Synergies between industrial ecology and service design

Published on the 26th of May 2020
Industrial ecology and service design

Liveworks hosts a webinar to dive into circularity from a design, environmental, and organizational perspective, with Metabolic’s industrial ecologist expert Pieter van Exter.

This webinar investigates opportunities and challenges in the product and customer lifecycle, and best practices for how to accelerate towards a circular economy in this area. Experts Pieter van Exter, consultant and industries lead at Metabolic, and Sanne Pelgröm, senior service designer at Livework, lead the discussion.

‘All that applies to the natural world, also applies to the industrial world.’ – Pieter van Exter, consultant and industries lead at Metabolic

The relationship between our resources and our economy is at the center of industrial ecology. Currently, the economy we’ve been shaping together is heavily reliant on natural resources and energy to make everything we use. A circular industrial ecosystem, by contrast, is comprised of many different industries working together and sharing resources, thereby creating an ecosystem that is more robust, produces less waste, and can provide economic gains.

Watch the webinar to discover circular product design solutions

Industrial ecologists examine how nature works and how it can be applied to industry. Complex natural ecosystems show that adding or taking away one part of a system has implications for the entire ecosystem. The natural world is also founded on the concept of resilience: having a variety of species makes it stronger. By understanding and replicating these concepts in our economy, it’s possible to strengthen it.

For optimal impact, it’s imperative to look at the whole system before it’s possible to know what the solution is. When designing circular products, the challenge is to solve all parts of the puzzle for an inherently sustainable solution, working on materials as well as the business case, social sustainability, and biodiversity. All aspects need to be kept in mind when we design circular product systems and services.

Find out about Metabolic’s work in manufacturing, innovating for circular products, and sustainable supply chains.

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