Trust a little to gain a lot

An article by Brian Smits

Almost a year ago I joined a startup called Circularise. Whilst still a small team, we have a huge drive for change. We challenge the odds by developing a standard through which the Circular Economy can be enabled. For those of you who have never heard of Circular Economy I would like to share with you the following:

We simply can not continue the way we, as a society, have been producing our goods and services. Products are build, used and subsequently thrown away. If we keep on disposing of these products and keep extracting resources at this rate, we as a species, in the long run, will be waist deep in trash and short on resources.

What we want is to move from the linear system towards a circular one. Meaning that we maintain, repair, refurbish and in the end recycle products so that the materials that are used to produce these products would stay in the loop. Why is that not happening now? Well, it has a lot to do with trust. In order to properly recycle a device at its end of life, you need a lot of information. Information that is scattered throughout value chains and which stakeholders are not keen on sharing. Understandably, for sharing too much might put intellectual property (IP) at risk.

My son taking a leap of faith

My son taking a leap of faith

In the picture above my son takes a leap of faith by trusting me to catch him. At first it was a bit scary, but after deciding he wanted to try this new thing, and shifting his mindset, he took that initial leap and we had such a fun time (until dad got weary after 150 leaps of course). We kept on going back to that pool for days to come.

What has his shift in mindset got to do with our goal as a company? We want producers, consumers and recyclers to take initial steps to becoming circular, not by trusting us but by getting introduced to our protocol that does not require trust (read more in our Whitepaper) but does enable stakeholders to get valuable insights. This is so to enable the re-use of resources instead of them becoming toxic landfills or to be burned for our energy needs (Come on, I think we have got way better alternatives to produce Energy so let's just try not to do that anyway, shall we?). So if you read this article and feel some kind of curiosity, an urge to help in some way or to share. Reach out to me and I will be happy to tell you more.

Final note as a parent: We can do so much more to improve our way of life while protecting the earth and I invite you all on this journey. I believe it to be our responsibility to have kids (and the kids of the future), like my son, grow up in a happy, safe and healthy environment.

Original article posted on LinkedIn