Schmidt-MacArthur Summer School: Day 2

June 18, 2013

Day 2 of the summer school saw the fellows and mentors explore business models for a new economy in a session led by London Business School. This was followed by an afternoon spent in Europe’s largest hack space to explore the role of advanced manufacturing and the opportunity to discuss their thoughts during a trip on the London Eye.

Business models for a new economy

Joss Bleriot from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation opened the session by presenting the main principles of circularity which are informing changing business models. Drawing on the different schools of thought sparked a lively conversation amongst fellows and mentors about the terminology currently in use surrounding the circular economy and why these ideas are gaining momentum now.


Ioannis Ioannou from the London Business School led a talk about the challenges a company may face in a circular transition. Participants were asked to define aspects of business models that would need to adapt in alignment with a circular economy. Each of these elements were then reframed to explore how we can transform these challenges into business opportunities.

Digital Manufacturing

Chris Wilkinson of the Manufacturing Institute led the next session with a detailed insight into Digital Manufacturing, explaining the progress already made, and providing a dynamic outlook on what will soon be possible for 3D and 4D printing. Topics such as how 3D printing might decentralize manufacturing and the potential implications at local and global scale were thrown into question.


The group travelled to the east end of London in the afternoon to Europe’s largest Hack Space. Hackspace is an open source community whose members can access advanced facilities and tools for use on their own unique projects. The group were joined by Kyle Wiens, CEO of iFixit, and member of the Foundation’s Circular Economy 100 programme. It was particularly interesting for the fellows and mentors to see a community-based, bottom-up approach to circularity in action and think about the implications for innovation in developing economies as well as advanced ones.

After the day’s activities had finished, fellows and mentors reflected on the day during a trip on the London Eye.


Insight of the day

“It’ll come down to IP law – if a family in Nairobi can download and print a table they will – they won’t buy one.”
- Kyle Wiens, CEO iFixit, speaking at the Hack Space

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