Promoting Circularity and Innovation in the Furniture Sector
From 20 to 23 March, Wittenborg faculty members Fahad Shakeel and Fjorentina Muco travelled to Ljubljana, Slovenia, to participate in the INFURI project Learning, Teaching and Training Activity (LTTA). Wittenborg is the project coordinator of the Erasmus+ funded project INFURI, which focuses on circular innovation in the furniture industry, together with eight other project partners from nine different countries across Europe.
A group of learners, trainers and teachers from the partner organisations interested in sustainability in the furniture industry came together at the STEP Institute, one of the Slovenian project partners and hosts of the LTTA, to participate in this three-day peer learning and training event.
The presentations and workshops kicked off on Tuesday, when some of the project results were presented and tested in a workshop, including the 2-part Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) and the Book of Lectures created by the project consortium. A circular economy business model and experiential workshop took place in the afternoon.
Wittenborgers Fahad Shakeel and Fjorentina Muco jointly led an interactive workshop with various exercises for the participants. The workshop combined their respective expertise in ethical and sustainable leadership, international and diverse communication and the cultural dimensions of sustainability.
On Wednesday, participants visited project partner Mizarstvo Ornik, a Slovenian company specialising in design, production and installation of sustainable wood products and components. This study visit provided the participants with a “learning through practice” opportunity.
A teamwork business model prototyping workshop took place on Thursday, as well as a further presentation and workshop on two other project results: the creation of a multi-actor circular network and a set of circular procurement guidelines for office furniture.
All the project partners including Aydan Ismayilova and Selina White on behalf of Wittenborg Research Centre, came together on Friday for the transnational project meeting. Partners discussed the progression and coordination of the project and the dissemination of the project results ahead of the project completion date at the end of May.
All participants, including Wittenborg members, said they learned a lot about circularity principles and transnational group collaboration. Both Shakeel and Muco returned to Wittenborg to incorporate what they have learned and experienced into their own teaching at Wittenborg. Muco commented that what she liked most above the event was that “all participants were enthusiastic and committed to a more sustainable future’’.
by Selina White