Research area: Circular Economy Design
We strive to develop methods and design principles to design sustainable and circular solutions and to integrate them into teaching and research projects. Our efforts are based on the Butterfly Principle of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and the cradle-to-cradle approach. We examine holistic solutions, from the business model to the production process, and look for ways to close the circuit.
To do so, we apply eco-design principles, research the use of new recyclable materials, and develop procedures to process and produce them as well as researching equipment for material recycling.
Our research projects typically include various phases, from brainstorming to concept development, engineering, prototyping and testing. To find the best solution for the customer, projects are carried out according to the design thinking principle and go through several prototype and test phases. These projects have a special relationship with creative problem-solving approaches, a holistic way of looking at things and also include stakeholders and users in the process.
In addition to our expert knowledge, we use the following methods for our research projects:
- Open innovation
- Cradle-to-cradle product design
- Sustainability assessment using LCA (life cycle analysis)
- Design thinking
- Creativity techniques
- Lego Serious Play
- Industrial design
To develop sustainable solutions in the field of the circular economy, it is crucial for companies to cooperate along the value chain. We help companies to implement open innovation projects and jointly develop systemic solutions that take into account the areas of business model, product development, production, recycling, logistics and traceability. To this end, we offer the Proof of Concept Lab as a neutral and inspiring place where ideas can be developed, and prototypes created.
Please get in touch if you would like to discuss your project ideas with us.
Gabriel Schneider, Head of Circular Economy Design