November 3, 2017

Designing out waste: five guidelines for a circular festival

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Metabolic consultant Nadine Galle spoke recently at ADE Green, the conference on sustainability, innovation and social change in the music industry. She showed how it is possible to redefine the current festival model into one that is inherently circular and regenerative by nature, but most importantly, how festivals can act…
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November 2, 2017

The potential of nature-based solutions to help engineer resilience into Sint Maarten’s redevelopment

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Metabolic has partnered with Utrecht University to explore the role nature-based solutions (NbS) can play in improving the resilience of small island states. Here, student Jack Hedger reflects on the experience and outlines how the partnership helped identify practical ways that could be applied to assist the sustainable redevelopment of…
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October 19, 2017

‘Values’ drive business success – here’s how to bring them to life

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On World Values Day, we are looking at how values drive our organizational success and help us further reach our mission. Here Metabolic Communications Director Adam Stones provides the golden rules for how every business can build their own core company values, and bring them to life to accelerate change.…
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October 13, 2017

Circular clothing: the next step in sustainable fashion

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It is an unfortunate fact that clothes, even those made of organic, low impact or recycled materials, are often not reused or recycled themselves. The majority end up in landfill or are incinerated. Inspired by our recently launched partnership with Fashion for Good, Metabolic communications intern Hanna Dijkstra looks at…
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October 6, 2017

Tackling Beijing’s Freight Challenges through Systems Thinking

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Freight in Beijing is essential to provide goods to the city’s 20 million residents. Yet this comes with tremendous impacts: air pollution, carbon emissions, and traffic and congestion, to name just some. Efforts for change have so far come with mixed results. Working with the Smart Freight Centre, we delved…
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September 27, 2017

Empowerment: why inspiring, educating and resourcing a new generation of changemakers is essential for driving change

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Our mission at Metabolic is to transition the global economy to a sustainable state. That is no small ambition. And so to get there, we believe it is essential that we not only provide consulting services and build new transformative ventures, but that we also provide a range of programs…
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September 25, 2017

Ending hunger: as the SDGs turn 2, how we can we realise one of its biggest challenges?

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The second global goal for sustainable development (SDG) calls for us to not only end hunger, but also promote sustainable agriculture and improve food security and nutrition – three interdependent objectives that ultimately call for a transformation of the food system as a whole to a truly sustainable state. As…
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September 22, 2017

How to set up your own plastic recycling plant: lessons from Metabolic Foundation’s Plastic Beach Party in Aruba

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 The Caribbean island of Aruba imports more than 6,000 tons of plastic each year. With no recycling facilities, plastic waste poses a direct threat to the island’s environmental and social health, as well as its tourism industry. Tony Sevold of Metabolic Foundation discusses the launch of a small-scale plastic recycling…
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July 19, 2017

ISLANDS AS LIVING LABS FOR CIRCULAR ECONOMICS

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Islands have fascinated scientists for centuries as key hotspots of change. Now, economists are taking a keen interest in their role towards accelerating the circular economy. This summer, Metabolic will collect data, visualize, map, and analyze all resource flows on the Dutch Wadden Island of Vlieland. With this comprehensive overview,…
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July 12, 2017

Why Metabolic’s 150-strong alumni community is a powerful tool for change

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For Metabolic’s recent five year celebrations, we hosted our first alumni reunion party to reconnect former and current interns and staff. Metabolic Marketing and Communications Intern Hanna Dijkstra looks at how the reunion was not only a chance to learn about what our alumni have been up to, but was…
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July 5, 2017

From Waste to Resources: How to Transition to Circular Festivals

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Festivals have become synonymous with summer, and the season is well and truly underway. More than 1,300 festivals will take place in the Netherlands this year, of which more than 1,000 are music festivals. Amsterdam alone hosts over 300 festivals. But all this fun also means a lot of waste…
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June 12, 2017

Over the Years: Lessons from Metabolic’s R&D

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Since its founding, Metabolic has experimented with a variety of product design trajectories that have aimed to make clean technology more affordable and scalable. For our 5-year anniversary, we take a look back at some of these projects and share some of the lessons we’ve learned; we outline how a…
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June 7, 2017

Laying the foundation for circular buildings

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Metabolic – together with our partners at SGS Search – has developed  the world’s first roadmap for circular building tendering. Created for the city of Amsterdam, the roadmap was recently officially presented by the city to the Dutch Green Building Council as a marker of the city’s endorsement of its…
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May 24, 2017

Why cities and regions hold the key to accelerating the circular economy

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As Metabolic launches three services aimed at helping cities and regions to transition to the circular economy, here we look at the economic and environmental challenges faced by urban and regional governments (as well as by some larger regional businesses), and how transitioning to a circular economy can not only ensure long…
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May 10, 2017

Metabolic’s top sustainability reads

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Looking for a deeper understanding of sustainability and circular economics? Then we have the books you need to add to your summer reading list. Exponential growth in our population and increasing resource demands are putting pressure on the planet like never before, establishing a clear case for a thriving, ‘circular’ economy.…
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April 12, 2017

