17 innovations accelerating the transition to a circular economy

(Credit: Unsplash)

This article is brought to you thanks to the collaboration of The European Sting with the World Economic Forum.

Author: Emanuela Orsini, Digital Content Specialist, World Economic Forum Geneva


  • The Circulars Accelerator Cohort 2021 is supporting innovators to scale their ideas for a more circular economy.
  • The circular economy, which aims at reducing and eliminating waste and continuing to use safe resources, can help us create a more sustainable world.
  • The Circulars Accelerator, led by Accenture, is collaborating with UpLink, the World Economic Forum’s digital crowdsourcing platform to showcase their 17 innovators.

The world faces unprecedented challenges caused by our current approach to production and consumption. The resulting waste from plastic, textiles, food, electronics, and other industries has an enormous negative impact on the environment as well as on our overall health. In 2019, over 92 billion tonnes of materials were extracted and processed, contributing to almost half of global CO2 emissions. This underlines why the shift towards a circular economy, promoting the elimination of waste and the continual safe use of natural resources, is critical to forging a more sustainable future.

In an important move to catalyze ecosystem action on the circular economy, The Circulars Accelerator launched its very first cohort of circular innovators, Cohort ’21 in February. The Circulars Accelerator (an evolution of the highly successful Circulars Awards) is a bespoke, action-oriented program that supports trailblazing circular innovators across the globe to overcome their barriers to scale. It is led by Accenture, in partnership with Anglo American, Ecolab and Schneider Electric. The World Economic Forum and UpLink – a leading digital platform for scaling innovation and driving progress towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals – are key collaborators of this initiative.

Over the next few months, Accenture, along with partners and supporters, will provide the Cohort with support to scale their impact through advisory sessions, innovation coaching and through brokering introductions to leading experts and investors to further accelerate growth.

The 17 innovators constituting The Circulars Accelerator’s debut Cohort ’21 are driving sustainable innovation across geographies and industries:

  • Algramo offers an omni-channel cross-brand platform technology which enables brands and retailers to sell consumer goods products for the most affordable prices.
  • BanQu is a platform which closely follows raw materials and finished goods from source to shelf to the hands of the consumer, providing supply chain traceability and financial security to workers across the value chain.
  • BIOHM is a biotechnology company revolutionizing the circular construction industry by creating building materials and manufacturing methods from sustainable and natural materials.
  • Circularise has developed a blockchain technology solution to help stakeholders across supply chains trace raw materials from source to product, ensuring no sensitive data risk exposure.
  • Deep Branch is a carbon-recycling platform that transforms carbon dioxide into high-protein animal feed ingredients.
  • Eon offers a Connected Products Platform, Protocol and Network solution which powers circular commerce across fashion and retail by connecting products across their entire lifecycle to reduce waste.
  • Excess Materials Exchange (EME) is a digital matching platform which finds high-value options to reuse or recycle different types of materials or waste for companies.
  • Hello Tractor runs a tractor contracting platform in emerging markets by connecting farmers to fleet owners through an IoT-enabled software.
  • Kiverdi uses NASA-inspired tech to convert CO2 into people and planet-friendly nutrients and bio-based materials.
  • Maeko has developed composting solutions onsite for homes and businesses, reducing food waste from landfills.
  • Mint Innovation has provided low-cost and sustainable processes to recover valuable precious metals from waste streams such as electronics or cars.
  • Natural Fiber Welding (NFW) shapes and molds plant materials including waste into natural compounds, used across different industries.
  • Recykal facilitates transactions for all stakeholders across India’s waste management and recycling value chain to promote more efficient recycling of plastic waste.
  • S4S Technologies converts farm food waste to value added products using their patented solar-powered dehydration technology, so that farmers and rural women can preserve their produce for up to a year without chemicals.
  • SokoFresh has created a scalable and replicable cold storage as a service solution to eliminating post-harvest food loss in smallholder farmer value chains.
  • StixFresh has developed an easy peel and place sticker for fresh fruits which extends shelf life and reduces waste.
  • Wasteless helps supermarkets and online grocery stores recapture the value of their perishable products and reduce food waste via AI-powered dynamic pricing.

