Circular Economy Transition event & soft opening of Beaulieu Circulaire, the new home of Impact Hub Lausanne

“The ExperienCE”, the national event of our pioneer initiative Circular Economy Transition (CET) is a unique event bringing together entrepreneurs, civil society, and the public and private sectors to create new opportunities for Switzerland’s transition to a more sustainable future.

Join us on this day filled with thought-provoking workshops, inspiring panel discussions, impact stories, and the latest insights from entrepreneurs and visionary practitioners from around the world followed by a celebration over live music.

Cherry on top! Come also celebrate with us the Opening of Beaulieu Circulaire, the first innovation space dedicated to Circularity and Inclusion in Switzerland, and new home of Mentor Energy, Atelier Eveil & Impact Hub Lausanne 

And we want you to be part of it! 👉 bit.ly/TheExperienCE

What is Circular Economy?

Circular economy Transition (CET) is a model of production and consumption that moves away from the linear model of creating waste and pollution. The circular model is designed to keep existing materials and products as long as possible throughout the value chain. It involves consideration in the usage of materials, design, energy efficiency & energy renewability, durability, maintenance & repairability and social equity. CET reduces dependencies and risks in global supply chains, it promotes regional value creation leading to an economy that is more sustainable and resilient.

On Tuesday, July 19, 2022, the third TED Members Group Discussion of the year was held in Impact Hub Ticino, organized with the support of BancaStato. “Today’s climate, tomorrow’s food” this was the theme of the event, which created an active debate among participants in a relaxed and informal atmosphere.

The evening began with the screening of a TED Talk video, “Climate Change is becoming a problem you can taste” by Amanda Little, professor of journalism and science writing at Vanderbilt University and columnist for Bloomberg. After the video was shown, participants engaged in a constructive debate, expressing ideas and visions through open conversation.

“We are what we eat”: so began Feuerbach as early as 1850 to emphasize how an individual’s eating habits can tell us a great deal about his culture, his health and the society in which he lives. But are we always aware of the food we eat and the impact on our health and climate?

“Food before it reaches our tables must be grown, harvested, raised, transported, processed, packaged, distributed and cooked. The energy required to provide all these processes is equivalent to 30 percent of the energy available globally, and of that, the distribution phase consumes more than 70 percent,” says one of the participants. “To all this must then be added another very important fact, which is mainly a consequence of large-scale distribution: one third of the food produced is trashed during the different stages of the supply chain,” adds a young farmer. Not to mention the negative impact of the use of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides of conventional/industrial agriculture.

But do we really need all this food? What would happen if we bought less? And what product would we be willing to give up in the name of more conscious consumption?

“Let’s not forget the spiritual and cultural aspect related to food”-argues another participant-“Are we ready to face a cultural change as well?”

Alternatives promoted by technological innovation such as vertical gardens, lab-produced meat, and the use of artificial intelligence are just some of the viable alternatives. “Maybe it would be easier to stop eating meat and stop eating fish: we are not only killing the earth, but also the oceans,” continues, moved, another participant, who has just returned from a trip to the Caribbean where in 10 days she did not see a single fish.

Organic, biodynamic and regenerative agriculture promote a systems approach in which the farmer’s role is not only to produce food, but more importantly to regenerate the soil. “Regenerative, syntropic and agroforestry farming is proving to yield certainly healthier and more nutritious products that also contribute to CO2 absorption,” adds another participant. “Of course, there is the issue of water scarcity, the drought of these months has put a strain on the whole system,” he continues, “but fortunately there is listening and good collaboration with local authorities to identify new solutions and alternative water sources.”

These were some of the questions that emerged during last night’s conversation involving entrepreneurs, students, corporate, public, and nonprofit professionals. The conclusion was quite clear: The entire food system should be re-engineered.

But how? The challenge, it was said, is to create a glue between philosophies of thought by combining history, respect for natural rhythms with opportunities from innovation and food education.

