Transparency, information and analysis for more joint action

The global problem of the environmental impact of plastic waste is extremely complex. There are several strands of action, which are dealt with by numerous players, science, politics, economy and civil society.

The fields of action can roughly be divided into:

  • Circular waste management and improved recycling
  • Innovations in material and product design
  • Waste Management
  • Elimination of disposable plastics
  • Education for Sustainable Development
  • Removal of plastic waste from the environment

Within each of these fields of action, the large number of projects hardly seems manageable. As hopeful as the high level of public attention and the diverse commitment to the topic may be, this diversity makes orientation and targeted joint action across the boundaries of organizations and sectors very difficult.

This is where POLYPROBLEM comes in play. With their initiative, the non-profit Röchling Foundation and the consulting firm Wider Sense want to facilitate and support the joint work of civil society organizations, sponsors, public institutions, and scientific institutions.

A first result was the study “POLYPROBLEM – Challenges, actors and perspectives” in 2019, followed by a stakeholder dialogue in Berlin with around 150 experts. The positive response and the great interest in a continuation have encouraged us to develop POLYPROBLEM into a permanent initiative.

All successful initiatives for social change have one thing in common: the collective assembly of different approaches and different players working together in a focused manner. That is why POLYPROBLEM sees itself as an open learning and networking platform that can be joined by like-minded committed players from different areas.

The POLYPROBLEM initiative consists of four modules with training, information and cooperation offers for companies, organizations, initiatives and people who want to get involved in solving environmental problems caused by plastic waste.

… is an interactive learning platform. In webinars, workshops and stakeholder dialogues practitioners, plastics experts, NGOs and researchers share their experiences and knowledge.

… is a series of short studies and discussion papers on relevant and current topics. The reports make challenges from the complex field of plastics and environment transparent. They provide information on the most important approaches, the main players and attempts to find solutions. The POLYPROBLEM reports are published every six months.

… is the future platform of the supporting institutions. This is where companies, networks, foundations and philanthropists can pool their resources, avoid parallel structures and move from isolated individual project funding to collective impact. By means of targeted scouting and pitches, we bring together the best innovations with the resources needed for scaling up.

Everyone talks about plastic, but hardly anyone knows it really. A series of excursions will give the participants an insight behind the scenes of production companies, application industries, recycling plants and research institutes – each combined with a critical and constructive dialogue.

Together we want to work towards creating a world without plastic waste. Our goal is to develop and combine measures that have maximum effect. We will have been successful when, in a few years’ time, we have managed to create a joint initiative of companies, foundations, science and politics to make the best innovations for a plastic waste-free environment marketable.