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Circular Economy MBA student wins sustainability award for company


An MBA student at the University of Bradford School of Management has helped his company win an industry award.

Tom Harper, who is on the Bradford Innovation, Enterprise and the Circular Economy MBA, led Unusual Industries Ltd to scoop Highly Commended status in the Enterprise category of The Circulars 2016.

The award recognised Tom’s work over the last two years in implementing a circular economic model within the business, which offers solutions to the challenges of suspending, elevating or moving equipment, scenery or people.

An initiative of the World Economic Forum of Young Global Leaders, the judging panel is made up of Danish MP Ida Auken, director of economics at the CBI Rain Newton-Smith and managing director, Global Accenture Strategy – Sustainability Services Peter Lacy.

Commenting on Tom's work, the panel said: “The judging panel were extremely impressed by the entry, in particular the details around how you are helping embed new industries within the closed loop arena.”

Tom, pictured right, said: “This award demonstrates the value of the Bradford School of Management Circular Economy MBA - something which has been of benefit to my company!”

He added: “We have focused on implementing key circularity loops within our business. Through re-manufacturing and applying RFID technology we have extended the value of all our equipment, ensuring it loops for longer, capturing greater embodied energy as well as using ICT software to enable better tracking and servicing of all equipment.

“We have a made to be made again product base for component parts on all theatre/museum installations, cascading resources for refurbishment or recycling. We design for disassembly with reuse of all passable component parts within our ecoline products base, therefore building further capacity at the end of life stage.”

As well as renewing their manufactured goods, Unusual Ltd also has a strong focus on using renewable energy.

“We are now 55 per cent energised on site by solar PV, therefore ensuring our commitment to designing a value system which generates and uses renewable energy,” said Tom.

“We stream all resources effectively ensuring zero waste to landfill with our resource management partner Veolia.

“We ensure all unused metal is cascaded into other uses, via re-manufacturing and product takeback methods. We have a robust toxicity analysis being implemented at the procurement stage with our key suppliers, ensuring cleaner materials that can be circulated for longer within a technical environment.”

Unusual Industries are key co-creators and collaborators with the Sustainability in Production Alliance.

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