Circular Design Forum

CDF Main

»Circular Design Forum« was an international conference on Circular Economy and Ecodesign. Organized by the International Design Center Berlin (IDZ), the conference took place at the EUREF campus in Berlin, on June 14 2018. The forum supported the exchange of know-how and expertise, especially aiming at initiating innovation processes in small and middle-sized companies. Furthermore, it functioned as a platform for designers, design institutions and companies to network and to establish new contacts.

»Circular Design Forum« was part of 2018 year’s »Open Source Circular Economy Days Berlin« and took place at EUREF Campus Berlin.



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    CDF - Opening - Karsten Henze
    Prof. Karsten Henze
    International Design Center Berlin

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    CDF  - Opening -  Bettina Rechenberg
    Dr. Bettina Rechenberg
    German Environment Agency

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    CDF - Opening   - Christian Rickerts
    Christian Rickerts
    Permanent Secretary at the Berlin Senate

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    Keynote by Dr. Arndt Pechstein, phi360 / Hasso-Plattner-Institute Berlin

    With entire industries witnessing disruptive changes and anthropogenic changes happening world-wide, a new mindset and the implementation of new approaches are imperative. Sustainable, systemic solutions gain increasing importance and it seems natural that the design of our products should draw inspiration from the biological world. Consequently, Biomimicry, the discipline that abstracts biological design principles to human problem solving, has experienced significant growth over the past years. Dr. Arndt Pechstein, Biomimicry specialist and expert in human-centered innovation is pioneering this innovation method in Germany and will introduce into novel approaches of problem-solving and bio-inspiration. By forging a positive instead of an adversarial relationship between technology, business, and the environment, Biomimicry promises to be a societal and economic game changer.

    Arndt Pechstein

    As multi-award winning entrepreneur, agile coach, and specialist in Neuroscience, Biomimicry (bio-inspired innovation), Design Thinking (user-centered innovation) and Digital Business Models, Berlin-based Dr. Arndt Pechstein advises organizations in adaptive leadership, resilient and learning networks, disruptive innovation, and digital transformation. Arndt is founder of the innovation firm and founder & director of the German Biomimicry think-tank. He serves as advisor for automotive, banking, pharmaceutical, energy, manufacturing, e-commerce, and education.

    Panel Discussion with:

    » Dr. Arndt Pechstein, phi360 innovation / Hasso-Plattner-Institute Berlin
    » Bastian Schäfer, Airbus Operations GmbH
    » Erik van Buuren, Fundamental School

    Moderated by Stephan Bohle, futurestrategy. strategies for sustainability

    CDF   Materials And Processes
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    Changing Mindsets in a Circular Economy
    by Anne Raudaskoski, ethica

    The circular economy framework provides endless opportunities for businesses, cities and societies as a whole. Regardless of this abundance available to us, we are still quite far from an economy that is based on circular thinking. Could it be that our own mindset is one of the biggest hurdles to overcome? What needs to change so that we could reap all the known as well as still unknown benefits of the circular economy? During her presentation Anne Raudaskoski will highlight some of the essential viewpoints to help us move away from the current linear model.

    Anne Raudaskoski

    Anne Raudaskoski is a Co-founder and Principal Consultant of Ethica, a circular economy consultancy operating internationally across private and public sectors. Some of the latest projects include Circular Economy Ecosystem development as part of the European Raw Materials programme; a circular district concept and business ecosystem development with the City of Tampere and developing the EcoDesign Sprint program targeted at SMEs and design agencies. Ethica was highly commended at the prestigious Circulars2016 competition through the Relooping Fashion project focusing on building the future of textile industry, and the project was also chosen as one of the most innovative circular projects in Sustainia 100 publication.

    Panel Discussion with:

    » Anne Raudaskoski, ethica
    » Frieder Söling, Berliner Stadtreinigungsbetriebe (BSR)
    » Peter Peltonen, RePack

    Moderated by Cornelia Horsch, International Design Center

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    Teaching Materials: »Ecodesign in Practice« & »Sustainability Guide«

    Presentation hosted by SVID Swedish Industrial Foundation

    With the urge to develop tools and gather information to teach and inspire companies as well as faculties, SVID Swedish Industrial Foundation did a survey to find out what questions and needs that were most asked for. The survey result is the basis for a new Sustainability Guide. SVID will present this transnational hub of information, inspiration and methods for Ecodesign.


