“Coffee with impact”: circular economy at Abraps

Event organized by Abraps to talk about circular economy.

Abraps (Brazilian Association of Professionals for Sustainable Development) is organizing an event called “Coffee with impact” to talk about circular economy. Léa Gejer is invited to talk about her professional experience applying circular economy and Cradle to Cradle. Her experience is focus in architecture, urban planning and product’s design.

At first she will speak about how the Cradle to Cradle and circular economy framework has influenced her career as an architect and urban planner. Additionally, how she sees the next steps for the transition of the Brazilian construction market.

She will also talk about differences between sustainability, recycling and circular economy. And she will also bring examples of how circular design is guiding the development of products, buildings and cities, in a way to illustrate possible solutions for effective circular products and systems.

Abraps is a not-for-profit institution committed to strengthening the work of professionals working on sustainable development goals. The institution encourages the connection and exchange of experiences among its members. In general participating and holding events, fostering the construction and disseminating sustainable knowledge. Abraps also provides products, services and opportunities. The event “Coffee with impact” is organized by VISÃO ABRAPS. This is a group of young people from Abraps. They aim tfacilitate the approach of those interested in sustainable themes from an innovative and informal vision.

The “Coffee with impact” event is free. And will take place next 27th July, from 10am to 12pm at Vila Butantan. The adress is R. Agostinho Cantu r 47, at Butantã, in Sao Paulo. To take part you only have to sign up here (only in Portuguese).


Apply for the MIT Solve Challenge of Circular Economy

Applications for the MIT Solve Challenge of Circular Economy are open until July 1. People from anywhere in the world can apply as a person, team or organisation.

What is Solve and why should you apply?

Solve is an MIT (Massachussetts Institute of Technology) program. It looks for innovative, technology-based and human-centered solutions to our global challenges. Through open innovation, Solve seeks a diversified portfolio of solutions in different parts of the world. Every year some challenges are open. In 2019, in addition to the ‘circular economy’, Solve has launched other three challenges: ‘community innovation’, ‘child development’ and ‘healthy cities’.

For Solve program, the definition of “technology-based solutions” is quite broad. In addition to technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain and virtual reality, winning teams from the past challenges thrived with, for example, a vegetable fiber that absorbs oil spills, biodegradable absorbents and cell phone applications.

Solutions are accepted in their various stages of development. Such as prototyping (product testing phase), pilot (the product, service or business model has already been tested in at least one community), growth, scale or potential partnership. It is important to be aware that solutions in the ‘idea’ stage are unlikely to be selected.

How does the selection work?

Solve judges are invited experts and leaders from all industrial sectors. Léa Gejer, founder at Flock, is part of the jury  in MIT Solve Challenge of Circular Economy and of the leadership group for the circular economy. The solutions will be selected based on some criteria. They are: alignment with Solve’s global challenges, impact potential, scalability, financial feasibility and innovative approach. “Being innovative” means including a new technology, a new technology application, a new business model or a new process to solve the challenge. Your idea must be innovative to the whole world. This means that if your idea is new in Brazil, for example, but it’s already common in other countries, it doesn’t work for this challenge.

Selected finalists will attend a live audience at Solve Challenge Finals. If you are selected for the challenge finals, trips to New York and accommodations will be refunded. The solutions selected will form a new Solver class and will build partnerships with the Solve community.

What do I win if my solution is selected in MIT Solve Challenge of Circular Economy?

There is more than $ 1.5 million in award funding available for the Solver 2019 class. If you are selected as Solver, you will receive a $ 10,000 Solve grant. Besides, you will have access to significant additional funding.

Plus, winning the challenge, you’ll be part of the MIT-supporting network. And will receive 12 months of personalised support with community members from multiple sectors of Solve. Through these connections, you will build partnerships to accelerate your work, validate your impact and business model, and scale your solution.

Apply your solution at MIT-Solve Challenge here.

Flock at Construsummit 2018

Today opens Construsummit 2018. The event, will happen during the next two days at São Paulo. It is considered the largest summit of the Brazilian civil construction sector. The event is organised for who is looking for the most recents technologies, innovations and strategies on market of construction. The meeting was developed for directors, construction managers, entrepreneurs and suppliers from all over Brazil.