The conversation was facilitated and fueled by Gabriele Bianchi, Winemaker and Owner Azienda Agricola Bianchi; Natalie Maspoli Taylor, Director Sea Shepherd Switzerland; Ludovica Donati, CEO of Blue Arbor Foundation, Agnese Zgraggen, Food Designer and owner of Officina del Gusto.

The event was organised thanks to the support of BancaStato, Here is the link to photo album (by our Hubber Egle Berruti Photographer) and keyword map.

What are TED Members Group Discussions?

TED Members Group Discussions, are recurring, informal events where participants watch a TED video together on the most current and pressing issues facing the community and discuss them openly, seeking solutions and confronting each other in an effort of collective intelligence. Impact Hub Ticino is a TED member and organizes four events a year touching on current and inspiring topics for the local community.

We are proud to announce that Impact Club, the incubator of Impact Hub Ticino that supports the development of impactful entrepreneurial and social innovation projects (for-profit and nonprofit) in the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland, is supported by Stiftung Mercator Schweiz, one of the most important Swiss foundations committed to building an open, supportive and ecologically sustainable society. Stiftung Mercator Switzerland joins Migros Pioneer Fund, the first partner of Impact Club.

In addition, we are almost ready to present you the projects that will participate in the first edition of Impact Club, 64 projects (58% women!) from the area participated in our open call in May: from Rossa to Castel san Pietro, from Val Mara to Val di Blenio!

Follow us on our social channels to find out the projects that will participate in the first edition of the incubator!

Yesterday, May 19, 2022 the second TED Members Group Discussion of the year, organized with the support of BancaStato, took place in Impact Hub Ticino. “Inclusion Revolution” this was the theme of the event, which created among the participants an active debate in a relaxed and informal atmosphere.

The evening began with the screening of a TED Talk video, “Inclusion Revolution by Daisy Auger-Domínguez, Diversity and Inclusion Strategist. After the video screening, participants engaged in a constructive discussion, expressing ideas and visions through open conversation.

Fear, courage, self-awareness, initiative: these were some of the key words that emerged that summed up the discussions well, flanked also by a need for solidarity and alliance to secure an inclusive corporate and social ecosystem.

It is from the analysis of the cultural and educational context that the conversation started: we have always been educated to do and not to be, men are men, women are women, and their respective masculine and feminine sides must be masked otherwise one is not “man” or “woman” enough. And therefore, until we free ourselves from conditioning, cognitive biases and welcome the multiplicity within us, we cannot see the diversity in others. Similarly, we often communicate by using “labels” and appellations that create division and contribute to feeding these cognitive biases: we label refugees and migrants as “non-EU”, we use the generic word “disabled” to describe about 1 billion people with different types of disabilities.” Words, which exclude instead of include.

True inclusion, on the other hand, is built through daily acts of solidarity and alliance between those who recognize that they enjoy privilege and those who are subject to exclusion, just as much through strategic plans, clear goals, measurable actions and iterative processes to learn from mistakes: only this transforms an ideal into concrete and lasting results.

In recent years, our economic and social system has evolved positively: we are now all more aware thanks to the many awareness campaigns and public measures, but still far from a truly inclusive and just system. Each of us can, must contribute to the improvement: the state, by putting in place more tools that allow all people to make their own path, and to take the first step toward cultural change; each of us must strive and nurture the will to study, to deepen the different. Many people do not reflect on their own condition, and that of each other, they simply wait for something to change, or they rage against the system.

These were some of the themes that emerged during the conversation involving entrepreneurs, students, and professionals from the corporate, public, and nonprofit worlds. The conversation was facilitated and fueled by Donatella Zappa, Director at Area Società Cooperativa; Gabrio Previtali, Group Leader and Project Leader, Labor Section, URC; Marialuisa Parodi, Co-Director and Co-Founder at Equi-Lab; Paolo Badano, Director at Genny Factory SA; and Tiziano Luccarelli, Sustainability Lead at Kickstart Innovation and Co-Founder Impact Hub Ticino.

The event was organised thanks to the support of BancaStato, whom we thank. Many thanks also to MoneyMag, Media Partner of the event.

