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Inspire a more sustainable way to retail

Each product we produce, use and dispose has a specific social-ecological impact. Being faced with a very complex product-lifecycle, a consumer cannot be aware of the exact consequences the product might have triggered. With QVC you can tackle the exciting task to create a more transparent lifecycle of their products and therefore help them and their customers to enhance ethical consumption.

To support you in your idea and team generation process, you have the opportunity to participate in one of our digital Design Thinking Workshop - register here or find more information here.


  • ‚úÖ Challenge completed
  • ūüŹĀ Winner
    Congrats to Team Xtraction!
  • ūüŹÜ  Rewards
    20,000 ‚ā¨ prize pool prize pool in the Innovate2030 project + joint publication with all stakeholders + chance for further cooperation with QVC
Important details
About QVC
Design Thinking

This use case is part of the Innovate2030 Challenge

Status Quo

A product we buy goes through an opaque and complex process of modern material extraction, production, transportation, usage and disposal - called its lifecycle. Along it each product has an impact on its passing social and ecological environment.

Studies have shown that customers are more and more interested in consuming ethically produced products. But they are faced with a difficult problem: How can they know the socio-ecological impact of the whole lifecycle from their purchased products?

Seals of sustainability can be an indicator for its ethical and sustainable value ‚Äď but there are more than 1,000 of them from various governmental and non-governmental institutions. Each one of them follows different criteria and indicators.

Retailers, like QVC, have a unique position regarding this problem.
As mediators between consumption and production, they can set new standards on the later. While trying to improve the carbon footprint and overall economic, social and ecological impact of their company and product offer, they can follow the rising demand of customers willing to consume ethically.


Key question

With a broad and diverse product range from multiple brands, QVC has a certain power to enforce new standards in production, usage and disposal.
But to act according to sustainable issues, one needs to be conscious of the whole lifecycle of a product and its consequences. The lack of data and transparency, uniform standards and guidelines pose a huge obstacle to comprehend and tackle this task.

This leads us to the key question for this use case:

  • What would be an efficient way to make the lifecycle of a product more transparent? How can we ensure it to be traced and tracked?

This (data)base needs to be reliable and robust to understand a product¬īs impact along its lifecycle. Having established such a ground base, we must ask ourselves:

  • Can we define sustainable standards for a product and its lifecycle regarding its social and environmental footprints? How could such a guideline look like? Which indicators and criteria need to be highlighted?

You are free to choose one of the stated key questions or combine both for your solution approach.


Product categories

To have a starting point tackling this task, you may choose one of the following product categories. So that you can spin some ideas on a specific example. In the second round of this Use Case you can then expand your solution to a more uniform standard/tracking method.

You find more information about these examples in the section Knowledge base:

  • Shoes: Vitaform
  • Beauty products
  • Accessories: Picard bags
  • Home Textiles
  • Fashion: Dine n¬īDance, Strandfein, In-Print, Little Rose, Kim&Co


Potential Impacts

  • Reduction of negative product footprint
  • Strengthen ethical consumption along the whole lifecycle
  • More sustainable company and society
  • Inspire & educate customer

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