category review • Target Audience Review • Company portfolio • Business objectives and design strategies • Project Scope, Time Line, Budget: Phases • Not ideas, but preferred business outcome

• Mission • Objectives • Performance requirements and measures • Priorities • Management of decisions and responsibilities • Timeframe • Who is expected to respond

• Single minded proposition • Mandatories • Timeline • Budget • Measurement strategy • Copy points • Brand position • Call to action • Offer

• Project management • Where are we now? • Where do we want to be? • What are we doing to get there? • Who do we need to talk to? • How will we know we’ve arrived? • Practicalities • Approvals

Summary and contrast among four literature on brief

What is unanimous in all literatures is that they are all based on a strong assumption that there is a client. For projects like Beef Finland 2012, however, there is no single entity who owns the problem and therefore the recommendations of authorship in anyway don’t apply to the this thesis. Consequently a need to conceive fictional post-project use was identified. Also, time and budget remain unclear for Beef Finland 2012 because there is no single entity accountable for budget and time frame. Consequently a need to devise flexible time frame with a strategic deadline was recognized. The purpose of the brief is decided to be twofold: Handing out to general public at various occasions; Utilizing it as a design brief for intensive workshops and studio courses at, for example, Creative Sustainability masters programme at Aalto University. The newspaper is supposed to be updated and re-printed every or every second year. The authorship was decided to be open-source based primarily talking to various experts in Finland and later getting contributions through the Internet through a blog. The time frame of the project was determined open-ended with periodic deadlines — for example the first design brief of Beef Finland 2012 is 10. 4. 2012 as it is one of the official hand-in date at Industrial and Strategic Design programme at Aalto University.


Desirability Viability Balance Feasibility



Abductive thinking?


Systems Thinking

Model 2 – Resolution

Behavioural Science


Model 1 – Upstream



Model 3 - The Bridge and the World

Behavioural Science


Shared Vision


Model 4 - Lenses (descriptive)

Systems Thinking

Final - Inception


Artefacts Three products are chosen as the artefacts of this thesis according to the aforementioned aspects: A blog as evolutionary body of the design brief with the largest amount of content; A newspaper for workshops, seminars, courses, and studios with periodical updates; Thesis book as theoretical body of the work. Blog The blog was built as a platform for real-time, up-to-date, and interactive communication so that anyone can be a join, contributor or give comments on the posts. The WordPress system was carefully chosen to get enough freedom and control at the same time: neither anyone needs to subscribe to a certain commercial web service to give comments, nor the number of contributors are limited unlike hosted and serviced blogging platform such as Tumblr or Blogger. The domain name,, was carefully chosen and purchased as to be easily transformed to any organization that may be willing to take over the project and expand it further. A template for the blog was designed so that the previews of the multi-media can be easily exposed while more important posts can have larger surface area on screens.

The origin of blog The term ‘weblog’ was coined by Jorn Barger on 17 December 1997. The short form, “blog,” was coined by Peter Merholz, who jokingly broke the word weblog into the phrase we blog in the sidebar of his blog in April or May 1999. WordPress is a free and open source blogging tool and content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL. It has many features including a plug-in architecture and a template system.

Newspaper The design brief in the form of newspaper would be utilized in various occasions being updated and re-printed periodically. The newspaper is an invitation to the problem, and information package to also help those non-professionals get informed. A tabloid format was chosen because it is the most affordable way of publication in Finland and also very friendly to all ages with a large amount of information in such a small package. The number of sheets were limited to two as it gives more burden to reader as the amount of content increases. The language in the newspaper was also restricted to plain English — from cardiovascular to heart and vein related illness, from bovine sponge form to mad cow disease — to target a larger demographics.


Newspaper in progress Digital files are available at

Thesis The thesis naturally contains the justification and the theoretical background of this thesis and hence utilize more professional terms â&#x20AC;&#x201D; both in design and environment â&#x20AC;&#x201D; to communicate with experts such as hands-on professionals, scholars, researchers in various fields who may be partners in the long run. In thesis the stance of designer as problem solvers for challenges of today, lenses to , approach, and tools.

Methods Experts Interviews As a novice in the field of farming, food retail, restaurant business, nutrition, environment, and climate change interview was a very natural choice to collect data. Experts from various field mostly in Finland were very co-operative and most of the interviews were recorded during the talk in person while some of them were conducted by email or a phone call. The majority of them were transcribed, processed to be more readable and engaging article, which were sent to and confirmed by the experts and amended if there were any misunderstanding or scientifically false data, then finally posted on the blog: Experts also provided scientific articles and statistics data as well as their ideas and insights, and many of them promised to join if this project develops further.

Recorded Interview Length



Occupation /Organization

Bryan Boyer

Nov 10 2011

Design Lead /Sitra

Tips for design brief as a former design of Helsinki Design Lab Studios in 2010

Karlijn Souren

Nov 14 2011

Eating designer /Freelancer

1:28 mins

• Myth buster of night food: not preference but availability • Social issues around food • Food waste problem

Sasu Laukkonen

Dec 7 2011

Owner chef /Chef & Sommelier

1:15 mins

• The rise of new Nordic cuisine • Organic food discourse among restaurateurs • How he uses herbs and vegetables being wasted in the city • How he uses a whole animal (not to waste parts)

Toshiaki Hoshi

Dec 11 2011

Cook /Ravintola Hoshito

1:14 mins

• Why he uses more meat for customers in Finland • Meat vs vegetable satisfaction-performance • Price comparison in Japan and in Finland from a chef’s point of view

Tapani Parviainen

Dec 13 2011

Veterinarian /Aluehallintovirasto

1:19 mins

Safety of meat production in Finland — Geographical implication of farming in Finland

