EIT Climate-KIC and SecondMuse team up to accelerate circular economy solutions in Bengaluru  

The Netherlands, 1 October 2023 – EIT Climate-KIC will work with SecondMuse, a global impact innovation company that has implemented numerous programmes in India and other parts of Asia Pacific, to address the pressing challenges of waste management and urban sustainability in the rapidly growing city of Bengaluru, India.

Urbanisation and overconsumption trends in major cities have placed enormous strain on waste management systems, resulting in a surge in waste accumulation and only a fraction of it being recycled or transformed into beneficial forms. 

Bengaluru has made a phenomenal rise into the world’s 8th largest tech hub in the world-home now to 80 per cent of the world’s IT companies. Processes and solutions for waste prevention and waste management have not been able to keep up with the pace of this development, with 5,000 metric tonnes of waste generated daily at an average rate of 0.5 kg per capita. 

Applying Circular Economy principles can effectively address challenges in waste prevention and management. 

Implementing a self-sustaining innovation cluster that benefits marginalised groups 

The partnership will implement EIT Climate-KIC’s self-sustaining “Innovation Cluster” approach to foster collaboration and drive the development of innovative solutions and entrepreneurship. Innovation Clusters serve as collaborative platforms that unite diverse stakeholders, including businesses, universities, citizens, investors, governmental agencies and NGOs.  

The project puts emphasis on the role of the informal sector and marginalised groups, by supporting access to essential services and job opportunities. It is set to unfold in three phases over a three-year period from now until June 2025. 

In the first step, a baseline study will be carried out to align key stakeholders who will take part in the project’s implementation and to outline existing interdependencies and opportunities for collaboration. In the second stage, the project will build capacities for entrepreneurship and circular economy among entrepreneurship support organisations, representatives and entrepreneurs. This will be realised through the implementation of early- and late-stage ideation and entrepreneurship activities to accelerate the best waste prevention solutions and ensure they are aligned with the needs of the demand. Lastly, the partners will enable stakeholders, local government, businesses, and investors to connect with the lessons of innovators, integrate them in the iterative development of the ecosystem and identify opportunities for scaling up innovations [regulatory, procurement, others] and thereby set the basis for a permanent cluster around circular economy. 

The project, funded by the IKEA Foundation, will work with a variety of stakeholders to create an environment that accelerates waste management and prevention solutions through circular economies.  

EIT Climate-KIC CEO Kirsten Dunlop said: “Innovation Clusters are about building capability, learning and trust, exploring how to meet the needs of local communities, governments, and organisations through innovation that is meaningful in local contexts. Through a shared commitment and collaboration, we are not just innovating; we are actively shaping more sustainable, resilient, and prosperous communities, nurturing entrepreneurship to spark new solutions, drive equitable economic growth and create meaningful job opportunities.” 

“Through the connected network that SecondMuse has built over years of activity in India, bringing communities, civil society organizations, waste management businesses, capital providers, and municipal government together to build a robust circular ecosystem, we are excited to further accelerate practical and impact-driven solutions to prevent and manage waste in Bengaluru” said Simon Baldwin, Global Head of Circularity, SecondMuse. 

Patrick Obonyo, Programme Manager, IKEA Foundation said: “Far too little waste is recycled, reused or transformed into beneficial forms. The IKEA Foundation believes in the power of innovation to drive positive change. We’re excited to see how this partnership can promote waste management solutions and develop healthy circular economies that are good for people and the planet.”  

By facilitating collaboration and innovation, EIT Climate-KIC, IKEA Foundation and SecondMuse are committed to making a significant impact on waste management and sustainability in this dynamic city.  

About us 

EIT Climate-KIC: EIT Climate-KIC is Europe’s leading climate innovation agency and community, using a systems approach to shape innovation to support cities, regions, countries and industries meet their climate ambitions. Together with partners across the globe, EIT Climate-KIC acts to bridge the gap between climate commitments and current reality by enabling decision makers and investors to act. They find and implement solutions in integrated ways and mobilise finance. They build skills to accelerate learning and explore innovation, opening pathways to shift mindsets and behaviours. Through radical collaboration, EIT Climate-KIC orchestrates large-scale demonstrations that show what is possible when cycles of innovation and learning are deliberately designed to trigger exponential decarbonisation and build resilient communities.    

SecondMuse: SecondMuse is a global impact and innovation company that works with communities focused on climate, equity, and tech to build resilient economies that benefit people and protect the planet. Our impact-driven methodology prioritizes collaboration and relational infrastructures with key stakeholders to develop market-driven solutions that transform our current systems. Over the last 15 years, we have designed, developed and implemented a mix of innovation programming and investing capital that have reached over 160 countries and territories. 

IKEA Foundation: The IKEA Foundation is a strategic philanthropy that focuses its grant making efforts on tackling the two biggest threats to children’s futures: poverty and climate change. It currently grants more than €200 million per year to help improve family incomes and quality of life while protecting the planet from climate change. Since 2009, the IKEA Foundation has granted more than €1.5 billion to create a better future for children and their families.  In 2021 the Board of the IKEA Foundation decided to make an additional €1 billion available over the next five years to accelerate the reduction of Greenhouse Gas emissions.

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