Links to photo album and keyword map

What are TED Members Group Discussions?

TED Members Group Discussions, are recurring, informal events where participants watch a TED video together on the most current and pressing issues facing the community and discuss them openly, seeking solutions and confronting each other in an effort of collective intelligence. Impact Hub Ticino is a TED member and organizes four events a year touching on current and inspiring topics for the local community.

In the spirit of letting people know about the beautiful entrepreneurial realities on our territory, we periodically interview our hubbers. Today it’s the turn of Domani Food, and Julia Rahmani, Co-founder of the company tells us more about it.

Who is DomaniFood? julia rahmani
We are a Swiss chocolate and snack food production company with innovation lab based in Rancate. We focus on new food solutions that are good for our health and society by being organically produced, made with sustainable and fairly traded ingredients that are processed in a gentle way.

How did the idea of founding your company that focuses on responsible production come about? Why in Ticino? 

The founders have a 150+ years background in the food industry. The idea was born out of the realisation that it is not just crucial how food tastes, but also how it makes us feel. Hence, in order to be able to 100% control each ingredient and process that goes into making our products, we decided to build our own production. Our respect to Mediterranean food culture and food knowhow combined with Swiss excellence standards led us to choose Ticino as our base.

You recently acquired the historical Ticinese chocolate factory CimaNorma giving a fresh and innovative boost to the brand. Can you tell us about your projects?

Our aim with CimaNorma is to revive and reposition the brand by focusing on the development of chocolate products that both honour its legacy and achievements whilst being in line with new food trends including the use of 100% organic, additive free, single origin and sustainable ingredients. CimaNorma’s newest Sleeping Beauty Edition celebrates the brand entering a new, modern era with convenient and simplified yet impactful packaging designs. The range includes pralines and different sizes of bars, which are being introduced in luxury hospitality (with a focus on 5 star hotels). We supply, for instance, Swiss Diamond Hotel and Ticino Hotel Group with our praline boxes.

What does your company stand for and why did you choose this name? What do you mean with “gentle food processing” and what are the benefits?

We stand for combining the best practices of safe and high quality food production with new food trends. Our focus is to make products for the consumers of tomorrow (“domani” in italian). Hence, our company name expresses this mission. Gentle processing is a production method with the aim of nutritional preservation and nutrient retention. Treating food “gently”, means avoid using chemicals or excessive heat or pressure when making the final product, so as to protect the flavour and the benefits of the ingredients, which are often compromised when using traditional processing methods.

You combine innovation and responsible production and consumption. What are the challenges that a company like yours faces everyday? 

One of the main challenges we face is that some of the larger retailers are still slow to adapt to real consumer needs. The process of listing a new product is a time-consuming and expensive procedure that puts off many young companies with innovative and healthier food solutions. Good news is that more and more millennials are starting to enter these organisations or come up with their own food retail concepts such as our clients Felfel, Siradis or Foodist, that speed up and facilitate the food revolution.

What are the problems in the vegan and biological supply chain that you encounter today?

The main challenge we encounter is that origins and suppliers are limited when it comes to organic produce,  especially in Europe. One of our organic suppliers grows certain raw materials exclusively for us, which can create pressure if our output is lower or higher than expected. Another problem is the continued high price sensitivity, even in the premium and organic trade, despite a decrease in consumer price sensitivity. This makes maintaining high quality as a small producer challenging.

What are the goals you would like to achieve? And what’s your expected impact?

In the long run our goal is to become a global market leader in the new sustainable food space offering products that both taste good and are better for our health. We plan to go beyond snack foods within the coming year, and are currently working on expanding our operations beyond Europe.

Why did you choose Impact Hub Ticino? What is the added value here?

We chose to become part of Impact Hub Ticino to meet both like-minded people in the field as well as share our knowledge, challenges and learnings with others from the region, that may be interested in what we do.

Inclusion revolution: listening, valuing and welcoming diversity in the work environment… but not only.