Ville Tikka

14 Dec 2011

Strategic Director & Futures Specialist/WeVolve

WeVolve’s approach to societal changes of a preferred future

Markus Vinnari

13 Jan 2012

Post-doctoral Researcher/University of Eastern Finland

Vegetarian population in Finland and its development

Aki Arjola

16 Jan 2012

Founder/Eat & Joy

0:43 mins

Why Finland should go back to small-scale farming

Dan Hill

18 Jan 2012

Design Lead/Sitra

0:35 mins

Tips for design brief as a former participant to one of Helsinki Design Lab Studio in 2010

Key Questions or Ideas

40 METHODS Recorded Interview Length

Key Questions or Ideas



Occupation /Organization

Tommi Kotiranta

19 Jan 2012

Founder/Ravintola Zuccini

Waiting for answer to the questionnaire sent to him

Antti Oksa

25 Jan 2012

Category Manager, Meat sales in S Group grocery chains/ SOK

59 mins

• Beef and meat sales in S grocery chain • S Group’s approach to meat consumption

Outi Kuittinen & Aleksi Neuvonen

27 Jan 12 Mar 29 Mar 2012

Researcher / Demos Helsinki

101 mins

• Overall discussion on meat and dairy consumption • Possible use of the newspaper for workshops

Sirpa Kurppa

27 Feb 2012

Food researcher, MTT

56 mins

• Beef and meat related research going on in MTT • Environmental ramification of beef production in Finland

Miska Knapek

28 Feb 2012

Masters student at Aalto University

61 mins

Veganism, raw-foodist in Nordic Europe

Suvi Vuorinen

1 Mar 2012

Home economics teacher, formerly working for Helsingin Suomenkielinen Työväenopisto

53 mins

Cooking courses in Suomenkielinen työväenopisto (The Finnish Adult Education Centre in Helsinki) — Home economics courses

Jaana Jussila

2 Mon 2012

Director, Kipsari

• History of Kipsari, a vegetarian-vegan canteen owned by the student union at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture • How Kipsari is run

Ilmari Arnkil

4 Mar 2012

Chairman of the board of Kipsari /Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture

• How Kipsari is run • History of Kipsari

Raija Kara

6 Mar 2012

Secretary general /Finnish National Nutrition Council

61 mins

• How dietary recommendation is being devised in Finland • Official opinion of National Nutrition Council on the current trend: low carb diet

Jyrki Niemi

8 Mar 2012

Professor /MTT Economic Research

71 mins

• The history of subsidy on beef production and distribution and its ramification • Number of farms, sizes before and after

Christer Lindgren & Mariaana Nelimarkka

8 Mar 2012

Food writers /Kielhuu

65 mins

• The rise of new Finnish cuisine • Reasonings behind vegetarian cookbook • How to lead the new food trend

Johanna Mäkelä

12 Mar 2012

Professor of Finnish food culture, University of Helsinki

51 mins

• Obstacles and opportunities reflecting the history of Finnish food culture

Kristiina Kainulainen

13 Mar 2012

Doctoral Candidate, University of Helsinki

• Everyday food choice situations from adolescents’ own point of view and health implications to enhance home economics education

Raija Tahvonen

16 Mar 2012

Professor of Biotechnology and Food Research, MTT

174 mins

• Metabolism of Finnish people • Calcium deficiency and protein • High dairy intake and osteoporosis — Diet related healthcare cost issue

Experts lists with date, occupation, interview time and key issues addressed


Affinity Diagram Devised by Jiro Kawakita in the 60’s, affinity diagram, also referred as KJ method, has been widely accepted by the business world.1 Kawakita developed affinity diagram to analyze and organize complex, immeasurable, idiosyncratic, non-repetitive, behavioral, qualitative data collected in the field.2 All the collected data was put on the wall and rearranged until they look clustered in groups by affinity. This was extremely helpful especially in the beginning of the project to understand the structure and group ideas accordingly.

Affinity diagram in progress February 2 2012

1 R Futami, ‘The Outline of Seven Management Tools for QC’, Reports of Statistical Application Research, 33 (June) 7-26. Union of Japanese Scientists and Engineers, Tokyo, 1986. 2 R Scupin, ‘The KJ method: A technique for analysing data derived from Japanese ethnology’, Human Organization; Summer 1997; 56, 2; ProQuest, 233-237, 1997.


‘We create and perceive our world simultaneously and our mind does this so well we don’t even know what’s happening, that allows us get right in the middle of that process.’ 1

Problem Solving

Design Brief as Dynamically Evolving Agenda

Preferred future Present

Solution Problem

Create Inception Perceive


Dom Cobb in movie Inception (2010) by director Christopher Nolan


Findings Agriculture in Finland At A Glance Food security of Finland among other Nordic European nations has been heavily dependant upon dairy as its climate and soils make growing crops particularly challenging. The country lies between 60° and 70° north latitude, and has severe winters and relatively short growing seasons. However, Finland contains half of the world’s arable land north of 60° north latitude. Annual precipitation is usually sufficient, but it occurs almost exclusively during the winter months, making summer droughts a constant threat. Climatic summers of the southern Finland last 4 months. In northern Finland, particularly in Lapland, a subarctic climate dominates, characterized by cold — occasionally severe — winters and relatively warm, short summers. Winters in north Finland are nearly 7 months long, and snow covers the lands almost 6 months. Summers in the north are quite short, only 2 — 3 months. In response to the climate, farmers have relied on quick-ripening and frost-resistant varieties of crops, and they have cultivated south-facing slopes as well as richer bottom lands to ensure production even in years with summer frosts. Most farmland had originally been either forest or swamp, and the soil had usually required treatment with lime and years of cultivation to neutralize excess acid and to develop fertility. Irrigation was generally not necessary, but drainage systems were often needed to remove excess water.