Changing the Food System through Impact Ventures

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The Global Food System is one of the most complex and impactful systems on the planet. How might social enterprises play a role in addressing some of its key challenges? As part venture building company, Metabolic believes that a social enterprise is a uniquely capable vehicle for solving global challenges at…
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March 17, 2017

10 ways to shift consumers towards sustainable diets

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If we want to address sustainability in the global food system, we must pay attention to ways we can influence consumer behaviour. They are a major force in the global economy, with their purchases representing about 60% of the world’s GDP. Their purchase decisions have important impacts through market demand…
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February 16, 2017

Metabolic features in film from The Economist

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Metabolic plays a leading part in a new film from The Economist, the influential news outlet that offers insight and opinion on international current affairs. The short film called ‘The Earth Cycle: Making Environmentalism Pay its Way’ looks at some of the basic building blocks of a circular economy and what needs…
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February 15, 2017

InfraTech 2017: Eva’s keynote presentation

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InfraTech is the biennial exhibition for the civil engineering industry in the Netherlands. Eva Gladek, CEO of Metabolic, presented to this year’s conference on how building and infrastructure development relate to the circular economy, outlining opportunities for new value. To view her slides watch the slideshare below or view here. Note…
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February 6, 2017

THE SEVEN PILLARS OF THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY

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We can only define a circular economy if we look to the end state that we want to achieve. In response to the shortcomings of other current descriptions, here Metabolic’s Founder and CEO Eva Gladek presents Metabolic’s ‘Seven Pillars of a Circular Economy.’ Before I outline the seven pillars themselves,…
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January 18, 2017

Is this the year the world wakes up to the Circular Economy?

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2016 will be remembered by many as a ‘what the hell just happened’ kind of year. The list of weird reality fluxes is long and it has a funny hair style. But a lot of really, really good stuff happened too. Unless of course you’re an Anopheles mosquito. But it’s…
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December 8, 2016

Accelerating a Circular Economy in Taiwan

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Although they’re located on opposite sides of the planet and have very different cultures and customs, the Netherlands and Taiwan have plenty in common. Both are roughly the same size, are densely populated, and see the Circular Economy as an emergent guiding light for economic and environmental policy. Both the…
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November 10, 2016

Collaboration key to transforming food system

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Collaboration is key for our transition to a less impactful food system. Thomas Mason, who presented at CropWorld Global 2016 in October, delves into its importance. Our current food system is one of the largest drivers of climate change and biodiversity loss on the planet and has significant impacts on…
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October 24, 2016

Lessons in systems thinking – exploring unintended consequences

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Following  a Circular Economy conference in Brussels this month, Erin Kennedy outlines how a systems approach is the only responsible pathway to sustainability decision making.       At the Circular Economy conference, organised by the Socialists and Democrats party of the European Parliament, it was evident how enthusiastic the…
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October 19, 2016

Impactful work & creative culture – Welcome to Metabolic

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Theo Xenakis is completing an internship at Metabolic as part of his MSc degree. He shares his thoughts on the value of this experience and some tips for future interns. An eye-opening study visit to de Ceuvel followed by an inspiring lecture from Metabolic at my University, Wageningen – a…
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October 11, 2016

Eva Gladek named in ‘Sustainability Top 15’

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Eva Gladek, the founder and CEO of Metabolic, has been recognised for her pioneering work around systems thinking by being named as one of the Top 15 sustainability influencers in the Netherlands. The Trouw newspaper’s De Duurzame 100 is announced each year on the ‘Dag van Duurzaamheid’, a national day…
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April 23, 2016

Spring Update, 2016

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It has been another exciting quarter at Metabolic. We are very pleased to announce the completion of some significant projects. One of the most notable is our analysis of the global food system, commissioned by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). The results of this year-long study reiterate the…
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September 28, 2015

BUILD in Bilbao

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I was fortunate to spend part of last week at the Bilbao Urban Innovation and Leadership Dialogues conference (BUILD for short), organized by the German Marshall Fund (GMF). The GMF focuses primarily on stimulating and strengthening Transatlantic cooperation. To do so, the GMF has built a network of US and European…
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August 16, 2015

A Dry Paradise: Designing sustainable living

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I spent the past week in Southern Spain in a beautiful tourist location. I could let the world know by posting something quasi-nonchalant on Facebook, like “I’m on vacation for a project. It’s a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it.” Add in a picture of a drink at the beach…
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July 13, 2015

Incorporating Spectral Utilities

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This past May, we incorporated our first spin-off as a limited liability company in the Netherlands. Spectral Utilities will focus on providing integrated micro utility systems that provide energy, water, sanitation, food, and shelter in systems that are sustainable and reliable. In the beginning of 2014, our team had come to the…
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June 25, 2015

Opening the Cleantech Playground

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Exactly one year after the de Ceuvel opening, on June 20, 2015, Metabolic and de Ceuvel hosted the opening of the Cleantech Playground. The Cleantech Playground is a living lab exploring how clean technologies can be most effectively integrated into the built environment. It works with the general public and…
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