Ellen MacArthur’s Foundation launches new course in Bradford

MacArthur calls for ‘Redesign Revolution’ – Dame Ellen issues clarion call at British Science Festival

Dame Ellen MacArthur today called for an urgent ‘redesign revolution’ as she addressed the British Science Festival – Europe’s largest public science event.

Speaking to an audience featuring some of the UK’s leading science commentators, MacArthur warned that moving from a ‘take-make-dump’
economy to a ‘circular economy’ was vital.  In the circular economy she endorses, waste becomes food for another cycle or process rather than thrown away.

MacArthur’s comments came as her charitable Foundation launched a Post-Graduate Certificate (PGCert) in the circular economy.  It has been developed in partnership with the University of Bradford – the hosts of this year’s festival which last visited the city in 1900.

“A transition to the circular economy offers a framework for creativity and the context within which the debate about our future prosperity will increasingly take place,” she said.  “I am delighted to be announcing the launch of a new PGCert course in partnership with the University of Bradford.  It will give business and education leaders a unique opportunity to engage with some of the world’s leading circular economy thinkers and provide a framework to equip organisations for change.”

The Master’s level course has been designed for business leaders/managers involved in strategy, design, innovation and systems; educational leaders and practitioners; and public sector executive
staff and officers, notably procurement and performance management.
Cohort 1 has been oversubscribed and includes representatives from B&Q, Cisco, National Grid and Renault.  Other businesses already working towards a circular economy include Procter and Gamble, Phillips, Desso, Aveda, Steelcase, InterfaceFLOR, AGC Glass Europe and Van Gansewinkel Groep.

Course director Dr Peter Hopkinson said: “Our PGCert has been designed for busy professionals in full time work to develop understanding and test out ideas about the circular economy in ways that are practical and relevant. Flexible online collaborative delivery, work focussed assessments and problem based learning underpin the course ethos to maximise benefits to individuals and their employers.”

First held in 1831, the British Science Festival has been the stage for many iconic moments in history – such as the first use of the word ‘scientist’ in 1834 and the famous 1860 debate about Darwin’s controversial theory of evolution between Thomas Huxley and the Bishop of Oxford.  Some 50,000 visitors are expected at the talks, discussions and workshops.

MacArthur – who completed the Vendée Globe solo circumnavigation race and then broke the non-stop solo world record – spent five years engaging government, business, NGOs and the public sector before launching her Foundation in September last year. The Foundation’s goal is to inspire a generation to re-think, re-design and build a positive future.