Many European citizens are interested in addressing environmental issues through a more conscious and critical approach to consumption. At the same time, more than 40% of all consumers know little about the environmental impact of the products they buy and use. Moreover, the impact on the environment is not the only important aspect for consumers: the quality of a product and its price are also important, and for many, dietary restrictions strongly influence their purchasing behaviours.
The ASSET project studies consumer behaviour and develops a technological solution enabling consumers to access the information they need for selecting the products that better answer to their preferences.
The general philosophy and idea of the project is that by supporting better informed individual purchasing decisions and also by sharing attitudes and feedback on products’ aspects, it is possible to foster the emergence of a collective awareness and support the appetite for sustainability, transforming the simple act of personal shopping with possible forms of boycotting and critical consumerism campaigns.
Description of the outcome
Social shopping for critical consumers
The ASSET Platform combines user localization technologies, a sensor network, an open data repository and a smartphone application, allowing the matching of users’ purchasing preferences with product information without the need of scanning a barcode and navigating very specific and often confusing information.
The practical functioning of the project idea is quite simple: consumers enter their purchasing criteria (for example they want only environmental friendly products and are vegetarian) in the mobile application. At the supermarket, they can point their mobile phone at a specific product and can have all the necessary information about the characteristics of it and the degree in which the product respects their criteria.
As such, ASSET is a vital instrument for consumers who already buy on the basis of personal and sustainability criteria, and also for those who have not previously considered with great attention the possibility of choosing on the basis of such aspects due to time or information considerations. With ASSET, it is possible to achieve all these objectives just with a smartphone, an application and a supermarket that has implemented the system. Being an informed, aware and environmental-friendly consumer has never been so easy!
What you need to use it
The solution first requires a supermarket to be interested in providing a more personalised service to their customers. Interested retailers should contact the project team by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Once the supermarket adopts the ASSET solution, their client will only need a mobile phone with internet connection for downloading and using the app.
Do you want to contribute?
In this phase the project team is interested in hearing citizens’ concerns and informational needs about products. People interested in sharing these kind of information please contact the project coordinator at email@example.com
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