circular economy

How might we create circular systems for a regenerative future?

Why Circular Economy Matters

It’s time to end the outdated production model of take, make, and dispose.

To ensure the health of our people and planet, we need to build circular systems that reduce waste and add value across the entire life cycle of the products we produce and consume. But circular systems can't exist unless the diverse stakeholders who touch that life cycle—from engineers to educators to waste managers—can share ideas and work together.

Collaborative design brings these key stakeholders together, driving new material, business, and distribution model innovations that can help us build a more regenerative future.

OpenIDEO works to unlock the creative potential of people worldwide, enabling diverse stakeholders to come together and scale impactful circular products and services.


Of Funding Awarded to Circular Innovators


Circular Ideas Generated On OpenIDEO


Circular Events Held Worldwide


Mentors Supporting
Circular Innovators

Circular Design Challenges

These open innovation initiatives have accelerated thousands of ideas to create and scale circular systems worldwide.

Food System Vision Prize

Envisioning regenerative and nourishing food futures for 2050.

NextGen Cup Challenge

How might we design the next generation fiber cup to be recoverable on a global scale, while maintaining the performance standards we know and trust?

top ideas
Design With Grind Challenge

How might we create a waste-free circular future by designing everyday products using Nike Grind materials?

top ideas
Food Waste Challenge

How might we dramatically reduce waste by transforming our relationship with food?

top ideas
Circular Design Challenge

How might we get products to people without generating plastic waste?

top ideas

Meet Our Partners

We work with public and private sector partners committed to circular economy, including:

Spotlight: The NextGen Cup

How might we design the next generation fiber cup to be recoverable on a global scale, while maintaining the performance standards we know and trust?

Circular News and Views

Check out a few snapshots of our circular work over the years.

More Circular Resources from IDEO

The Circular Design Guide

This Guide, a collaboration between the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and IDEO, helps innovators build more effective, creative solutions for the circular economy. Learn more here.

IDEO’s Circular Design Portfolio

IDEO explores the big question: how might we design for thriving, living systems? Find case studies, articles, and perspectives on designing for circularity. Learn more here.

How Might We Create Impact Together?

If you're interested in shaping the future, let's talk.

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