Extract raw materials, produce, consume, throw away.
It is this linear economic model that has consolidated itself over the course of the years and experienced its golden age during last century’s consumerism boom. Yet the model is now beginning to crack.
The scarcity of raw materials, our clear limitations with regard to energy supply, the worrying environmental situation afflicting our planet and the economic crisis have all slowed consumption, leading us to look towards new horizons.
We now speak about the circular economy: an innovative economic model for which sustainability is key.
Starting from the use of recycled raw materials and natural or renewable energy sources, the circular flow feeds a never-ending chain of production and consumption, culminating in the reuse of waste matter to fuel the production chain once again.
The circular economy is, therefore, a cycle of positive, continuous development that focuses on natural capital, optimises the potential of resources and reduces the risks attached to the whole system to a minimum by managing stock and waste in the best way possible.
It is a school of thought and of business promoted by the prominent The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which was founded in 2010 with the mission of accelerating the transition of the global economy towards a circular model by highlighting the benefits and opportunities associated with it.
Part of the Schmidt-MacArthur Foundation’s strategy is to train future leaders. Through the Schmidt MacArthur Fellowship, the Foundation is able to direct them towards the path of sustainability from the off.
This extraordinary opportunity for growth and development was immediately snapped up by one of the MIP’s very own international full-time MBA students. Giacomo Lucchese Sergi was granted the Schmidt-MacArthur Fellowship and received a sponsorship to spend a week at the London Business School, taking part in the 2015 Summit on Circular Economy.
The Schmidt-MacArthur Fellowship programme is also a unique opportunity for exchange, dialogue and networking with international students from prestigious universities such as Stanford and Yale, as well as with leading figures in the academic world. Moreover, students are able to interact with some of the organisations associated with the Circular Economy, such as Renault, IBM, IKEA and – last but not least – new entry H&M, which recently became a global partner of the foundation in order to help guide the world of fashion towards sustainability.