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Repairio - Design for Change

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Project Overview:

Over a four-week hackathon, the team was challenged to create social transformation that shifts users towards greener behaviour and sustainable practices.
Repairio is a mobile application that allows users to conveniently find and connect with handy-people in their local communities to help repair their broken items.

My Role:


  • Conducted primary and secondary research 

  • Created clickable medium-fidelity prototypes

  • Evaluated design after conducting usability tests

  • Design high-fidelity prototype

Teammates: Belinda Hoang, Sharon Mukhi

Tools: Figma

System: iOS

Methodologies: Surveys, Empathy Mapping, Persona Development, As-Is/To-Be Scenarios, Prioritization Grids, Hill Statements

The Problem:

People are not motivated to repair their broken items because they lack the knowledge and tools to repair it themselves.

The Solution:

Repairio provides a community for people to connect and repair each others' items, allowing individuals to engage in sustainable practices.

Our Process

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  • Secondary Research

  • Online Survey

  • Persona

  • Empathy Map

  • Journey Map

  • Wireframing

  • Prototyping

  • Usability Evaluations



90 billion tons of raw materials are extracted and used globally each year.

62% of global greenhouse gas emissions are released during the extraction, processing and manufacturing of goods to serve society's needs.

Linear Economy


The nature of the current linear economic model is not sustainable and has significant detrimental impacts on climate change and the environment. 


The linear way our economies use resources and dispose of them is increasingly putting pressure on our natural systems, communities, and public health.


Transitioning to a clean economy starts with finding smart new approaches and technologies that create economic opportunities out of the materials we might otherwise throw away.

MVIS100_Circular Economy Image_07102020.

Circular Economy

Experts propose a circular economy model that extracts as much value as possible from resources by reducing, reusing, and recycling materials as much as possible to eliminate waste and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

MVIS100_Circular Economy Image_07102020.

Primary Research

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We surveyed 51 people across Canada between the ages of 18 and 44.

We used surveys to understand respondent attitudes towards...


  • Sustainable consumptions habits 

  • Their impact on the environment

  • Their willingness to repair their items 


Our survey also helped us identify current user frustrations during the process of getting an item repaired.

32 of 51 respondents believe it is important to repair a broken item instead of throwing it away;




47 of 51 respondents indicated they lack the tools or skills to do so. 

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What we found...

Respondents were unable or unwilling to repair their items because they lacked the necessary skills and or tools for the task. They also considered repairments to be too time consuming, inconvenient, expensive and difficult to find in their communities.

Our users are often in a position where they are forced to throw away a broken, yet repairable item and buy a replacement or alternative.

Current User Frustrations

Q. If I don't repair a broken item, it it typically because (select all that apply):

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"I don't have the skills or tools"

"It's inconvenient for me"

"It's too time consuming"

"Repairing services are expensive"

"Repairing services are difficult to find"


Based on our user research, we created a persona named Liam to help us frame the problem from a human-centric perspective, and to understand our users' needs, experiences, behaviours and goals. 

Persona - Liam Archibald


Empathy Map

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Our Vision

To help foster a community that practices sustainable consumption.

Our Mission

To create a digital space for people to connect with each other, share their expertise, and repair their broken items.

Introducing Repairio

Give it a second chance!

Repairio is a mobile application that allows users to conveniently find and connect with handy-people in their local communities to help repair their broken items.

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Users can conveniently post, browse, and offer to help repair broken items for people in the community.

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Repairio also allows users like Liam to instantly see and track the good they are doing in the world - one repair at a time!

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We also visualized Liam's process of using Repairio with a journey map.

Liam's Journey Map

When then visualized Liam's process of using Repairio with a journey map.

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Think-aloud activities were deployed as usability tests to asses whether our presentative users had any difficulty completing a given task. Based on our findings, the following changes were made:

We simplified the introduction text to make it more friendlier and welcoming for first-time users.

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We added product categories for users to find specific items more easily in the volunteer-to-repair tab.

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We also added a share feature to specific item posts in order to make it easier for users to promote each others' repair postings.

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Medium-Fidelity Storyboard

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High-Fidelity Storyboard


Repairio can...

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People are not motivated to repair their broken items because they lack the knowledge and tools to repair it themselves. It is also inconvenient, time-consuming, and costly for people to have their items repaired by professional services.


Repairio empowers individuals by providing a community for people to connect and repair each others’ items - allowing them to engage in sustainable practices while benefiting both individuals and the environment!

Next Steps...

Our next steps for Repairio would involve:

  • Adding a second persona. In addition to getting your item fixed through Repairio, you can offer your talents or tolls to help repair another person's item. As such, we would conduct additional research with those who repair regularly to gain a better understanding of the repair process from an alternative-user perspective.

  • Drive incentive. We intend to have Repairio be a community-based application that aims to have a positive impact on social behaviour. As such, we plan to include advertisements and sponsorship from local businesses and apply for government funding through the EcoAction Community Funding program.

What I Learned...

I am absolutely ecstatic about placing top 10 at Design for Change! Every Hackathon teaches me something new, so being able to achieve this much means a lot to me.

  • Combining Interests with Design. Climate Action has also meant a lot to me as a designer in his 20s. Being able to work on something I was interested in evidently paid off, as I was able to take what I have been learning in school and apply to a project that truly resonates with my values.

  • Polishing Pitches and Receiving Feedback. Feedback is always important! Design for Change offered opportunities to speak to mentors and practice our project pitch, which I thought to invaluable as we managed to incorporate all of their criticism into our final design.

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