The Vicious Circle of Meat and Dairy Meat consumption Finland consumed 71.26 kg of meat per capita in 2007 that is less than the other European nations such as Spain (111.79 kg), France (88.77 kg),1 but almost double of what the dietary experts recommends — 100 g per day — worldwide. Ground Beef and Breeding Cycle Perhaps surprisingly ground beef constitutes the majority of Finnish beef consumption, which has become progressively affordable owing to the shortened breeding cycle as well as the Finnish dairy consumption that is higher than almost any other nation. The shortened breeding cycle has taken place for various reasons: increased input costs; enhanced milk productivity due to breeding system and altered feed composition; fixated market price. Many misunderstand that the beef consumption has been decreasing and beef in Finland comes from only certain area, but any dairy farm in Finland is also beef farm as all the dairy cattle are being used as minced meat. Minced meat is popular also because of its versatility and convenience — to cook laatikko (Finnish oven casserole), meatball, burger, et cetera — naturally become the most common menu in restaurants and canteens. Popularity of laatikko, which usually required a large quantity of cream or cheese to cook, has to do with high gender equity of Finnish society where

1 Meat Consumption (Total, kg/capita/yr), FAOSTAT: on-line Statistical Service of Statistics Division of FAO, Food and Agriculture Organizat ion of the United Nations, Rome, retrieved 19 May 2011 < DesktopDefault.aspx>.

44 FINDINGS 400 kg

Finland Dairy Excl. Butter 350 kg

300 kg

250 kg

200 kg

Finland’s dairy consumption is the highest in the world, that is reinforcing the vicious circle of beef production from dairy cattle and abundant minced beef.

US Dairy Excl. Butter


South American Finnish

200 kg

Steak parts 5% Roasts 5% Strip, Cubes Brazilian etc 9%

Minced Beef 81%

German, Argentine, Uruguayan, Paraguayan

Finnish Dairy Cattle 95 %

150 kg

Finnish Beef Cattle 5%

Total Beef sales by S Group’s Grocery Chains in 2011: 16 Million kg

US All Meat

100 kg

World Dairy Excl. Butter Finland All Meat Asia Dairy Excl. Butter World All Meat

50 kg

Africa Dairy Excl. Butter Finland Pork Asia All Meat Finland Beef Finland Poultry

Finland Meat, and Dairy kg / capita / year compared to other regions. Source: FAO Statistics

























0 kg

Africa All Meat

I &


The Vicious Circle

Nordic European nations has been heavily dependant upon dairy as its climate and soils make growing crops particularly challenging. Finland’s dairy consumption in 2007 was 361.19 kg per capita, higher than any nation on this planet. Finland consumed 71.26 kg of meat per capita in 2007 that is less than the other European nations such as Spain (111.79kg), France (88.77kg), but almost double of the global average and triple what the dietary experts recommends — 60g per day. Perhaps surprisingly ground beef constitutes the majority of Finnish beef consumption, most of which come from dairy cattle. Popularity of minced meat is partly due to its versatility and convenience as well as the high gender equity of Finnish society where working mom has been a long tradition. Meatball, burger and Laatikko (Finnish oven casserole) naturally have become the most common menu in restaurants and canteens as warm dish is considered proper meal in Finland. There are about ten or more variety of laatikko, and the biggest advantage of it is preparation time as the parents want to prepare the meal themselves even if it’s simply putting ready-cut meat and vegetables in an oven ware.

Finns are encouraged to drink milk for calcium and all the lunchrooms provide fresh milk. Paradoxically, high dairy intake coupled with high meat consumption provide us with excessive protein, which causes even more calcium deficiency.

Stabilize Beef Inta

Cultural trait Working mom, Nordic tradition

Abundant and cheap minced Popular for its versatility

Dietary recommendation More Milk for Calcium

Pollution Global Warming Soil erosion Water Scarcity Food crisis

Fair enough, we are encouraged to drink more milk, which will reinforce calcium deficiency.

Productive society Financially burdened government

We spend €5.1 billion out of its €50 billion state budget to diabetes alone. During the next 20 years, a population-wide intervention directed at salt intake and dietary fat quality could potentially save €150-225 million annually, which may be reinforced by aging of the Finnish population.

I f A

Increasing Pork & Chicken Intake

High Dairy Intake

Market Pressure Monopoly, unfair profit sharing

ed ake


Import from South America

Excessive Protein Intake

Soy & Grain Based Feed Meat taken from young cattle isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t good enough for other recipe but meatballs, burgers and laatikko, which are associated with all the more problematic eating habits.

Shortened breeding cycle

Lack of Steak parts

Our body discharge sulphur and phosphorus that are abundant in protein, and while doing so calcium is also expelled to make the required chemical reaction.

Soy & grain feed is one of the prime source of shortened breeding cycle and industrial farming.

If we can keep dairy cattle as long as we traditionally did and feed them on hay, we can produce really good steak parts. The beef parts you buy from Eat & Joy are exactly these!