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    Circular Berlin

    presented by Dina Padalkina

    The project »Circular Berlin« focuses on the acceleration of Berlin's transition to a circular city by developing a common circular vision and identifying an appropriate circular city strategy. It engages different stakeholders from Berlin to develop circular competences, share skills and knowledge on circularity, and to support of practical and scalable solutions.

    CRCLR Circular House

    The CRCLR House is located in the heart of Neukölln between Karl-Marx Strasse and Hermannstrasse. It is on the premises of what used to be the Kindl Brewery, and was formerly used as a storage space. Today it is Berlin’s ground zero for all things circular economy.

    Moderated by Lars Zimmermann, Open Source Circular Economy Days Berlin

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    CDF   Fashion
    Reet Aus
    Upmade Berlin

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    Panel discussion moderated by Marte Hentschel, Sourcebook
    Thekla Wilkening, Kleiderei Hamburg GmbH,
    Jonna Haeggblom,,
    Reet Aus, Upmade

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    EcoDesign Sprint: a strategic tool for a sustainable economy

    Presentation hosted by Design Forum Finland and ethica

    EcoDesign Sprint is an intensive 3-day training and acceleration program targeted at SMEs and design agencies. The Sprint gathers a multidisciplinary team of professionals consisting of designers, a circular economy coach and SME as a client company to focus on the SME’s business opportunities through circular thinking. For the SMEs, the Sprint is a concrete and rapid service/product development process furthering the company’s strategic goals. For the designers, the Sprint provides a great opportunity to learn and embed circular design principles into their own work.

    The overall goal of the EcoDesign Sprint is to develop circular product/service concepts and explore novel business models through design methods. EcoDesign Sprint has been developed as part of the EcoDesign Circle project by Design Forum Finland.


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    Circular Systems Design
    by Dr. Leyla Acaroglu, UnSchool of Disruptive Design / Disrupt Design / Eco Innovators

    With the increase in understanding and excitement around the circular economy there is a strong need for accessible tools and approaches that fit the different types of creatives challenged to activate circular systems. Leyla outlines the systems thinking and circular design approaches that can help transform the creative communities to be Champions of circular change.

    Leyla Acaroglu

    Sustainability provocateur and cultural protagonist Dr. Leyla Acaroglu challenges people to think differently about how the world works. As an award winning designer, UNEP Champion of the Earth, sociologist, and entrepreneur, she developed the Disruptive Design Method and designs cerebrally activating experiences, gamified toolkits, and unique educational experiences that help people make the status quo obsolete. Her mainstage TED talk on sustainability has been viewed over a million times, and she leads presentations around the world on activating positive social change through creative interventions and systems thinking.

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    Workshop #1: »Learning Factory Ecodesign«

    implemented by Fraunhofer Institute IZM and Tapani Jokinen

    The future of design is circular. Do you want to be part of it and become an ecodesign practitioner? The »Learning Factory Ecodesign« is a training open for professionals and teachers. It aims to convey methods and tools to enable participants to design products and services for a Circular Economy. You will develop a meaningful product or service for users, while minimizing its environmental footprint and developing a sustainable circular economy business model for it.

    Fraunhofer IZM

    Fraunhofer Institute for Reliability and Microintegration IZM is part of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and specialised in applied and industrial contract research. Fraunhofer IZM’s focus is on packaging technology and the integration of multifunctional electronics into systems.

    Tapani Jokinen

    Tapani Jokinen is a Design Consultant, Strategic- & Ecodesign Contractor at Fraunhofer IZM and owner of TJ-Design, a creative consultancy that fuses strategic innovation and design with sustainability and ethical business to drive positive impact on a global level. Furthermore, he is Chief Design Officer at Circular Devices, the Finnish startup behind Sustainable Puzzlephone. Tapani is one of the authors of the »Learning Factory Ecodesign« program where he is teaching and facilitating training modules, innovation workshops and lecturing about Circular Design in seminars and conferences. The »Learning Factory Ecodesign« methods and principles are featured in the online web tool »Sustainability Guide«.

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    Workshop #2: »Can we prevent marine litter by better design?«

    hosted by German Environment Agency

    It is estimated that globally 4.8 to 12.7 million tons of plastic enter the ocean annually. This marine litter has severe consequences for the marine environment, its organisms as well as humans. During this interactive workshop, we will shortly introduce the participants to the topic of marine litter with a focus on the Baltic Sea. In small groups, we will discuss, among others, the following questions: How can product design contribute to prevent marine litter? How can products be designed in a way that, should they end up in the oceans, they cause as little damage as possible? What do designers, producers, service developers and engineers need to know in order to contribute in an adequate way to marine litter prevention? What are the opportunities and limitations of sustainable design with regard to marine litter? What are supportive systems? Which further framework conditions are needed so that ecodesigned services and products reach their objectives?