The second TED Members Group Discussion of 2022 of Impact Hub Ticino will take place on May 19, 2022 at 18:00 at the headquarters in Via Antonio Ciseri 3 and will address the theme “Inclusion revolution: listening, valuing, welcoming diversity in the world of work… and beyond” starting from the video TED Talk Inclusion revolution by Daisy Auger-Domínguez, Diversity and Inclusion Strategist.

Daisy Auger-Domínguez invites us to think about why creating workplaces where everyone feels heard and valued is difficult, complex, and sometimes creates emotionally conflicting states of mind. According to Daisy, only when we all begin to act as allies with our work colleagues however different we see them, when we show solidarity and fight to ensure that every team member is recognized, heard and valued, only then will we achieve lasting and meaningful change, both at work and in our lives.

So what are the challenges to create more equitable, just and inclusive organizations? What role do companies themselves, training, and human resources play in this change? What are the challenges and what are the incentives? What’ the situation in Ticino?

Following the video screening, all participants are invited to actively contribute to the conversation by expressing ideas and visions in a collaborative way with the goal of bringing new awareness and points of view around the topic. The conversation will be facilitated by other on-site “conversation starters” who are experts on the topic. The event is being held with the support of BancaStato, whom we sincerely thank.

 

Registration

Places are limited. Registration is free at the following link. 

Program

18:00 – Doors opening
18:20 – Introduction and projection of the TED video
18:35 – Start of the conversation
8:00 p.m. – Aperitif and Networking

What are TED Members’ Group Discussions?

TED Members’ Group Discussions are recurring and informal events in which participants watch together a TED video on the most current and urgent topics for the community and discuss openly looking for solutions and confronting each other in an effort of collective intelligence. Impact Hub Ticino is a TED member and organizes four events a year, touching on current and inspiring topics for the local community.

 

About Daisy Auger-Domínguez

Daisy Auger-Domínguez has made it her mission to make workplaces more equitable, compassionate and inclusive. An executive in the world of human resources and workplace culture strategist, Daisy inspires and equips global organizations to think inclusively, lead with purpose, embrace courage, and shape the future of work. As Chief People Officer at VICE Media Group, Daisy shapes, builds and strengthens the culture of Vice’s teams; fosters professional growth, engagement and development; helps accelerate business performance; and supports an equitable and inclusive employee experience.

Today, Monday, April 11, Impact Hub Ticino launches Impact Club, the incubator for impact entrepreneurial projects promoted by a local network of investors and philanthropists.

Registration is open to participate in the Impact Club incubation program, the new Impact Hub Ticino program that aims to accompany impact and social innovation entrepreneurial projects (for-profit and non-profit) in an incubation process supported by a club of investors and philanthropists. The Migros Pioneer Fund supports Impact Club to enable pioneers in Italian-speaking Switzerland to implement their own local impact projects.

“In Ticino there are several entrepreneurial and social innovation projects with promising circular and sustainable solutions,” says Tommaso Tabet, co-creator of Impact Club, “but they often don’t have access to the right skills and funding to become businesses. In the startup world we often talk about unicorns referring to companies with the potential for exponential economic growth. Unicorns are fascinating, but they are mythological and fantastical animals. What we are looking for are zebras, real animals that represent sustainable businesses that aim to have a social and environmental impact as well as an adequate economic return. These types of companies have different needs than classic start-ups,” continues Tabet, “and to support these projects you need the right capital.”

And it is precisely by involving philanthropists and investors linked to the territory that Impact Club wants to create the conditions for projects to receive adequate support and become economically sustainable companies.

“In Ticino there are several investors and philanthropists – says Carlotta Zarattini, co-creator of Impact Club – and when we met them we perceived a strong link with the territory and the desire to support impact initiatives. However, due to both the lack of a network and the often too embryonic stage of projects, they struggle to find innovative entrepreneurs to invest in.”

“I chose to be part of this project,” says one of the Impact Club’s investors, “because in Ticino I observe an unexpressed entrepreneurial potential, especially among women. I believe that with the right measures this potential can turn into reality and contribute to a more sustainable, inclusive and collaborative Ticino.”

