A matter of principle

An ethic of care guides design activity, with three distinct characteristics at the core.

Acknowledge vulnerability & interdependence

“The care relationships among humans are part of what marks us as human beings. We are always interdependent.”


Acknowledging “the unavoidable vulnerability of our human bodies” begins to lead us to accept the role of interdependence.  While this may bring about dominant perspectives of typical care roles; mothers caring for babies or daughters caring for elderly parents.  What Ethics of Care offers is an alternative perspective of ethics and care.  This comes in the form of day to day dependence, little acts of care that strengthen interconnection with ‘the other’.

Believe in relationships

“Unless we do care about others’ well-being, ethical principles are meaningless.”


Ethics of care places emphasis on the relationships with ourselves, each other and our environments.  


“Human relationships from the perspective of care, being the most fundamental human relationship.” 

Respond to needs

“Responsiveness in relationships (paying attention, listening, responding) and to the costs of losing connection with oneself or with others.”


Ethics of Care helps us make sense of our world, how our systems have been constructed and highlight’s the dominant perspectives that have informed the design of our society.  But it also points to how we can use care in its broadest sense to ask “how should I respond, instead of ‘what is right?”