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The industrial economy could be described as wasteful - it rewards the extraction of finite materials and generates large quantities of waste at the end of life. In other words, it’s about throughput and ignores the use of goods.
Digital technologies and new business models are opening up the possibility of an economy based on the idea of stock optimisation. What if people or firms paid for the performance of goods and then handed them back when they no longer needed them? There is growing evidence that this is a smart route to take, generating positive returns for society, for the environment and for the economy.
Watch Walter Stahel explain more in this video.
Prof. Walter R. Stahel has been founder-director of the Product-Life Institute (Switzerland), the oldest established consultancy in Europe devoted to developing sustainable strategies and policies, since 1983. From 1986 to 2013, he was also director of risk management research of the Geneva Association. In 1971, he graduated from ETH Zurich with an MA in architecture. Walter is a full member of the Club of Rome.
In 2005, he was nominated Visiting Professor at the University of Surrey, UK; in 2016 at l’Institut EDDEC (environmement, développement durable et économie circulaire), Montréal, Canada. In 2013, Walter received a doctorate honoris causa from the University of Surrey; in 2016 another one from l’Université de Montréal.
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