Alessandro Manetti, CEO IED in Spain and Andrea Marchesi, Director IED Barcelona.

On Monday 30 May, innovation and sustainable entrepreneurship invaded the Istituto Europeo Di Design (IED) in Barcelona in an event held under the framework of the EU Green Week, with some innovative circular economy ideas in the fashion and textile sector accelerated by the European project CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster. The meeting took place on the same day as the inauguration of the EU Green Week, whose purpose this 2022 is to promote the European Green Deal and make it a reality. 

Every year, the European Commission’s Directorate-General for the Environment organizes a week that brings together actors from different sectors and industries to address the importance of raising awareness and taking action in response to the current climate crisis. In this sense, the European project CirCoAx by CircularInnoBooster, co-funded by the European Commission under the COSME programme, held the event “CirCoAX30: Turning the F&T into Circular Industries”.

José Francisco García, Director at the IED Innovation Lab and Leader of the project, moderated the meeting held at the headquarters of IED in Barcelona, giving the floor to CEO Alessandro Manetti. Design and sustainability Expert Ariadna Rovira Lorente also shared with the audience the important role of design in generating a positive social and environmental impact. From the European Commission, Senior Economist and Civil Servant Rudy Aernoudt said that in the textile sector, economy and ecology are not enemies and there is a great opportunity for the circular economy. 

Sharam Yalda, Project Coordinator and Rudy Aernoudt, Senior Economist and Civil Servant at the European Commission DG GROW. 

IED Barcelona spread green and innovation in the panel dedicated to circular economy projects that are providing real solutions to the problem of unsustainability in the fashion and textile sector. Some in the field of design and production such as Smart Equestrian Boots, Reshape Now, Balöop, Hemper and Pyratex showcased the technology, digitalisation, nature-based solutions, and social innovation behind their projects. In the pure textile industry, Agri-Gaya, Hilaturas Rubio and Ribati presented their work in environmentally friendly materials and technologies. In communications and service platforms, the RSF Verification Community and Dcycle x Samples projects participated.

With this second meeting at EU Green Week 2022 – the CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster consortium formed by IED, The Circular Project, Human Nation, Circulab, TEXFOR and the Finnova Foundation – which had already participated in 2021, reaffirmed its commitment to the transformation of the second most polluting sector in the world. This was made clear by Sharam Yalda, Project Manager, explaining the values of cooperation and collaboration that are transmitted in CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster and the interest of its members in founding a circular leadership and a new human economy.

Next Monday 27th June at 17:00 CET, in commemoration of the International Day of Micro, small and medium enterprises, will take place the third and last round of official presentations of the 30 accelerated by CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster. At the end of these events, the audience will be able to vote for their winning project of the Nextextile Startup Europe Awards 2022 through the project’s social networks. Project manager Adrian Noheda explained the European competition at this meeting and some additional funding opportunities for companies such as the LIFE programme, which turns 30 years old in 2022. The competition will also involve the entities accelerated throughout the COSME programme of the NextextileGeneration cluster. 

About COSME   

COSME is the programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises by the European Commission’s Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME).  

This programme assists SMEs to develop their business models, to obtain funds and to internationalise. This scheme also supports public administrations to enhance the entrepreneurial environment and to facilitate the economic growth of the EU. During the funding period of 2014-2020, this programme allocated €2.3 billion to support SMEs.

About IED   

Istituto Europeo di Design is an academic institution working in education, training, and the research of fashion, design, visual communication, and management. IED has offices in Spain (Madrid and Barcelona), Italy (Milan, Rome and five other cities) and Brazil (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro). IED works in several EU and COSME countries through collaborations and arrangements with institutions, business support organisations, teachers, experts, and mentors. IED has an extensive network of connections in the fashion and textile sector (F&T).  

About Finnova  

Finnova es una fundación que trabaja para la promoción y el desarrollo de la innovación y el espíritu empresarial a nivel de la UE. Con sede en Bruselas, opera a través de colaboraciones y asociaciones en todos los países de la Unión Europea. La experiencia de Finnova liderando actividades de comunicación y difusión de proyectos europeos se combina con una sólida experiencia probada en la creación de empresas y programas de apoyo empresarial, como aceleradoras, incubadoras y selección y adjudicación de eventos ceremoniales.   

About Texfor  

Texfor is a leading textile association in Spain with roughly 400 members. Founded in 2010 and based in Catalonia, Texfor brings together enterprises from the textile value chain, i.e. from weaving to fabrics as well as accessories, textile finishing, printing, and dyeing for the dressmaking industry, textiles for households and technical and industrial applications. Texfor has an extensive expertise as it has worked in relevant expert committees at an EU level: university and professional training, developing financial capacities, cross-cutting collaboration, fostering RDI, specialised services, and leadership in sustainability focused on the circular economy.  

About Circulab  

Circulab is a laboratory and design studio specialising in developing transformation methods, tools and programmes to help enterprises adopt circular and sustainable business models. Circulab has designed a number of tools to implement a circular business model in enterprises. It works in 23 countries – 9 out of them in the EU – and it supports projects via 60 independent entrepreneurial consultants. It applies circular methodologies and tools.  

About The Circular Project co-designed with HumanNation  

TCP (The Circular Project) favours and promotes a circular and sustainable fashion in different areas, offering the fashion industry a communication strategy based on a cross-cutting and systemic approach of the circular economy. TCP combines social, ethical, environmental and economic aspects, and has a strong presence and connections in the sustainable fashion world.  

TCP has promoted the Circular Sustainable Fashion Week Madrid, a one-of-a-kind event, and also serves as HQ for the Spanish Association for the Sustainability, Innovation and Circularity in the Fashion Industry. TCP is also ambassador of Sannas (Triple Bottom Line Business Association) and has collaborated in a wide array of Spanish, European, and Latin American institutions and enterprises.  

The Circular Project works with Human Nation to co-design and develop CirCoAX. HumanNation is a consultancy enterprise specialising in the development of transformative and disruptive ecosystems of innovation and companies for the ‘new economy’. It is based on the fourth economic sector, the systemic thinking, and co-creation. It raises awareness in organisations and ecosystems to respect the planetary boundaries and the social fabric, creating resilient local economies with a global perspective.