Calcium deficiency

Concentrated, Industrial Production Farm Number decreased from 95,562 (1995) to 62,450 (2010) Finland is among the countries with the highest rate of osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis Overweight Obesity Diabetes Cardio Vascular Alzheimer

Non-dietary Contributers Lack of exercise, alcohol, lack of sleep, stress ...


working mom has been a long tradition, as well as the food culture in which warm dish is considered proper meal. There are about ten or more variety of laatikko, and the biggest advantage of it is preparation time, and Finnish parents want to prepare the meal themselves even if it’s simply putting ready-cut meat and vegetables in a oven ware. Animal Feed and Breeding Cycle Today cattle in Finland are largely fed on imported soy and grain that enhance milk productivity but exhaust the animal, and therefore to be slaughtered only after two or three calving periods. Over the past decades, the average breeding cycle has become shorter from 10-15 years to 4-5 years. The average dairy farm size has dramatically increased while the number of farms decreased while many of the cattle farms have been moving to the south as it makes more economical sense to be closer to the shore for imported soy and crop. Breeding Cycle and More Greenhouse Gas Shortened breeding system has a greater contribution to climate change due to the increased overlaps. It takes about two years for a calf to be mature to produce milk. Soy and grain based feed also means more greenhouse gas emission and altered fatty acid composition that proves to be less healthy than traditional composition. Even in the old days Butter was softer in the summer than in the winter because cattle were fed mostly on grass in the summer and more on other feed in the winter. Only about 5% of whole dairy production keeps the traditional grass feed. Today farmers try to alter the enhance fatty acid composition by providing the animal with rapeseed press cake while keeping soy and crop based feed. Meat from young dairy cattle also means lower quality beef, which is why we eat them as minced meat while importing beef from South America. According to Aki Arjola, a cofounder of a leading organic grocery chain in Helsinki, the beef from older dairy cattle produces much tastier steak parts than that of a young beef cattle. 5 year cycle 10 year cycle 5 10 15 Comparison of overlaps between Breeding Cycles of 5 years and of 10 years in 20 years time frame The darker areas represents the two years the newly born calves become mature to produce milk.

20 Years

Dairy and Osteoporosis Finns are educated and being encouraged to drink milk for calcium and all the lunchrooms provide fresh milk. Paradoxically, high dairy intake coupled with high meat consumption provide us with excessive protein, which causes calcium deficiency — our body excrete sulphur and phosphorus that are abundant in protein, and while doing so calcium is also expelled to make the required chemical reaction — which again urges people to drink more milk. Stabilized beef consumption, high dairy consumption, and increasing pork and poultry consumption amplify excessive protein intake, today Finland is among the countries with highest risks of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is called the silent epidemic because of it’s symptomless development and the lack of public awareness,1 and the economical ramification is increasingly recognized.


International Osteoporosis Foundation, retrieved 29 March 2012, <>.


Unhealthy Nation, Soaring Costs Finns are not very healthy — approximately half of men and 40% of women are overweight in Finland.1 We have a large number of obesity, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, which have been parallel with increasing consumption of meat. Taken together, the healthcare costs are being more and more burdensome. The prevalence of overweight is higher in the older age groups than in the younger groups. The prevalence of overweight differs also by educational level, especially among women: lower educated women are more often overweight compared to their higher educated counterparts.2 There are estimated to be about 150,000 people with diabetes in Finland, about 23,000 of whom have type I diabetes (an incidence of almost 40 per 100,000 population). Type I diabetes, which usually emerges in childhood or adolescence, is more common in Finland than in any other country in the world. The incidence of Type 2 diabetes is also fairly high compared to other western countries. It has been estimated that the prevalence of diabetes in adulthood has grown ten-fold and the number of persons suffering from the disease has grown over twenty-fold in the last fifty years.3 Recently, the increasing prevalence of type 2 diabetes has been notified as a major current public health problem in Finland. As a result the National Programme for the Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes 2003 — 2010 (DEHKO) was set up. The programme was coordinated by the Finnish Diabetes Association and a wide variety of other relevant organizations are participating. The programme comprises three concurrent strategies: the Population Strategy aimed at promoting the health of the entire population by means of nutritional interventions and increased physical activity so that the risk factors for type 2 diabetes, such as obesity and metabolic syndrome, are reduced in all age groups; High-Risk Strategy comprises measures targeted at individuals at particularly high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, providing a systematic model for the screening, education and monitoring of people at risk; the Strategy of Early Diagnosis and Management is directed at persons with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes with the aim of bringing these people into the sphere of systematic treatment, thus preventing the development of diabetic complications that reduce the affected person’s quality of life and are expensive to manage.4 The estimated direct costs of both types of diabetes is € 3.3 billion with additional costs of some 1.8 billion, which are staggering figures considering that the Finnish state budget is approximately € 55 billion. Moreover, these costs come mostly from type 2 diabetes that costs about € 530 per patient per year in a non-complicated disease. Additional complications brings this cost up to € 10,700 per year per diabetic patient.5

1 Overweight and obesity, National Institute for Health and Welfare THL, retrieved 29 March 2012, <http://>. 2 ibid. 3 J Järvelin (Ed.), A Rico & T Cetani, ‘Health Care Systems in Transition’, The European Observatory on Health Care Systems, Vol. 4. No. 1, 2002, p. 10. 4 Finland (2008), World Health Organization WHO, retrieved 29 March 2012, < what-we-do/health-topics/Health-systems/public-health-services/facts-and-figures/finland-2008>. 5 E Vartiainen, Sydän- ja verisuonisairauksien ja diabeteksen asiantuntijaryhmän raportti 2008, Kansanterveyslaitos, Terveyden edistämisen ja kroonisten tautien ehkäisyn osasto, Helsinki, 2008, pp. 15-16.


