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Circular Campus Programme 2023

An opportunity for young and aspiring innovators to collaborate and create circular solutions for the region's most pressing waste challenges.

Since 2021, Circular Cities Asia has partnered with universities to offer applied learning opportunities for students and alumni, focused on the intersection between circularity and innovation.
Through the Circular Campus Programme we’re building an innovation movement to redesign linear economic models and encourage young innovators to develop sustainable, circular solutions that address environmental waste issues and help accelerate the transition to a circular economy. 
The programme consists of a learning framework that uses a life cycle approach to help students understand waste challenges holistically and innovate solutions across the whole life cycle.
After completing the learning sessions, participants submit their circular solutions and shortlisted teams will have the opportunity to pitch their business ideas for a chance to win monetary prizes and business development opportunities.
Image by Jasmin Sessler

Innovation Challenge

How can we use circular economy innovation to accelerate the achievement of Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) goals, specifically with plastic packaging?

This programme will inspire students to innovate creative solutions for the circular economy of plastics.


The possibilities include:

  • Reducing or preventing the waste

  • New materials and alternatives to plastic

  • Recycling and reuse initiatives

  • Upcycling and creating higher value products


Students and alumni of the participating universities will have the opportunity to analyse the waste life cycle of plastic packaging and have the autonomy to tackle the problem they want to solve within this challenge area.

The Innovation Journey


Webinar: Introduction to Circular Economy Innovation and EPR

Tuesday April 11, 4:00-5:30pm PHT (GMT +8)

This webinar provides participants with an introduction to the circular economy and outlines why innovation is a key component to help accelerate the transition to a circular economy. You'll also learn about Extended Producer Responsbility (EPR), as it relates to the innovation challenge, and hear about some opportunities for the circular economy of plastics


  • Roleen Sevillena (Programme Manager, Circular Cities Asia)

  • Angelina Schreiner (Advisor for Sustainable Solid Waste Management and Circular Economy at GIZ GmbH)


Circular Innovation Workshop 1:

Problem Phase

Thursday April 13, 4:00-5:30pm PHT (GMT +8)

This workshop focuses on investigating the specific waste challenges that exist in your local context. You’ll dig deeper to understand the challenge using a lean and life cycle approach and get some insights into what problem research and validation looks like in action.


  • Roleen Sevillena (Programme Manager, Circular Cities Asia)

  • Czarina Constantino-Panopio (Program Manager for No Plastics in Nature Initiative, WWF-Philippines)


Circular Innovation Workshop 2:

Ideation Phase

Thursday April 27, 4:00-5:30pm PHT (GMT +8)

This workshop focuses on the ‘what if’ or ‘what could be the future’. You’ll take all of the inspiration and knowledge you gained from the problem phase, and come up with a circular business idea that could help solve the waste challenge identified. We’ll share some circular design strategies and discuss circular business models.


  • Roleen Sevillena (Programme Manager, Circular Cities Asia)

  • Suzanna Pomeroy (Co-Founder and Director, Circular Cities Asia)


Webinar: Industry Perspectives on Circular Economy Innovation

Thursday May 4, 4:00-5:00pm PHT (GMT +8)

In this webinar you'll gain insights from circular economy practitioners on the importance of innovation, entrepreneurship and collaboration for the transition towards a circular economy. The speakers will share their experiences working across different sectors and talk about some opportunities for young people in this circular economy innovation space.


  • Arsh Raina (Circular Economy Programme Manager, The African Leadership University)

  • Nicole Bendsen (Secretariat, Prevent Waste Alliance)

  • Adam McConnochie (Co-Founder & Director, Solid)

  • Dr. Kasia Weina (Founding Partner & Director, Evergreen Labs)


Idea Submission

Deadline to submit: May 9, 11:59pm PHT (GMT +8)

After participants complete the sessions and work through the circular innovation toolkit, they’ll submit their business ideas. Shortlisted teams will get access to our boot camp and pitch their idea during the competition finals event.


Innovation Boot Camp

May 17 - June 5 for competition finalists

This interactive boot camp helps teams to refine their business models and pitch decks before the competition finals event. Participants will have access to pre-recorded lectures, industry recognised resources and live feedback sessions with circular economy practitioners.


Pitch Competition

Wednesday June 7, 4-6:30pm PHT (GMT +8)

The teams shortlisted for the finals will pitch their circular business ideas and have a live question and answer session with the jury. By the end of the virtual event the winners of the prizes will be announced!



July-October for select teams


This co-incubation, in partnership with participating universities, gives winning teams the opportunity to test and develop their circular business ideas further. Teams will have access to incubation facilities on their campus and academic guidance whilst also accessing mentoring and coaching support from Circular Cities Asia and other industry experts.


The top 3 teams will be invited to take part in an incubation opportunity, which includes mentoring and coaching to prototype their circular innovation and support with business development. Each incubation team will receive $2500 USD of seed funding.

Select teams will also be given small grants from CCAsia to support the development of their circular business ideas.

All Hands In


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May 9


To enter the competition, student teams must complete the competition submission form by this date.

April 9


Students and recent alumni of the participating universities (aged 18+) must submit the programme registration form by this date.