Cohort ’21 have joined the growing community of UpLink innovators who are benefiting from collaborating through the platform. Beyond the Cohort’ 21, The Circulars is driving collaboration on circular economy across the ecosystem through the new Circulars Community Action Group on UpLink. Circular entrepreneurs are encouraged to join the Action Group and get involved in this dynamic community. This network enables innovators, experts and others to share solutions, ideas, and fresh perspectives to design for circularity, reduce waste, and transform production and consumption processes, to truly enable the creation of a regenerative global system over the coming decade, The Decade to Deliver.

Join the Circulars Community on UpLink today to access opportunities within the circular ecosystem and be a part of this critical conversation, at this crucial time.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

There’s a global learning crisis and it’s leaving millions without basic skills

Commission introduces surveillance of imports of bioethanol, and remains open to examining requests from other sectors

UN condemns ‘unspeakable’ attack that leaves scores dead in central Mali

Online government services could change your life. But only if you have access to the internet

Yesterday’s “jokes” and sarcasm by Digital Single Market’s Vice President Ansip on EU member states’ right to protect their telco markets

Prevent future crises and empower youth – now!

GSMA Mobile 360 – Digital Societies in Kuala Lumpur, in association with The European Sting

These 4 start-ups are using seaweed to help save the planet

The European Parliament wants to stay in one place

Building a Climate-Resilient Future – A new EU Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change

Climate change is threatening Switzerland’s stunning scenery

Promoting gender equality a ‘crucial contribution’ in effort to restore, protect our planet’s oceans

On Google antitrust case: “Let’s face it, some companies want to hurt Google and it goes as simple as that”

In Pakistan, Guterres urges world to step up climate action, praises support to Afghan refugees

Modernising EU justice systems: New package to speed up digitalisation of justice systems and boost training of justice professionals

China’s impact as a global investor; the Sting reports live from World Economic Forum 2015 in Davos

The quantum computer revolution: here tomorrow, so we must prepare today

UN allocates $20 million in emergency funding, as Cyclone Idai disaster unfolds

Commission welcomes entry into force of EU4Health programme

Gaza blockade causes ‘near ten-fold increase’ in food dependency, says UN agency

Marco Polo’s Dream

What the Corn Laws tell us about Brexit Britain

3 reasons why embracing the circular economy can be powerful for middle income countries

This is what the gender pay gap looks like in eight countries

A Sting Exclusive: why the environment is important to your health, by UNEP’s Head for Europe

Why women have an essential role in biodiversity conservation

Heat-resistant crops, ‘green’ infrastructure, can prepare Near East and North Africa to better tackle droughts – UN agency

Huawei answers allegations about its selling prices

Fear casts again a cold, ugly shadow over Europe; Turkey sides with Russia

Italian banks: It’s Rome’s turn to confront Berlin’s aggressiveness

These six intelligences will drive smart leadership in disrupted times

Maduro ‘brings the truth’ about Venezuela to UN Assembly; says he is ready to meet US President Trump

Brexit: MEPs concerned over reported UK registration plans for EU27 citizens

‘Transformational benefits’ of ending outdoor defecation: Why toilets matter

How much time has the ‘European Union of last chance’ left?

Does research make sense any more? The dire need for new ways to measure success

Universal basic income is the answer to the inequalities exposed by COVID-19

11 innovations protecting life below water – and above it

Health is nothing but the main consequence of climate change

Mali’s ‘self-defence’ groups must face justice, after deadly intercommunal attacks

Just transition in EU regions: support to people, economy and environment

Commission: Gifts of €6 billion and free trainees to ‘help’ poor employers

Commission reinforces tools to ensure Europe’s interests in international trade

It is me

To end deforestation, we must protect community land rights

UN rights expert ‘strongly recommends’ probe by International Criminal Court into ‘decades of crimes’ in Myanmar

Why green bonds are beating all expectations in the post-pandemic recovery

From glass ceiling to glass cliff: women are not a leadership quick-fix

If we don’t protect the ocean, humanitarian disaster awaits

Women’s rights in Asia – how far have we come?

EU-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement sees the light as Moscow’s reaction once more looms

‘Unique opportunity’ to resolve border dispute between Sudan, South Sudan

How India is harnessing technology to lead the Fourth Industrial Revolution

FROM THE FIELD: Faces and Voices of Conflict

Why press freedom should be at the top of everyone’s agenda

It’s EU vs. Google for real: the time is now, the case is open

Amsterdam is developing a fleet of autonomous boats to reduce city traffic

INTERVIEW: ‘Defend the people, not the States’, says outgoing UN human rights chief

MEPs question whether the new Migration Pact will bring about real change

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: