Embracing Cosmopolitan Localism for Sustainable Graphic Design Practices in Ghana



Graphic Design & Visual Art


  • sustainability, ethnography, cosmopolitan localism


This study expands the concept of cosmopolitan localism by Manzini (2010), which supports the approach of contextualised design solutions and not necessarily a global approach due to context differences. The research adopted an ethnographic approach for studying emerging sustainable graphic design practices with the aid of Sustainability Development Analytical Grid and Activity Theory. The results show the practice of sustainability through the aid of Ghana Food and Drugs Authority and Ghana Environmental Protection Agency who checked the content and materials of graphic design products for conformity to set standards. The by-products such as trimmed papers and used offset plates were also converted into other products by the locals and foreign companies implying that developing nations have off-the-grid solutions to their problems and must be allowed to develop their resilience through innovation without forcing them to practice other mainstreamed sustainable design approaches. Design educators can also modify the emerging local solutions with exotic ideas for the benefit of society.

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