Metabolism Metabolism refers to the chemical processes that occur within a living organism in order to maintain life. Bovine animals, for example, can eat and survive grass while we mankind cannot. Difference of metabolism in same species also shows geographical implications. Small intestine of Asians, for example, is known to be longer than that of the others that makes boiled vegetables easier for Asians for digestion. It was discussed with experts whether the Finnish population among Nordic Europeans can consume more meat and dairy without getting related diseases such as cardiovascular, type 2 diabetes or osteoporosis. Disappointingly there was no such thing but lactose tolerance and the Finnish genes that are known to be vulnerable to osteoporosis. 450 400 Finland 350


300 250

Germany Iceland

200 150

Dairy farming has been an integral part of Finnish agriculture since prehistoric times and milk has been the major agricultural product of Finland, which is well manifested by lactose tolerance found in majority of its Finnish population. Perhaps surprisingly, lactose tolerance is an “abnormal” condition. Worldwide children under 10 years old are usually lactose tolerance and gradually become intolerant becoming adults.1 It was a useful gene mutation for people in Nordic Europe where its climate and soils make growing crops particularly challenging, which took place between 5,000 to 12,000 years ago. Most Africans and Asians are lactose intolerant while more than 80% of Europeans are lactose tolerance.


According to the The Finnish Dairy Council, Finnish nutrition recommendations favor dairy products but 50 China not the fat in them. It is advised to have half a liter of Republic liquid dairy products, skimmed or low-fat, and 2-3 slicof Korea 0 es of low-fat cheese daily to meet our nutrient needs. Skimmed milk or low-fat fermented milk are recommended drinks with meals. All schools in Finland have FAO, World Milk Consumption excl. butter Kg / Capita / Year been serving a warm meal free of charge daily, regulated by law for 60 years already, and the meals include free milk, fermented milk and water as a drink in every school.2 1963 1967 1971 1975 1979 1983 1987 1991 1995 1999 2003 2007


According to FAO’s Statistical Service, Finland in 2007 consumed 361.19 kg excluding butter, more milk per capita than any other nation on this planet, and it has never gone below 300 kg since 1960 while Iceland, once-biggest consumer back in 60’s, has come down to 223.68 kg.3

1 CJ Ingram, CA Mulcare & Y Itan, ‘Lactose digestion and the evolutionary genetics of lactase persistence’, Hum Genet,124(6), pp. 579 — 591, Springer. 2 Milk in Finland, The Finnish Dairy Council, 20 March 2012, <>. 3 Milk Consumption Excluding Butter (Total, kg/capita/yr), FAOSTAT: on-line Statistical Service of Statistics Division of FAO, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, retrieved 19 May 2011, <http://faostat.fao. org/site/610/DesktopDefault.aspx>.


Dietary Recommendation The National Nutrition Council of Finland (VRN) has already since 1954 monitored the nutrition and health of Finnish people and issued nutritional recommendations aimed at improving their status. Initially the Council focused on eliminating nutritional deficiencies, but in the recent decades the major challenge has changed into reducing health problems caused rather by the overabundant consumption of food or unhealthy food.1 The Finnish nutrition recommendation is based on the Nordic Nutrition Recommendation (NNR) made by the Nordic Food Policy Cooperation that consists of experts from the member countries and autonomous territories of The Nordic Council. The Council has 87 elected members from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden as well as from the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland. The current Finnish nutrition recommendations have been renewed in 2005. They are based on the new Nordic Nutrition Recommendations which were approved in 2004 by the Nordic Council of Ministers, and we are expecting the fifth edition by the end of this year or the beginning of 2013 as NNR is published every eight years. It’s in a very extensive review process by a large number of experts, and some parts of work in progress of today is being shared on the website.2 We will be able to see some of the contents at the 10th Nordic Nutrition Conference hosted in Reykjavik, June 3-5, 2012. Raija Kara, the only full-time employ of VRN, works with roughly 20 members from various field. The National Nutrition Council is an expert body under the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. The Council members represent authorities dealing with nutrition matters, consumer, advisory and health promotion organizations as well as organizations from the fields of industry, commerce and agriculture, and they are elected for a period of three years. The term of office of the current Council is from 4 October 2011 to 3 October 2014. The tasks of the National Nutrition Council are defined in the relevant Appointment Decision, which occurs roughly every quarter. From nutrition to food While NNR’s recommendation is mostly based on nutrition — energy and nutrients, e.g. vitamins and minerals — and VRN translate the information to foodbased recommendations according to the Finnish food culture, availability, and the current situation. The nutrition recommendation is somewhat standard all over the world, but what is available and what people enjoy are hugely different in different countries. For example, people in Korea do not consume as much dairy as the Finnish people but consume much more rice. So, if one looks at the food pyramid in different countries, they look all different although contain mostly the same food groups. VRN created a plate model that exemplify typical meals in Finland for home settings and canteen settings, so that people can easily see that how much veg1 The National Nutrition Council of Finland VRN, retrieved 7 March 2012, <>. 2 <>.


etable, crops, meat or fish, and drink they need to take. The general principle is to fill one half of the plate with vegetables, one quarter with potatoes/rice/pasta and one quarter with meat/ fish/eggs/legumes and complete the meal wit low fat milk, whole-grain bread with vegetable oil-based spread and fruits/berries. About low-carb diet First of all, carbohydrate is one of the essential nutrition for our brain to work. Secondly, one needs to take a careful about the word low-carb diet. Low-carb diet can be very healthy one if you reduce excessive carbohydrate intake and try small amount of fish, and increase vegetable intake. It may not be healthy choice, however, if one dramatically reduces or simply cut back on carbohydrate all together and heavily rely on animal protein as it may cause deficiency of other nutritions and can cause serious illnesses. One shouldn’t rely on non-experts’ blog posts or book the arguments of which are based on very little scientific discoveries and go extreme. About Vegetarianism and Veganism There are several vegetarianism and all of them can be perfectly healthy choices. Veganism, although some vitamins shall be substituted, for example by taking pills, also is a perfectly health dietary choice. When turning vegetarian or vegan one needs to be well informed about which nutritions he or she will be missing by not taking certain or all animal products anymore to substitute them sufficiently. About 0.5 to 3 percent of the adult population appears to vegetarian depending on the definition.1

