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The Circular Mission:
Designing the Irresistible Circular Society

06. Oct 2021
Quick insight
  • What if you woke up in 2050 to a zero-waste world?
  • What if waste was never created in the first place?
  • What if the economy was built on using things rather than using them up? 
  • What if we could not only protect but actively improve the environment?

That would make our circular society of the future as irresistible as it is necessary.

Designing solutions instead of adding to the problem

It’s a painful fact that today, design is part of a problem in our linear economy, where products are designed, produced, consumed, and tossed away, only to end up in landfills all over the planet.

Over 70% of a product’s environmental footprint is defined in the design phase. The good news is that we can leverage the power of design and accelerate the shift to a circular economy. Let’s make design an enabler for sustainable change and growth, benefiting businesses, our planet, and societies. Keep scrolling to read three ways we go about this.

The transition to the circular economy is one of the most critical imperatives of our time and our top priority is our mission to Designing the Irresistible Society.

Luckily, we’re not alone in getting there. We work with many inspiring partners, amongst others the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, and hope for many more to join us on our mission to build and design an irresistible, circular society.

Three ways we can accelerate the shift to a circular economy

  1. Build open and collaborative value chains
    The circular transition is not up to individuals. It requires collective and systemic effort to keep materials in use and design out waste across the value chain.Our collaborations often transcend public, private, and civic boundaries.To get there, we work to strengthen value chain transparency and build new ways of collaboration based on openness, trust, and innovative problem-solving.
  2. Design new and circular business models
    Once a product is designed, there’s no going back. Going circular is about taking advantage of the immense potential of a product’s design phase. It’s here all the important choices are made on how materials are sourced, products designed and treated throughout their life cycle.

    This is a move from treating symptoms to fixing problems. We collaborate with companies on business models that design out the problem. This means building new solutions that are based on value creation, value capture, and value prolonging from the beginning.
  3. Design for behavioral change
    How can we redesign everyday life, so that circular choices are easier, more intuitive – irresistible even?

    Changing consumption patterns to reduce overconsumption is the biggest design challenge there is. We’re introducing a new responsibility towards a product throughout its life cycle. That’s why we constantly explore how we can design solutions that are deeply empathetic to the needs, demands, and values of everyday life.

What is circular economy?

circular economy is an economic system that tackles global challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution.

Most linear economy businesses take a natural resource and turn it into a product which is ultimately destined to become waste because of the way it has been designed and made. This process is often summarized by “take, make, waste”.

By contrast, a circular economy employs reuse, sharing, repair, refurbishment, remanufacturing and recycling to create a closed-loop system, minimizing the use of resource inputs and the creation of waste, pollution and carbon emissions. The circular economy aims to keep products, materials, equipment and infrastructure in use for longer, thus improving the productivity of these resources. Waste materials and energy should become input for other processes through waste valorization: either as a component or recovered resource for another industrial process or as regenerative resources for nature.

Gry Brostrøm

Senior Project Manager

Mail gry@ddc.dk
Phone +45 3115 8670
Social LinkedIn

Do you want to join our circular mission – or hear more about our experiences?

Julie Hjort

Program Director, Green transition

Mail jhj@ddc.dk
Phone +45 2575 8933
Social LinkedIn

Can’t get enough of design and innovation? We hear you. And we have you covered.

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