Chris Diplock is the Founder and CEO of The Thingery, the parent organization of neighbourhood Thingery branches, and a leader in Vancouver’s collaborative economy. You could describe the Thingery as a ‘library in a box’ – the box being a shipping container! The containers are solar-powered and so can be sited in disused spaces near the communities that will use them. Technology allows people to access the container and then use the built-in systems to easily log what they are borrowing or returning. That means it is less reliant on volunteers, and can be open 24/7 if needed. Chris wants to make it easy for any community, worldwide, to set up their own Library of Things. We hear about the concept, the funding model, and the practicalities.
the sharing economy, shared services etc
Chris Hellawell is founder and director of Edinburgh Tool Library, which works like a lending library, sharing tools rather than books.
Chris is passionate about the concept of sharing as a way to tackle the climate crisis, and also as a way to save money, and to build social connections in communities. By sharing, everyone is richer.
The Edinburgh Tool Library started out as a set of shelves in a spare room. Now it’s a city-wide organisation with multiple sites, including a tool maintenance depot, two wood workshops, a library and a police box. The Library runs classes, youth programming, skills development for disadvantaged groups, and a volunteer programme transforming community spaces throughout the city.
The circular economy’s ‘inner loop’ – reuse, reselling and sharing – forms the core of winning circular strategies. We explore examples of each, look at why you might be missing some of the benefits, and remind ourselves why recycling should be a lower priority.
The bottom line is this: if you aren’t working out how to tighten the loop in your business ecosystem, with strategies to reuse, resell and share, then you’re missing out on the biggest wins.
Even worse, you’re leaving value on the table for your competitors.
Whilst recycling seems much better than landfill, for most products it’s an expensive, energy intensive and ineffective option. This article sets out the case for adopting other circular economy strategies, or ‘loops’, explaining why the inner loops are better for business and society.