Solutions in Action North Karelia Project2 There have been several major public health campaigns in Finland to reduce mortality and risk factors related to chronic disease. For example, in 1972, the North Karelia Project was launched in the eastern province of North Karelia in response to a local petition to reduce the high coronary artery disease mortality rates among men3. The North Karelia Project was launched as a community-based, and later as a national, programme to influence diet and other lifestyle factors that are crucial in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. The original project period lasted from 1972 to 1977, but it continued operating beyond this period until the end of the 90’s. The prevalence of cardiovascular diseases among men in the eastern parts of Finland was higher than in other parts of the country and was one of the highest in the world. In cooperation with local and national authorities and experts, as well as with WHO, the project was designed and implemented to carry out comprehensive interventions through community organizations in the area, and the actions of people themselves. The project was integrated as far as possible into the local service system and social networks. Various methods were used in the project: provision of general information and health education (through materials, mass media, meetings, campaigns, etc.); Development of referral and screening procedures in health services; encouragement of environmental changes (such as smoking restrictions, promoting vegetable growing, collaborating with food manufacturers);


Vinnari, Montonen, Härkänen, & Männistö, loc. cit.


World Health Organization, loc. cit.

3 P Puska, E Vartiainen, T Laatikainen, P Jousilahti & M Paavola (Ed.), The North Karelia Project: From North Karelia to National Action, National Institute for Health and Welfare THL, Helsinki, 2009.


preventive work directed at children and young people; and training and education of health personnel. Much of the practical work was carried out by various bodies in the community itself, coordinated by hospitals and health centres. Over the 25-year period since the start of the project, major changes have taken place. Among men in North Karelia, smoking has greatly reduced and dietary habits have markedly changed. In 1972, a little more than half of middle-aged men in North Karelia smoked. In 1997 the percentage had fallen to less than a third. By 1995 the annual mortality rate of coronary heart disease among men under 65 years old was reduced by about 73% from the pre-programme years.1 Among women, the reduction in deaths from cardiovascular diseases has been of similar magnitude. Broad community organization and the strong participation of people were the key elements of the success of the programme. Heart Symbol by Finnish Heart Association With one glance, the Heart Symbol shows you that the product is a better choice in its product line, based on the content of fat and salt, as well as on the quality of fat. However, it does not guarantee that the product is healthy in every way, that you can eat it as much as you want or that it is necessarily a beneficial health product. On the other hand, products that haven’t been granted a Heart Symbol are not necessarily less healthy choices. Even though a single ingredient does not make one’s diet substantially more or less healthy, individual choices do ultimately make a difference, since any diet is composed of many parts. The Heart Symbol helps consumers choose products that promote a healthier diet, at least in regards to the content of fat and salt. A balanced and rich diet includes daily a lot of vegetables, berries and fruits, enough whole-grain products, moderate amounts of skimmed or low-fat dairy products, fish or low-fat meat and moderate vegetable fat such as oils and margarines.2 Herttoniemi food co-operative A novel idea is being run by the Herttoniemi Organic Food Collective, which also operated a pop up village store selling local and organic goods in Herttoniemi in September 2012. The food collective was established on the back of the Herttoniemi Food Circle, which started in 2010. Having started as a group of like-minded friends, the food circle has gained around 300 members in just under a year. Members make food orders by email and can pick up their produce once a week. Organic products are ordered directly from producers without middle men or food wastage. The Herttoniemi Organic Food Collective consists of around 200 members who grow root vegetables, greens and herbs on a rented field in Korso, Vantaa. The collective employs a gardener, but most of the work is done voluntarily by the members3.

1 P Puska, P Pietinen, U Uusitalo, ‘Influencing public nutrition for non-communicable disease prevention: from community intervention to national programme — experiences from Finland’. Public Health Nutrition, 2002, 5(1a):245 — 251. 2

Suomen Sydänliitto ry, retrived 29 March 2012, <>.

3 ‘Local food for helsinki locals!’, World Design Capital Helsinki 2012, retrieved 29 March 2012, <>.