The event offers the the opportunity to be in contact with professionals from the national and international market.This year, Construsummit will have international speakers such as Jeff Wilson (founder of Kasita), Gerry McCaughey (CEO  of Entekra Inc. and Century Homes) and Masa Noguchi (founder of  ZEMCH network).

Léa Gejer will represent Flock at  Construsummit 2018 .  She will talk about the benefits of  Circular Economy and Cradle to Cradle to the construction market. She will take part atthe panel “How to generate business and social impact in the construction and real estate market?”, with Lilian Veltman (from Alpop), Dorly grandson (from Artemísia), Fernando Assad (from Programa Vivenda), and mediation by Luciene Antunes (from Oficina de Impacto).

The construction sector in Brazil is still very informal, and adopts a linear model in almost all over its processes. Flock’s idea is to show that civil construction has a great potential for circular economy and Cradle to Cradle, through an effective architectural project, where buildings are understood as material banks. This is possible by planning and covering the whole supply chain. As well as using new materials and products that can be reused with the same quality in next cycles.

Casa Circular at Construsummit 2018

Léa will bring up the practical case of the first “Casa Circular” (“Circular House”) . In this project Flock was able to apply the circular economy and Cradle to Cradle logic in the whole planning and construction processes. By showing up this case study, she will bring up the debate about the difficulties and opportunities this model can emerge to the development of the construction sector in the Brazilian market.

Learn more about Construsummit.


The difference between recycling and circular economy – radio interview

During 2018 Sao Paulo Zero Waste Week, Flock participated in partnership with IED SP and the Ideia Circular from ​​the discussion: “Waste, a design flaw”. After the event, “Green FM” radio station interviewed  Léa Gejer, architect and founder of Flock. She talked about the about the difference between recycling and circular economy and prospects for waste management in the 21st century. Léa spoke, for example, about  the transition from the current linear economic system to a development of a circular future.

One of the highlights of the interview was that Léa explained the difference between recycling and circular economy development. “When we recycle a product, it does not mean that the material would  go back to the cycle with the same quality. Recycling works at the end of the line (of production). And that can reduce the quality of the material. And therefore we call this as a downcycle process” explains the architect.

What is the difference between recycling and circular economy?

“A good example is the plastic bottle. We spend a lot of energy to produce it. Let’s suppose we decide to recycle that bottle by mixing it with cotton to make a T-shirt. What happens is that we will mix two primary materials. One from the biological cycle (cotton) with one from the technical cycle (which comes from the industry). When you add the two types of material, you create what we call an hybrid material. And to recycle this hybrid product, you have to reduce the quality from  both the cotton and the plastic bottle. And that is downcycling” continues Léa.

“On the other hand, for the development of circular economy powered by Cradle to Cradle, we work with what we call upcycle. That means we design the products thinking about the two cycles (technical and biological) at the first place. So that at the end of its use, the materials can return to their original cycles with the same quality. Thus, we can say that circular economy is more advanced than recycling. In this framework, we already think in the next cycles of the product or materials from its conception and not only at the end of the production” she concludes.

To listen to the full interview, which addresses these and other issues related to circular economy and waste management, click here and listen to the Green FM podcast (only in Portuguese).

Circular Economy Path Report 2018 brings circular economy theme

Flock, in partnership with Ideia Circular, designed the Circular Economy Path Report 2018. The objective is to disseminate the knowledge developed during the Festival Path. The report summarizes the best moments of the circular economy circuit at the event. It’s an opportunity to understand more about circular economy, and what is going on in the Brazilian scenario. The Festival Path is considered the largest innovation and creativity festival in Brazil. In 2018 the event had an audience of 15.000 people during one weekend.

The festival takes place every year in Sao Paulo, and in 2018, Léa Gejer was invited to be the curator of the ‘circular economy‘ theme. For the the first time of the event, circular economy became one of the main topics. So, Léa was able to join national stakeholders from different practice areas of the topic.