    Participants are encouraged to bring in their experience, knowledge and ideas!


    Founded in 1974, the German Environment Agency is Germany’s main environmental protection agency with its headquarters in Dessau. Around 1,500 employees concern with an extremely broad spectrum of issues, including waste avoidance, climate protection, and development of criteria for Blue Angel-labelled products. The agency’s work centres on gathering and analysing data concerning the state of the environment, and making projections. Based on these findings, federal bodies, such as the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, are provided with policy advice. Furthermore, the general public is provided with information and citizens’ questions are answered.

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    Workshop #3: »Circulab, the Circular Economy Business Game«

    implemented by Phoebe Blackburn and Michel Wolfstirn

    »Circulab« is a gamificated approach imagined and developed by the design agency Wiithaa in order to help organizations seize the economical, social and environmental opportunities of the Circular Economy. Whether you're a corporate, an SME, a non-profit, a local authority or government agency, a university or any other kind of organisation, you can benefit: by finding ideas of how to reduce your negative impacts, such as waste, and increase your positive impacts, such as new products and services and reducing resource costs. It can help map and re-evaluate your stakeholders, so as to become more sustainable and successful.

    Phoebe Blackburn

    Prior to going freelance, Phoebe Blackburn worked for 8 years at French energy group EDF in London and Paris, in communications and CSR. She is a member of the Circulab Network, started in Paris in 2015, with 50 facilitators worldwide, whose goal is to promote the circular economy model using various tools. She also does editorial work and moderating and is a language coach for TEDx speakers and managers. Phoebe is a founding member of German co-operative sustainable natives.

    Michel Wolfstirn

    Michel Wolfstirn is the co-founder of BiomimicryNorway, a non-profit focused on education related to nature inspired innovation. As a consultant he is also providing services related to sustainable innovation using the circular economy and biomimicry as frameworks for finding better solutions in design, engineering and business models. Michel is currently involved in two circular urban farming projects in Oslo. He is a certified Circulab consultant and he is an experienced workshop facilitator.

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    Workshop #4: »BEDA Ecodesign network Kickoff«

    hosted by SVID Swedish Industrial Design Foundation

    The newly formed BEDA (Bureau of European Design Associations) Ecodesign Cluster is a competence network focusing on ecodesign. It is a transnational network designed to bundle knowhow and competences in the field of ecodesign. During the »Circular Design Forum«, SVID Swedish Industrial Design Foundation will host a kickoff for the Ecodesign network. Everyone that has interest to be part of the network is welcome. Participants do not have to be a member of BEDA to join the network and do not commit themselves to be a future member by attending. The kickoff aims to meet and set agenda for upcoming activities and the opportunity to meet new contacts.


    The goal of the Swedish Industrial Design Foundation is to increase national awareness of design as a competitive tool and driver for sustainable development in all innovation and change processes. SVID aims to develop and deepen the understanding of design and design methodology in businesses, the public sector, research and society in general. The foundation operates cross-functionally where they can link actors, disseminate knowledge and strengthen the potential for design-driven development. To foster this development, SVID creates platforms and networks where growth and prosperity are developed and nourished.



    Excursion #1:»Smart City of Tomorrow«


    The EUREF campus shows the idea of the Smart City of Tomorrow. The guide will demonstrate along various stations, that smart city is already possible today – with commercially available technology. The general tour gives an overview of the location and its development, a short presentation of the overall idea and will present various local institutions, companies and projects. On the tour the topics of »networked mobility«, »intelligent energy supply« and »energy-efficient construction« are in the focus. These topics presented by visible elements such as electric cars, charging stations or windmills on campus. Please note that the guide can only truncate the topics and that our guides do not work in this specific field, but will give a successful insight into the area and its development.

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    Excursion #2: »Company visits at EUREF Campus«

    Selected companies from the fields of mobility, energy, clean technologies, research and innovation will open their doors and introduce participants in a short presentation to their work. The complete list with all participating companies will be announced soon.


    Founded in 2011, ebee was created to develop smart, compact, and affordable electric vehicle charging solutions. We aim to supply cost-effective and easily-accessible public charging solutions that synergize with other city infrastructure. Today, our company is tightly intertwined with the future of city design and the automotive industry. To achieve this, we operate on standards that make our solutions available for everyone on the market and we offer a variety of products that can be configured to provide the greatest flexibility for the customer.

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