Conclusion & Discussion The problem of global warming and beef consumption was closely investigated. A design brief was chosen as the tool to be produced in this thesis and therefore the preliminary research investigated various literature on design thinking, social science, and design brief. Behavioral science and systems thinking are hired together as the approach as the aim is not to guilt or shame people, but provide alternatives that will give rise to a virtuous circle. This thesis examined the structure of the problem of beef production and consumption both worldwide and in Finland. As results, a systems model of Finnish beef and dairy consumption were discovered while some 10 potential ideas were devised. Both the outcome of the project and the process of it can be used in a mul- Creative Sustainability? tidisciplinary master’s level programme such as Creative Sustainability. If The international Master’s Degree Programme in Creative Sustainability was the project becomes a 8-week-long intensive studio course, as an example, opened in the autumn 2010 at Aalto Universtudents from three schools in groups will take the produced design brief, sity. It is a joint master’s degree programme deconstruct and reconstruct the given brief, and then either create a proj- at School of Arts, Design and Architecture, School of Economics and School of ect within and around Beef & Finland issues or create another brief for a Engineering. The Creative Sustainability whole different area of sustainability. The examples can be Vegetable Fin- Programme is a multidisciplinary learning land 2013, Waste Management Finland 2013, Pantti — the bottle and can platform in the fields of architecture, business, design, landscape planning, real estate deposit system — Finland 2013, Photographic Waste 2014, Food Packag- and urban planning. ing and Information Finland 2014, et cetera. The students will be contacting and working with experts with diverse background as facilitator. The learning process and project outcomes will be shared on Beef Finland website while the newly updated brief will be printed annually and handed out to experts, the general public. The design brief can also be used for one day workshop or seminar with experts with various background. One of the biggest challenges of today is that the problems before us sit between different disciplines, organizations or institutions, or even countries. By having a concrete invitation to the problem, the discussion can be more agile and to the point while considering all aspects around the issue. The projects will be an excellent educational opportunity to the participants and, more importantly, to the society to seek and refine agenda in an open innovation environment, which may be the key to the aforementioned ownership problems. It also will contribute the design community to explore the potential of design in developing new tools for democracy and politics. Lastly, Beef Finland 2012 shall be replicated in other nations where the problem can make bigger impact to mitigate and adapt to the global climate change. Although Finland is a good start being uniquely positioned in-between Europe and Asia, Finland alone cannot make a big impact given its small population. From Finland to Denmark, to the Netherlands, to Germany and France, then to the UK and Spain, Beef Finland 2012 hopes to offer new tools to the world.


Appendix — Potential Ideas During the project some ten potential solutions were discovered. However, they are not by any means solutions, but tools to reflect the approach in understanding the structure of the problem and devising the design brief as ‘the information needed to understand the problem depends upon one’s idea for solving it.’1 Each idea will require another design brief if one or a group would continue with it as there will be unexpected surprises along the way. Official Dietary Recommendation for Vege-Lovers. While it is estimated that about 3% of adult population is either vegetarian or vegan in Finland, yet there is no official food-based dietary recommendation for them offered by the National Nutrition Council. The one by the Vegan Society of Finland is dated and, more importantly, unofficial to many non-vegetarians, and hence vegetarians, especially vegans often have to battle with their family to prove its perfectly healthy to stay vegan. Swedish is one of two official languages of Finland although it is the native language to only 6% of the population. Chicken or the egg — is it because there is only so little of them so that the council does not offer one, or that there is no official food-based dietary recommendation that let many people fail to substitute what is required to stay healthy as vegan or vegetarian? Governments work hard to get their population healthy due to various reasons, but yet many of them fail to do so. Official food-based dietary recommendation is the cornerstone of healthier nation and the point of departure for non-experts and families to heathier food choices, thus invaluable asset to the society. Introduce one for vegan while developing a more comprehensive food-based dietary recommendation for non-vegetarians, with a good visualizations, so that we can mix and match.


More Mushrooms It is claimed that 90% of wild mushrooms — the meat of the vegetable world — is being wasted, and there seems to be conflict between wild mushroom companies that hired workers from the far east and the Finnish residents near the forest where the mushrooms are picked. Why don’t utilize already existing information and create GPS and week-based basis smart phone apps, seasonal public transportation, festival, and competition? Why not legalize selling personally picked mushrooms to others and market places for that? Create a set of instruments that promotes mushroom and berry hunting among the Finnish population especially during the best season.


Rittel and Webber, op.cit., p. 161.


Bean Based Option in Every Lunchrooms Given that vegetarian options in lunch places mostly involve dairy — cream, cheese and fresh milk — , which inevitably reinforces the vicious circle of meat consumption, health, and greenhouse gas emission in Finland. Beans, seeds, peas, nuts are healthy alternatives for meat products. Beans especially are also economically and environmentally beneficial as they sequestrate nitrogen from the air into soil, so that farmers need not use synthetic fertilizer. Work with, and help catering businesses create non-dairy, non-meat options that involves beans, seeds, peas, and nuts that are as locally sourced as possible. Healthier, yet Easy “Laatikko” Healthy options do not matter if they are not available off the shelf and yet affordable — especially for Finnish people. According to recent research, one of the primary factors Finns consider with they go shopping is whether they can find everything they want in one place. Also, distance from home seems to have little influence when deciding where to shop and price appears to be more important in Finland than in many other European countries. This is especially true to families with children in late 30’s and early 40’s who are working long hours while taking care of their sons and daughters at the same time. This group is exceptionally important as they are forming what the next generation will eat. Introduce effortless and wholesome recipe while having the parents well informed about the importance of their role. New Gastronomy If you want to lead the trend in fashion, you create haute couture. Should you wish to change the food choices of ordinary people, you may want to work with gastronomic restaurateurs. A prominent food writers of Finland, Christer Lindgren, says that now it is the best time than ever in terms of development of Finnish gastronomy. Today, there are ever more restaurants and grocery stores in Helsinki that directly buy their groceries from organic farms with ethical production methodology, and they together succeeded to bring almost forgotten kyyttö, an original Finnish cattle breed, back to production and to the market in the recent years. Lindgren and his circle say that next is fruits, vegetables, and herbs that are native to Finland, healthy and tasty. More importantly they believe that only good food can turn people’s perception of good food. Create an a cookery competition inviting those farmers and chefs, and ask them introduce new dishes with native Finnish vegetables, fruits, herbs, and beans with little or not meat and dairy — and make a popular TV show and a cookbook! No Substitute, New Food & Dish A typical Dutch dish, Stamppot, was devised by farmers when the Netherlands was a mostly agrarian society. They had to work hard in the field and did not have much time to cook, so they put vegetables, potato, and meat in a large pot and left it on a low heat. Everything was cooked when they returned, then they mashed them all — which is where the name comes from. Although it is nice to have and keep the ritual, it is also important to think about the context of today and how we should redesign ‘eating’ because all the food were designed in one way or the other by necessity in the first place.


