Raz Godelnik

Raz Godelnik is an Assistant Professor and the Co-Director of the MS in Strategic Design & Management program at Parsons School of Design in New York. Currently, his research projects focus on the impact of the sharing economy on traditional business, the sharing economy and cities’ resilience, the future of design thinking, and the integration of sustainability into Millennials’ lifestyles. Raz is the co-founder of two green startups – Hemper Jeans and Eco-Libris and holds an MBA from Tel Aviv University.

window shopping

How to Get Consumers to Walk the Sustainability Talk When it Comes to Fashion

If you look at studies exploring consumer attitudes, you find that consumers indeed seem to be more conscious about sustainability and are more willing to incorporate it into their decision-making process. Yet, when it comes to actual behavior, (almost) all of these good intentions disappear somehow, and sustainability or corporate responsibility doesn’t seem to make much of a difference for most consumers. Hence my question is: Why is it that whenever we find ourselves at the store or the supermarket we forget all the good intentions we had back home?


Is H&M Serious About Making Fashion Sustainable?

A couple of weeks ago, H&M released its 2013 sustainability report. We took a look inside to find out whether the company is serious about making fashion sustainable.


Can Fast Fashion Really be Sustainable?

“If a positive can be found, it’s that Rana Plaza has been a turning point – the 21st Century equivalent of New York’s 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire which killed 146 but led to a unionized, safe garment industry,” Dolly Jones wrote on Vogue earlier this month.


The Link Between Walmart, Food Stamps and CSR

A recent report from Americans for Tax Fairness estimates that Walmart workers relying on public assistance programs due to low wages cost American taxpayers $6.2 billion a year. Another interesting figure presented in the report was that Walmart has captured 18 percent of the SNAP (food stamps program) market. It got me thinking that if a substantial number of Walmart’s employees in the U.S. (1.3 million in total) receive food stamps, then the company actually profits twice from paying low-wages.


Partnership Between GE and Quirky Presents a ‘Truly Brilliant’ Air Conditioner

Presented earlier this month, Aros, which is described as a “truly brilliant air conditioner,” is the result of an ongoing collaboration between General Electric and Quirky. What makes Aros interesting is not just the fact that it is the first “brilliant” AC and how it advances the vision of Internet of Things, but also what it means in terms of the relationships between the new collaborative, open economy and the more traditional one.


CSR Lessons From Mobile Industry’s ‘Kill Switch’ Opposition

A growing number of policymakers and law enforcements officers believe that a “kill switch,” which would make smartphones useless when stolen, is the best solution to the “epidemic of violent smartphone thefts.” But U.S. wireless carriers don’t seem to think it’s such a great idea.


Will the New ‘Food Porn Index’ Get People to Upload More Photos of Healthy Food?

FoodPornIndex.com is a new website showing hashtags and mentions of 24 different food items on social media, where half are vegetables and fruits and half are mostly junk foods. Visitors can see the number of mentions for each item, as well as a tally for each group. As of last weekend, the unhealthy foods counted for 72.2 percent of the mentions online while the healthy foods counted for only 27.8 percent. Will this website be able to change this balance of power?

Tallinn, Estonia

The Value of a Free Ride On Public Transit? Not Much, According to New Study

On Jan. 1, 2013, Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, became the first European capital to extend free public transport to all of its 430,000 residents. One of the main drivers was mobility for all, but does it really work? Is making public transportation free actually increasing mobility? While it might take some time to evaluate the economic impact of this change, a new study of three researchers from the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology provides an initial outlook into the changes in ridership following the introduction of free rides.

subway sandwich

Redefining Fresh? Subway Removes a Chemical From Its Bread After Public Outcry

Subway recently announced that it will remove Azodicarbonamide, a chemical used in yoga mats, shoe rubber and synthetic leather, from its bread. While the shift came after a blogger’s petition for the removal of the chemical went viral, the sandwich chain chose to ignore the petition in its statement.

natural granola

Should We Applaud PepsiCo for Replacing “Natural” with “Simply” in Its Products?

Why has PepsiCo gone through the trouble of changing the names of so many of its products, omitting what seems to be a key part in the marketing strategy of these products? According to Candace Mueller-Medina, a spokeswoman for PepsiCo’s Quaker brand, this is quite simple. “We constantly update our marketing and packaging,” she said. Apparently though, the answer is a bit more complicated.


Google Buys Nest – But Sustainable Design Not a Factor

Nest does a lot of things – but the fact that it makes simple, beautiful, thoughtful and desirable products that help people make their lifestyles more sustainable didn’t factor into the acquisition or the purchase price. Is that a problem for sustainability enthusiasts?