“Impact Club in Ticino creates local ecosystems that foster connections between investors and innovators. The Migros Pioneer Fund supports this pilot project in order to stimulate the emergence of innovative entrepreneurial projects in Switzerland’s smaller towns,” says Pablo Villars, of Migros Pioneer Fund in Zurich.

Participation and program

The incubation program lasts 5 months, is free of charge and is intended for early stage entrepreneurial projects (for-profit and non-profit) based in Italian-speaking Switzerland. Impact Club, in collaboration with 9 investors and philanthropists, will choose the projects to accompany in the incubation process. Particular attention will be given to the development of a business model that combines financial sustainability and impact, to peer-to-peer learning, to meetings with investors and philanthropists but also to the personal development and well-being of the teams. During the incubation process the teams will also have access to the Impact Hub community in Switzerland, to coworking spaces and to weekly and thematic events proposed by Impact Hub Ticino. At the end of the incubation path the projects will be ready to receive the necessary funding.

Registrations are open directly on the Impact Club website (www.impactclub.ch), where all necessary information is available. It will be possible to submit your project until May 6. During this period Impact Hub Ticino will organize two informative webinars of 30′, on April 20 at 11 am and April 26 at 5 pm.

More information

Impact Club is a program of Impact Hub Ticino, which aims to accompany entrepreneurial projects with impact and social innovation (for-profit and non-profit) in a path of incubation supported by a group of investors and philanthropists. Impact Hub Ticino is a worldwide network of people and organizations that facilitates the transition to a responsible economy. Through a coworking space, an active community, projects and events, Impact Hub Ticino welcomes people and organizations looking for tangible solutions to the most urgent and pressing challenges of our time. Thanks to the Impact Club, Impact Hub Ticino enriches the regional innovation system, fostering collaboration between investors and projects with a focus on impact.

Migros Pioneer Fund

The Migros Pioneer Fund seeks out and promotes ideas with potential for society. It makes possible innovative projects that break new ground and test future-oriented solutions. The results-based support approach combines financial support with coaching services. The Migros Pioneer Fund is part of the social commitment of the Migros Group and is implemented by Migros Group companies to the tune of around CHF 15 million per year.

Yesterday, March 24, 2022 was held in Impact Hub Ticino the first TED Circles of the year. “Companies in the changing society” was the theme of the event, which created an active debate among participants in a relaxed and informal atmosphere.

The evening started with the projection of a TED Talk video: “Transforming ownership to create a better economy” by Armin Steuernagel co-founder and managing partner of Purpose Foundation and Purpose Capital. After the screening of the video, participants engaged in a constructive debate, expressing ideas and visions, and nurturing a new awareness around the topic.

The central question of the discussion was, “Is it possible to build companies that are a force for good in society while maximizing their profits without creating negative externalities?” According to Steuernagel, “the answer lies in how the company is structured, and what kinds of incentives it offers its managers and staff.”

“Most companies claim to make the world a better place, and in some cases, you can objectively say that a company is doing something the world needs However, in most situations, it is not so easy to assess whether the company is actually having a net positive societal impact despite creating new jobs and the impact of the products being neutral.” argues Sara Fedele, of Impact Hub Ticino.

“Genuine willingness to be mission-driven is often not enough,” continues Tiziano Luccarelli, of Impact Hub Ticino, moderator of the evening. “What seems like a business model that generates a purely positive impact can have surprising negative side effects. As the company gets bigger, it may need to venture into business areas that are no longer aligned with its original mission to sustain growth.”

If a company is structured in a traditional way, it still needs to listen to the demands of its shareholders, and if shareholders are primarily interested in maximizing their profits, the company’s management has an incentive to put its social mission on the back burner and instead focus solely on profits and growth. “And that’s why very often all the wonderful solutions that reinforce the mission but are at odds with the growth objective, with the goals (KPIs) to be achieved, with the traditional results measurement tools, we’ll never see them happen.” adds one of the event participants.