“The festival has raised the theme of circular economy for different  innovation areas in Brazil,” says Léa. “It was an opportunity to bring together a diversity of stakeholders from all the national circular economy scenario”, completes the architect. “Ou work achieved a broad spectrum of the circular economy professionals as we managed to embrace many different areas: civil construction, design, economy, energy, management, technology”. In numbers, 23 experts were together, including architects, academics, engineers, economists, environmentalists, inventors, entrepreneurs, designers and managers.

Circular Economy Path Report 2018

“The importance of the report for those people who could not attend the festival is that they can have an overview of what has been discussed for the circular economy in Brazil” says the curator. The Circular Economy Path Report 2018 is available on the Ideia Circular website (only in Portuguese). 

“Next year, we intent to practice in a hands on style   what was said in this year festival. I mean, we want to make concrete design and action and go beyond theoretical possibilities for circular economy” says Léa. She will take part in the curatorship of the upcoming Festival Path.

To download the document of the Circular Economy Report 2018, it is necessary to enter in the Ideia Circular website. Just make a quick registration and that is it! Click here.

Event “Waste, a design flaw” in Zero Waste Week Brazil

Flock, Ideia Circular and IED São Paulo are organising, during the Brazilian Zero Waste Week (SLZ), a gathering to discuss “Waste, a design flaw” (in portuguese “Lixo, erro de projeto”). The event will take place at IED (Instituto Europeu de Design) São Paulo, on October 19/10, starting at 4:30 p.m.

The circular economy model powered by Cradle to Cradle (C2C) design framework delineates possibilities, new ideas, methodologies, and successful practices that challenge projects to not generate waste, since the conception of products and systems still in the design phase.Yet,, the amount of waste is enormous, as a result of our daily habits designs of constructions  and its materials, most of industrial sectors and a poor management of our cities. This waste production is a reflection of a linear model, where resources are extracted, transformed in products, consumed and discarded in landfills or open dumps.

However,  we believe that products can be designed in a way that each material is to be understood as a nutrient for its next cycles. In this understanding, the concept of waste is eliminated. This design framework  should be applied for building materials, as well as for entire construction and cities, and creating positive effects for users, biosphere and technosphere.

“Waste, a design flaw” (program):

IED, Flock and Ideia Circular

October 19, 2018

4:00 p.m. to 5.30 p.m

Pannel one: Designing for the 21st Century

Mediation: Fabiano Pereira – Director of IED Brazil Innovation Center

Speakers: Cradle to cradle in products, buildings and cities, Léa Gejer, Flock and Ideia Circular

Zero Waste in Smart Cities – Caio Vassão, Founding Member of the Future Urban Scenarios Study Group (CUF – FAU-USP)

Circular perception and design thinking – Christian Ullmann, Center for Innovation IED Br

5:30 PM to 6:00 PM Coffee break

6:00 PM to 7:30 PM

Pannel two: Challenges of circular economy

Mediation: Luisa Picanço – Ideia Circular

Speakers: Challenges in the design and evaluation of circular products – Carla Tennenbaum, Ideia Circular

Challenges to Implement Circular Business Models – Diego Rodrigues Iritani, Researcher CIEC-USP and Founder Upcyle

Fashion Transparency Index Brazil – Eloisa Artuso, Fashion Revolution Brasil



IED São Paulo

Rua Maranhão 617 – Higienópolis – Sao Paulo

Tel. 11 3660-8000

Full SLZ programming (only in portuguese): https://www.ideiacircular.com/semana-lixo-zero/

DIF 2017: workshop design circular

We are featured in the DIF’s lineup of disruptive ideas and innovations! DIF (Disruptive Innovation Festival) is an online festival and the event will be online on November 23rd: https://www.thinkdif.co/sessions/hands-on-workshop-circular-design

The workshop aims to discuss with the public the following questions:

What if we could create products and systems that are healthy and safe for humans and nature, and eliminate the concept of waste?

Circular design is starting to take place in the industry on a world scale, and this session aims to showcase how this idea is being brought into practice in Brazil. In this hands-on workshop, everyday objects will be disassembled with the purpose of understanding how they are (or are not) currently designed and thought to return to their next cycle. The speakers will then introduce the Cradle to Cradle framework to the public and work out ways to apply it to the re-designing of such products.

#thinkDIF #ideiacircular #designcircular