Hi there! My name is called Carmen and I’m a product designer from Dublin, Ireland. As a designer, I wish to solve problems and to leave the world in a better state than I had previously walked into. My design/lateral thinking skills are one of the defining characteristics which I would like to say is prevalent in my work and I believe it is how I was able to procure the opportunities which I have been previously afforded. My experience includes a yearlong internship in Cambridge Consultants where I worked on projects with clients such as AstraZenca, Medtronic and Iridium.
re:public is a reusable and universal packaging concept made for the public. The inflatable aspect of the product makes it such that the packaging effectively moulds to the form of the product/merchandise it is trying to protect and in doing so, it secures the cargo and protects it from impact. As a result, it is easy to deploy and to use.
The concept can be said to be a redesign of the current pre-inflated air cushion packaging available in the market—albeit improved so that common complaints are mitigated. One such painpoint is the issue of the pre-filled air pillows taking too much space in the box, especially compared to form fitting Styrofoam and cardboard. From a manufacturing standpoint, this translates into larger packaging dimensions-as well as higher costs because fewer units can be delivered in a single shipment. Some manufacturers try to avoid air pillow packaging systems because they're considered 'uncontrolled.' When the packaging box is way too large, it drives up shipping costs and creates problems for customers because they have more packaging to dispose of. re:public is different to regular air pillow packaging, in that it is able to form-fit.
re:public also considers consumers who are not happy with the current offering for packaging. According to market research undertaken, it is excessive and causes the build-up of packaging waste in their homes. Users have no autonomy on what waste they get sent from companies. Some have turned to collecting and storing the waste material to avoid further waste and to use it for later dates which very rarely happens. This subsequently causes other problems as users have said that they run out of storage space. re:public empowers users to take matters into their own hands and paves the way for more democratic practices in waste management.
The packaging comes with an end-of-life guarantee as re:public takes back all the packaging, guaranteed. Damaged packages are upcycled to new products or material is recycled (which is easy to do as all the materials are homogeneous). re:public is returned to reuse in letter size. Based on International Postal company data, sending a letter has a carbon footprint of 36 grams of C02 per shipment—the equivalent of an e-mail with a large attachment.
By using re:public packaging, consumers can get incentives such as price reductions in online shipping or free shipping when a certain credit has been achieved from the use of the service. Users can also view information about the packaging—or example, regarding the number of times the package has been used via the connected packaging feature.