The world’s population is constantly on the rise, and every year, more and more raw materials are extracted to make products for consumption. These raw materials are finite, and to exacerbate the situation, the used products are largely dumped in various landfills, missing the opportunity for extra value creation, and adding pressure to the environment. What if we all learned from mother nature and her cyclical processes? Adopting a Circular Economy model would allow us to extract less raw materials, add more value to our products, and ‘close the loop’, leaving our environment unharmed.
What does adopting a Circular Economy model (circularity) look like for entrepreneurs and startups? What if all startup incubators and accelerators took the step towards integrating design principles that foster circularity? How would this impact ventures going through these programs and the environment at large?
These are some of the questions that the Impact Hub Global Network has been exploring over the past year. From the initial questions, the network moved to testing and piloting with local Impact Hubs. 12 Hubs across Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America are integrating circularity into their programs.
Impact Hub Kigali is part of the process and has recently concluded the Circular Economy (CE) Acceleration Program, a unique 6-month program dedicated to enabling startups to become more circular. The CE Acceleration program was supported by the DOEN Foundation, the MAVA Foundation, and the GIZ Digital Transformation Center and was designed to leverage Circular Economy principles in supporting startups or companies to identify and capture new opportunities in their product or service life-cycle that will ultimately lead to the sustainable growth of their circular businesses.