Rob Thompson, of Odyssey Innovation in the UK, is an Multi-award winning Innovator, a Marine Conservationist, and a Social Entrepreneur. Rob started Odyssey Innovation to find a way to create value out of beach litter and marine plastics, and is now recycling those plastics into kayaks and other useful products. Rob also supports the Paddle for Plastic campaign.
Zaqiya Cajee is a young entrepreneur in the UK who has set up a not-for-profit scheme. SwopItUp helps young people to swap their fashionable clothes, so they can experiment with different trends, colours, shapes and so on, without being part of the throwaway culture – and save money!
We’ll hear how SwopItUp is developing technology to engage users and to help overcome the challenges of distancing during lockdow, to reduce the risk of the virus spreading via the clothes, and to track and analyse swapping trends.
We talk to Lieke van Kerkhoven, Co-founder of FLOOW2 Healthcare.
Lieke aims to drive the global change towards a circular economy, by bringing the innovative concept of sharing to the healthcare sector. FLOOW2 is a business that helps other organisations to share all sorts of resources. It helps ‘intensify’ resource loops, so we can get more use and productivity out of many different kinds of resources, everything from equipment to staff. Back in 2012, FLOOW2 Healthcare became the first sharing marketplace for healthcare organizations, making it easy to share equipment, services, facilities, knowledge and skills within, or between organizations.
Lieke has a professional background in healthcare. She studied medicine and over the following 10 years, she held managerial and organizational positions in healthcare organizations in The Netherlands and abroad. She experienced first-hand how much organizations can benefit from sharing their assets, in the first place financially, and also socially and environmentally.
In this episode, Catherine talks to Dan Dicker,the Founder and CEO of Circular&Co, the new brand name for ashortwalk Ltd and rCUP®.
Dan began his career as a product designer at Dyson, but had a strong desire to live and work a short walk from the sea. So, back in 2003, Dan founded a pioneering Circular Design practice ‘ashortwalk’. Now Circular&Co invent solutions that keep our materials and finite resources in use for as long as possible, whilst preventing them from ever reaching landfill or our oceans.
As well as their range of award-winning products available across 38 countries, they advise, develop, and deliver circular solutions for global brands worldwide, reinventing today’s waste into tomorrow’s Circular products.
We discuss Dan’s design approach, and how Dan believes that businesses going circular have everything to gain financially, as well as environmentally.
We talk to Sophie Segal, founder of the Reading chapter of the CEC, in the south of England. Sophie uses games to engage people in sustainability and encourage us to think differently, to think about the system that we’re all part of.
Sophie wears a few hats, including with Co-CREATE ImpACT – providing innovative social impact training, and Together Dragonflies – Using value creation and innovation to shape new customer experiences.
She helps organisations with their purpose, to design value propositions and customer experiences that resonate. She is also bringing people together in her community to amplify local circular initiatives.
Sophie loves the idea for rethinking existing business models and engagement for the good of tomorrow. Sophie uses value creation, innovation and different approaches to shift mindsets.
In her latest ventures, she uses the transformative power of play with organisations: to bring to life customer focus and engage employees in sustainability and the circular economy.
Catherine Weetman talks to Noreen Kam and Michael Brown about the circular asset management solution they’ve developed for LUP Global’s customers.
We hear about the opportunities for companies to reduce their capex, improve the performance and lifetime cost of equipment, and to recover value from the equipment at the end of its service period. Michael explains how this approach is normal in the airline industry, where often the airline doesn’t own anything – the plane, the engines, even the seats. Everything is owned, provided and maintained by the suppliers – you may have heard of the Rolls Royce example, selling power by the hour so you purchase the performance of the engine, instead of buying the engine itself.
Noreen and Michael realised that many other industry sectors don’t use these approaches, and so they are helping companies benefit from circular asset management, starting with laboratory equipment.
We talk to Greg Lavery of Rype Office, which remanufactures high quality office furniture. We hear why Greg decided that office furniture is ideal for a circular business, how Rype’s customer base is evolving and why people are switching to remade furniture.
A civil engineer by training, Greg has focused his career on improving the sustainability of the built environment. He began by working for Arup and Greg was awarded a PhD in sustainable building design in the 1990s.
He built, from startup, what is now Australia’s largest solar business, Origin Solar, and as a consultant, assisted organisations with innovative sustainable business models, including Masdar City, Interface, Shell and ClimateWorks Australia.
Christian van Maaren is co-founder of Excess Materials Exchange, based in the Netherlands. Excess Materials Exchange is saving the planet by running a dating site, which at first sounds improbable, and then sounds intriguing!
Christian believes the circular economy is one of the fastest and cheapest ways to achieve the Paris climate goals, and we hear how Excess Materials Exchange helps customers measure the value of their exchange options, in financial, environmental and social impacts.
Christian tells us about the kinds of companies and materials they match up, using a combination of blockchain and AI, and how they actively match supply & demand for materials to ensure high value re-use.
Rheaply’s mission is to make the world’s resources more discoverable and transferable through technology. Rheaply combines enterprise asset management with a virtual marketplace, which allows organizations to track inventory and depreciation. It helps people to visualize, quantify and utilize surplus assets, and to offload end-of-life, unwanted assets to organisations that need them.
We hear about Rheaply’s core technology, its Asset Exchange Manager, and how this allows people to highlight those unused assets. We hear about the focus on Zero Waste in the US, and how Rheaply uses gamification to help people become Zero Waste Heroes in their organisation. We also find out why assets that still have value get discarded, and why looking at your internal operations first can pay dividends for resource efficiency and sustainability.
We review the last 9 episodes, exploring key themes & summarising what we’ve learned. Plus, we hear from Geoff van Sonsbeeck, on womenswear brand Baukjen’s packaging approach.
The wonders of online communication mean we’ve been to the United States, Jordan, Uganda, Canada and Ghana in the last nine episodes. We’ve talked to a start-up looking for funding, two social enterprises, two charities, a community cooperative, and several businesses that have been growing for 15-20 years.
If we look at the circular economy strategies of these organisations: five are helping to ‘Close the Loop and Regenerate’, two are ‘Slowing the Flow’ of materials through more durable, circular designs, and two are ‘Intensifying the Flow’ through sharing services.
We’ll also look at how these different organisations are creating value for different groups – for their customers, suppliers, employees, communities – and for our planet.