WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
Get Green Vietnam was a project running from 2012 to2015 with the objective to encourage sustainable behaviour change among middle-class consumers in Vietnam. The project was co-funded by the SWITCH-Asia program of the European Union, and implemented by the University of Technology Delft - Netherlands (TU Delft), the Centre for Cleaner Production Vietnam (VNCPC ), and the Asian Institute of Technology in Vietnam (AIT-VN). The precise goal of the project was to educate 1000 people
from the target group, which have influential positions in their social surroundings, how they can act more sustainable in daily life. Jotte de Koning is writing her PhD at TU Delft within this project. Within her research, she is developing and applying co-creation methods in order to contribute to more sustainable consumption patterns.
The focus lies on sustainable consumption behavior because the middle class in Vietnam is motivated to eat more healthy and more sustainable. I was organizing and facilitating co-creation workshops with middle sized companies, which are interested in
sustainable production, and their customers in order to validate or improve the methods she developed.
WHAT I DID
I was located in an office of the Asian Institute of Technology in HoChiMinhCity (HCMC). My task was to find four small or medium-sized companies in the food sector interested in sustainability with whom I could each organize a co-creation workshop. Further to explain them our method and find out where their interests lie and work out a topic and program for a co-creation workshop
with them. Furthermore, I conducted interviews before and after the workshops with each company.
The four companies were: V Herbs, a tea producer who produces herbal infusions with medical benefits, also called functional food, foodngon a small food shop which has a focus on local products; Citifarm a startup working together with a Japanese vegetable producer, who build a greenhouse factory in the middle of HoChiMinh City and works with the farm to fork model, producing biological vegetables in the middle of the city where they are also distributed. The last company was King’s Kimchi a Kimchi producer that produces Korean Kimchi for the Vietnamese market with only Vietnamese products.
The Workshop Agenda
The workshops were set up in the way shown below in general, however, little adjustments were made after most workshops to improve the flow.
Every workshop task focuses one or two aspects of the company (product, Service, packaging or Brand story), on new or existing customers and on a certain phase of creating: ideation, concept development or testing. Furthermore, One or two specific sustainable food behaviours with which the company can identify were chosen as a workshop topic. The structure of the workshops was the following: (see graph 1) introduction of the company representative, then an icebreaker warm-up game to get to know each other. After that different questions about likes and dislikes of certain products or services of the company or specific behaviours were asked to the participants. The main part of the workshops consisted of creating concepts for specific questions in groups of 4-5 people.