April 11 - May 5


Registered participants will receive invitations to attend our circular innovation workshops and webinars, and gain access to programme materials.

May 17 - June 5


The shortlisted teams will receive support in crafting their pitch for the competition finals event.

February - Early April


Participating universities promote the programme on campus to students and alumni.

May 10 - 15


Participating universities and the Circular Cities Asia team will review the submissions and shortlist the teams that will pitch at the competition finals event.

May 16


We will announce the shortlisted teams and email them with next steps to prepare for the competition finals event.

June 7


The finalists pitch their circular ideas to the jury and by the end of the virtual event the winners will be announced!

University Building

Participating Universities

Bataan Peninsula State University, Philippines
Ateneo de Naga University, Philippines

JK Lakshmipat University, India

Universitas Diponegoro, Indonesia

Vietnamese-German University, Vietnam

Monash University, Malaysia

Meet the Speakers

Angelina Schreiner

Angelina Schreiner is advisor on circular economy in the Global Programme Go Circular at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. Go Circular hosts the Secretariat of the PREVENT Waste Alliance, a multi-stakeholder platform for exchange and international cooperation for circular economy. Angelina supports PREVENT working groups with a focus on Extended Producer Responsibility for packaging and framework conditions. She has a background in international relations and public management. Before joining GIZ GmbH, Angelina worked for EU Offices in Brussels, as well as for a medium-sized town as coordinator for international affairs.

Suzanna Pomeroy
Circular Cities Asia

Suzanna is the Co-Founder and Director of Circular Cities Asia. She has an MA in Philanthropic Studies and is a Global Fellow of the Moving Worlds Institute. Suzanna has a strong background in capacity building, impact evaluation and cross-sector collaboration.

Roleen Sevillena
Circular Cities Asia

Roleen's work is currently focused on learning experience design. As the Programme Manager at Circular Cities Asia, she leads the orgranisation's flagship initiative, the Circular Campus Programme, which bridges theory and practice and encourages participants to take action on waste challenges in a way that creates positive ecological, social and economic outcomes. Roleen's past experiences as an environmental educator have been within the tourism industry, public sector and with non-profit organisations.

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Czarina Constantino-Panopio
WWF- Philippines

As the Program Manager for the No Plastics in Nature initiative, Czarina oversees all initiatives on stopping plastic waste leakage in nature including Plastic Smart Cities, Plastic Action, Extended Producer Responsibility, support for the global treaty on marine pollution, and Ayoko Ng Plastik movement. This is to ensure that they are aligned in the No Plastics in Nature initiative of the WWF network, reflective of what the Philippines needs, and sustained in terms of funding and partnership. She is also the Project Manager for 'Clean Ports, Clean Oceans: Improving Port Waste Management in the Philippines'.


Arsh Raina‘s mission at the African Leadership University is to help young leaders use the circular economy, and similar concepts, as tools to solve problems in their local communities. His team created the first ever circular economy course contextualized to Africa and trained university students to establish projects and businesses that use the principles of the circular economy as part of their business model. Arsh believes in the power of youth leadership, and experiences in his adult life have consistently revolved around empowering the youth.

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Adam McConnochie

Adam McConnochie (Ngāti Kahungunu ki te Wairoa) is the co-founder and director of oral care business, Solid. Adam’s mission is to stop the 16 million toothpaste tubes that go to the landfill in Aotearoa every year and to demonstrate the role that businesses can play in driving climate action. Solid is recognised in Aotearoa for its circular economy approach and is certified Carbon Positive. Previous to this role, Adam was a director and senior leader at Asia New Zealand Foundation Te Whītau Tūhono. In this role, Adam worked with many of Southeast Asia’s and New Zealand’s best entrepreneurs and business leaders and built a network across the region. Adam is a Obama Foundation Asia Pacific leader and a board member at charity, Just Peoples.

Dr. Kasia Weina
Evergreen Labs

Dr. Kasia Weina is a Founding Partner and Director of Evergreen Labs, a social and environmental venture builder based in Da Nang, Vietnam, focusing on creating innovative solutions to help solve current environmental and social issues. As the organization’s Director, she oversees business operations and all idea validation, innovation, and technology while simultaneously applying a scientific approach to sustainable business development. Along with her extensive research background and educational experiences across the world, she also has a substantial background in startups and social entrepreneurship in Asia, offering her diverse perspectives on strategic impact business and creative innovation.

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Nicole Bendsen
PREVENT Waste Alliance

Nicole Bendsen is a Geographer and has over 10 years of working experience in development cooperation for GIZ. During her career she has focused on environmental topics and multi-stakeholder dialogue processes. Nicole has been based in Latin America as well as South East Asia and only returned to Germany in 2019. Since then she has been setting up and coordinating the PREVENT Waste Alliance Secretariat - an international platform for exchange, partnership building and developing and piloting scalable circular solutions launched by the German government.


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Programme Designers:

Suzanna Pomeroy, Director

Roleen Sevillena, Programme Manager

University Partners

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In offering this programme, we aim to build long term relationships between universities, innovators and industry experts on this shared journey towards circularity and sustainability.

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