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Circular Economy & Waste Reduction

Write-up of the live eco-design talk held on 19 Oct 2022 at #DesignPopUp Dublin

On our return to Dublin, #DesignPopUp gathered an expert panel at the Smock Alley Theatre in the latest instalment of our Sustainability Talks. We invited a cross-section of voices to talk about the circular economy within design, from tackling waste and going net-positive to ways of futureproofing buildings.

The Panel

[Read their bios here]

Hani Hatami Sustainability Ambassador,


Anthony Gray

Co-Founder & Product Specialist,

ANN Future Workplaces

Ailish Walker Associate, Henry J Lyons Architects

Collette Burns Architectural Project Leader, Technological University Dublin

An environmental urgency

For the suppliers on our panel, their focus was not limited to their impact on the planet but on providing a climate-positive solution.

Hani Hatami, whose work at Humanscale involves educating clients on the importance of sustainability, opened the discussion with startling facts that distilled our environmental challenges. She pointed out the three most significant issues: global warming, "40% which is carbon created"; material transparency, "there's not enough clarification on what materials are used in products"; and ocean plastic, which comes with the sobering prediction that "by 2050 there will be more plastic in our waters than fish".

Hatami observed that there was not enough commitment from the industry: "Companies want to be sustainable but then realise it's going to cost them time and money. So everyone's happy to talk about what they've done but not what they're doing now."

Humanscale's net-positive overview

Making a positive impact

The team at Humanscale, which opened a new UK showroom in Manchester this year, asked themselves:

"What if we can have a positive impact? How can we be different?"

Setting the bar high, they made a goal to be net-positive – meaning that any time a piece of Humanscale furniture is made, the planet is measurably better off (the company offers 26 products that are certified climate, energy and water positive).