innovation

  • 8 July 2020

    CE in Estonia

    By Alexandra Kekkonen Estonia is an innovative nation in Northern Europe known globally for its digital ambitions. It is one of the top countries in Europe in terms of start-ups per capita and ranks first in the Entrepreneurship Index by the WEF. The country is a world pioneer in providing public services online – 99% of all public services provided 24/7 online. Thanks to smart e-solutions, it takes only a few hours to start a company and minutes to declare taxes.   Estonia has a small population (1,3 m.) and territory (45,226 km²). Unlike other countries, the country is characterized by strong deurbanization tendencies in 15-years perspective. Another distinct feature of the Estonian society is so-called slow living approach: a large part of the population does not consider economic growth a priority[1]. These trends are enhanced by declining and ageing population (as of January 1, 2020, the share of people over 65 in the population structure of Estonia was 20.04% of the population) Ecological footprint per person is 7.1 gha, whereas biocapacity [2] is 9.5 gha per person, leaving a room for improvement. Approximately 71% of Estonia’s gross domestic product (by value added) is generated in the service sector, industries account for 25%, and extractive industries (including agriculture and mining) – about 4%, mainly oil shale. Estonia is the second largest emitter of CO2 per capita in the European Union and by far the most carbon-intensive economy among the OECD countries. The reason for that is oil shale, sedimentary rock that has been mined in Estonia for electricity generation since the fifties and, since recently, have also been used for liquid diesel fuel production. The country contains second largest deposits of oil shale (2.49 billion metric tons of shale oil) in the EU after Italy (10.45 billion metric tons of shale oil)....
  • 30 April 2020

    Tondo PodCast

    By Paola Vinci – Fashion Analyst at Tondo English Tondo PodCast is the first Italian PodCast that creates a dialogue with startups operating in the world of Circular Economy.  Tondo PodCast collects successful stories, narrated by founders and characters who explain the business models, the circular and the sustainable practices implemented in their startups. With this project, Tondo wants to give a voice to concrete and innovative solutions, aimed at creating a network of realities which operate in the Circular Economy, involving different actors who focus their activities on circularity, social equity and sustainability.    Tondo PodCast wants to spread a circular culture, breaking down communication barriers and raising people’s awareness of the necessity to adopt a regenerative and sustainable system. Through our interviews, experts and founders will tell the stories, the challenges and the future projects of their startups, representing an inspiring model for students, startup founders and entrepreneurs who want to approach the world of Circular Economy. The startups will be selected according to a circularity framework that includes the sustainable inputs and the possibility to convert products into services. These latters can extend products’ useful life undertaking recycling and regenerating processes, key element of the new business models.               The framework has been implemented in different sectors, as demonstrated by the startups that have already joined our project: Mogu, Orange Fiber, Enerbrain and Hexagro. We record periodically new interviews that will be published on Spreaker, Spotify, iTunes and on our social media channels.    You will also find the episodes on a specific section of our website, dedicated to Tondo PodCast. On May 21st at 18:00 CET we will launch Tondo PodCast during a live event that will host the founders of two important Italian startups that operate in Circular Economy. Register here for the live event: https://www.eventbrite.it/e/biglietti-tondo-podcast-live-event-104736794572?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch Italiano Tondo...
  • 20 March 2020

    Mogu

    By Stefano Babbini – CEO at Mogu Mogu creates sustainable and innovative materials, mainly applied in the interior design sector, starting from the idea that it is possible to grow microorganisms, through a fungal fermentation, to structure materials that would otherwise not be consistent. Therefore, starting from these two elements, the fungal strains and the fibers, a line of products has been developed by optimizing the materials according to some process variables, as well as selecting the post-treatments to arrive at high-performance finished products.Mogu’s business model has evolved over time, leading the company to create a functional identity for its target market, interior design and green building. The pillars of Mogu, as shown in the following figure, are their basic technology (fungal fermentation), an approach particularly attentive to design, combined with a strong innovative component related to the bioeconomy sector.The sector where Mogu operates, is that of green building, which is growing at very significant rates, while the products it is targeting are precisely those of interior design, with a focus in particular towards the flooring and the acoustic sectors.The modular Mogu Floor flooring is positioned in a luxury and premium market segment for flooring; the product is the composition of two main elements: the soul made through fungal bio composites, according to a soft and flexible formulation, combined with a Bio PU in which biomass is drowned: this acts as a cover of the final product, generating a product that it is 98% bio-based. The added residual biomasses confer the specific pigmentation of the material, which thus has two upcycling components: the fibers recovered from the textile industry waste that are part of the core, and the filler that also characterizes the aesthetics of the product . This project was also financed by the European Commission through SME instrument...
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