Adam Fairweather and his partner Rosalie McMillan run Smile Plastics, a circular economy business that reimagines local waste streams to make beautiful materials for the built environment. We talk about Adam’s approach to design, and his ethos that ‘material language’ can communicate messages to people through design, creating socially, emotionally and industrially durable products. We explore some of the wide range of projects Adam has been involved in over the last couple of decades. Adam tells us about his plans for decentralised manufacturing, forming an industrial ecosystem to reimagine waste.
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.
Back from Helsinki, Peter shares his thoughts on the World Circular Economy Forum (WCEF 2019). There were plenty of links to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and lots of discussion (though no solutions) to the challenge of measuring circularity. Peter includes some circular economy examples from Europe and Africa, and tells us about the highlights of session focussed on bioeconomy solutions for plastics.
Ecodesign expert Katie Beverley describes herself as a ‘critical friend’ of the circular economy. We dig into Ecodesign principles to find out more, and explore how Ecodesign could add value to circular solutions. Katie explains the benefits of user-centred and systems-thinking approaches. We discuss the business ‘ecosystem’, remanufacturing and the circular economy’s potential for local job creation and social benefits, and Ecodesign expert Katie Beverley describes herself as a ‘critical friend’ of the circular economy. We dig into Ecodesign principles to find out more, and explore how Ecodesign could help overcome the ‘teething problems’ of circular solutions. Katie explains the benefits of user-centred and systems-thinking approaches. We discuss the business ‘ecosystem’, remanufacturing and the circular economy’s potential for local job creation and social benefits, and Katie tell us about a range of projects she’s supported as Senior Research Officer with Ecodesign Centre, PDR, at Cardiff Metropolitan University in Wales.
Peter was invited to join the conversation on Episode 12 of the Old Fox, Young Fox long-form podcast. The wide-ranging discussion covered the circular economy, Peter's work supporting circular progress in Brighton and Africa, economics, politics, The Blue Economy and much more.
Tom Harper talks to Catherine Weetman about some of the circular economy projects he has introduced to Unusual Rigging Limited, including circular asset management. Fuelled by a drive to ‘be the change’, Tom has designed and implemented initiatives including asset management, reuse and refurbishment, new services, and new approaches to product design. These circular initiatives have brought wide-ranging benefits to the company, improving customer engagement, reducing costs and boosting its competitive edge. Unusual Rigging provides rigging and stage engineering solutions to the entertainment, exhibition and special event sectors across Europe.
This first episode is a quick intro to explain what the circular economy is and why it’s important. We’ll explore how it helps create better products and services, and at the same time helps to make a better world. Maybe you already have some green, or community-focussed elements in your business, and you want to go further: to find ways of being more sustainable and profitable! The circular economy can help you do that, and strengthen your business in lots of ways. We’ll talk about the aims of circular approaches, then we’ll break it down into my 5 components, helping you think about each part of your business. Next, we’ll look at the benefits for business, with some examples, so you can think about how it can help your own business.
Catherine's blog for Kogan Page on Earth Day 2019 looks at 3 ways to use the circular economy to help our living planet AND strengthen your business
Peter Desmond's chapter in 'The Circular Economy and the Global South' explores how the circular economy can contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It draws on case studies from Kenya and South Africa.
Katie Whalen, designer of the brilliant In the Loop game, interviews Catherine for her new circular economy podcast series. They chat about why the circular economy is a great opportunity for small and medium businesses (SMEs).