One of the emerging business models is steward-ownership, a decentralized ownership model that employs the tools of for-profit businesses while preserving the core purpose of creating products and services that deliver social value, and is a viable alternative to shareholder-based ownership.

The new models, which keep the responsibility of the company in the hands of those who know and work in it rather than of relocated shareholders, require greater awareness not only on the part of the founders, but also of the employees themselves: in some cases, it is the latter who are called upon as active participants in the decision-making process. In some cases, employees are called upon to play an active role in the decision-making process, which presupposes a cultural transformation in the way the relationship between owner and employee has been understood up to now.

“Transparency”, “responsibility”, “mission” are just a few of the key words recalled by participants during the event. Enthusiasm, but also doubts about how to transform traditional business models to activate more current ones that are attentive to staff and the environment, without neglecting profit.

These were some of the themes touched upon during the evening, which involved entrepreneurs, students, banking and legal professionals in a lively debate. The conversation was facilitated and fueled by on-site “conversation starters” who are experts on the subject: Leonardo Conte, Co-Founder of Rethinking Economics Switzerland; Marco Ciamei, Lawyer specialized among others in Corporate, Tax and Labor Law, both in Italy and Switzerland; Roberto Giannetti, Economic Journalist of Corriere del Ticino; Elias Minotti, Farmer and Co-Founder of Cerere Bistrot and Retail; Manuela Pagani Larghi, Co-Founder Impact Hub Ticino and ULab Hub Ticino; Tiziano Luccarelli, Co-Founder of Impact Hub Ticino and Circular Economy Lead, Kickstart.

The event was held with the support of Banca Stato, which we sincerely thank.

Here some photos of the event
Here the keywords map

What are TED Circles?
TED Circles, soon to be renamed TED Members Group discussion, of which Impact Hub Ticino is a member, are recurring events during which a small group of people meet to watch a TED video and discuss its contents. The idea is to generate dialogue and discussion on valuable topics. The theme of each event is chosen by Impact Hub Ticino following the suggestions of TED and current trends. The discussion is unique and all are virtually connected through the TED platform.

On April 4 the Cantonal Startup Day will be held from 9:00 to 16:00 at the LAC, Lugano Arte e Cultura. The event is organized by the Department of Economy and Finance and Fondazione Agire, and in collaboration with Impact Hub Ticino and USI Startup Center and with the support of BancaStato.

Innovation, creativity, dynamism, and an outlook on the world and the future: these are some of the characteristics of startups, young companies that represent a great opportunity for development in the Ticino economy. A type of entrepreneurship that has special needs, including the search for investments to be able to launch their products or services on the international market.

The Cantonal Startup Day aims to strengthen the networking between Ticino’s startups and potential investors. The latter will have the opportunity to approach the world of startups thanks to several moments of deepening. The opportunities for meeting and exchange will also be facilitated in the exhibition area where about twenty startups will be present with their stands.

Impact Hub Ticino, will participate with a round table on the theme “Investing in impact companies: preserving the mission by ensuring adequate returns” moderated by Angelica Morrone, Asset manager, Angel Investor and member of Impact Hub Ticino.

Speakers will be:

Participation to the event is free of charge, places are limited.
Online registration until March 25, 2022: http://www.ti.ch/giornata-startup

How to develop creative and collaborative educational scenarios through digital technology?

On March 30, 2022, in an interactive and stimulating environment at Impact Hub Ticino in Lugano, come and discover inspiring examples of digital innovation and learn how to integrate innovation in schools through creative and collaborative pedagogical scenarios.

In recent years, many digital innovation projects have been developed in primary and secondary schools in Switzerland.

What are the best practices and key aspects adopted in these schools? The Educreators I Shapers of the Future initiative has identified them and will share them with you through inspiring workshops.

PROGRAM

We look forward to meeting you at the first Educreators Xchange in Ticino in 2022!
Registration at: https://educreators.ch/

Partners: SUPSI DFA, Educreators Foundation, Gebert Rüf Stiftung, Impact Hub Ticino, Roteco.