When we proceed to meet moderation meat and dairy consumption, we tent to find substitute — vegetarian meatball, vegetarian burger, soy yogurt, and soy mozzarella cheese — which are merely as interesting as real burger and real yogurt. Substitutes can never beat them. In contrast, tofu can be as interesting and divert as various meat cuts or cheese variety. Soft and silken tofu alone can be used with hundreds of recipes and it’s perfectly healthy. Invent new food while introducing Asian fusion dish recipes using local and seasonal Finnish produce. Break-fast, Be happy-er It has been unanimously accepted that eating breakfast is a healthy habit. Now, there is another reason to promote breakfast eating: a recent study in Korea shows that irregular breakfast consumption in men resulted in overeating at other meals and a higher daily intake of high-fat meat. Yet, Finnish breakfast appears to be not so healthy or environmentally friendly. Most of people just drink a cup of coffee, or take yogurt as a light breakfast, which puts us in the vicious circle. Help Finnish population enjoy healthier breakfast with less environmental impact. In a Vegetarian Canteen 85% are Non-Vegetarians During the last decade eating out at the lunchrooms at workplace and schools have had an increasing influence on food consumption in Finland. About 2 million meals are eaten outside home daily, every second of them at school canteens. There is a vegetarian-vegan restaurant called Kipsari at Aalto School of Arts, Design and Architecture. Interestingly, only 15% of their customers are vegetarian, and the rest is nonvegetarian. Conservatively speaking, if 25% of all students and staff are served there, it is making a big difference taking into consideration that only 3% of Finnish population is vegetarian. There is something special about Kipsari. The atmosphere is nothing like the restaurants run by large corporations, vegetables are chopped on spot, everything is cooked from scratch, they also sell various sandwiches the bread of which is also baked and made from scratch, and they are open from 8 am to 7 pm. Having student canteen with same or similar operation principle in the city center where all the students can come and have lunch for discounted price will have a big impact, but the rent seems to be the biggest challenge given the input. Introduce subsidy from the city of Helsinki to reduce green-house gas emission. Develop Kipsari model to have similar restaurant at every big work place or schools where there are more than one canteen. Attention, Home Economics Education plays a crucial role in food choices, and that can happen at every stage of one’s life in various aspects. However, we are teaching our children how to cook with ground beef in home economics courses rather than with fresh egg plant or zucchini as the main ingredient. There are many cooking courses in Suomenkielinen työväenopisto (the Finnish Adult Education Centre in Helsinki), for example, but usually foreign food courses and vegetarian courses are more popular than Finnish or Scandinavian traditional cuisine courses, and naturally vegetarian-foreign-cuisine courses were the most popular ones. Follow one’s life span, discover influential periods — and what people are interested — and utilize them as home economics education opportunities. Aim, especially, pregnant moms and family with


newly born child. In-flight Food Choice as Brand Strategy How do we determine if it is less-harmful to fly or drive? The simple answer is that driving in a relatively fuel-efficient car (10-13 km per liter) usually generates fewer greenhouse-gas emissions than flying. Yet, the typical in-flight food choice is “chicken or beef, sir?”. Although we can choose to have vegetarian or vegan meal in advance when we book the flight, the default let majority of customers choose either one of more harmful options. What if the default is the other way around? One can still choose to eat non-vegetarian meal while booking the flight, what you’re given by default may as well be vegetarian or vegan. Although this is not the easiest step for a business to take in turbulent economy and the menu has got to be interesting so that word-of-mouth keep travelling, you will differentiate by being the first airline on this planet to be crazy enough to do so, and get a massive free exposure on media all around the world. What would you expect more as an airline? Help the airline you’re working for to take the chance, or tell someone who is! Take Ownership, S Group Owners! Do you hold a S Group membership card? If so, you’re one of the owners of the cooperative. S Group’s market-share accounts for 44% of whole retail grocery sales in Finland, and thus has a immense impact on people’s food choices. ‘One of S Group’s values is to carry responsibility for people and the environment. Since S Group is a company owned by 1.9 million Finns and its decisions and policies affect the everyday life of almost all Finns in one way or the other, responsibility needs to be part of its everyday actions and decision-making,’ says S Group’s website. Yet, S Group is failing to guide their customers in healthier and more sustainable direction while working hard to provide what the customers want even if that may mean importing beef from South America or diseases Help S Group test a retail prototype with no meat and dairy for limited time that boasts healthier and greener choice.

S-Group 44% Suomen Lähikauppa 9%

K-Group 35%

Lidl 5% Others 7%

Grocery Chain Market shares 2010 (Nielson)


How Little is Good Enough? Although meat and dairy products (MDPs) have long been regarded as good for health, this assumption is increasingly being called into question. In fact, National Food Administration of Sweden in 2009 suggested “to eat less meat, and to choose what you eat with care is the most effective environmental choice you can make. From a health perspective, there is also no reason to eat as much meat as we do today.” People claim that we need to eat MDPs as animal protein is essential for healthfulness. Perhaps surprisingly, however, the health effect of eating less protein than widely-understood essential are poorly understood. We know a lot about what happens when we eat a lot, but we do not know how small is good enough. Nonetheless, virtually no one in developed countries suffer from protein deficiency as we all are eating way more than what we need.


Aggregate studies and work with scientists to set the least amount of MDP intake to stay healthy.



Beef Finland 2012  

Beef Finland 2012 started as a masters thesis project of Seungho Lee at Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture that aims t...