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Circular Wonderings

Hi, I’m Barry. I founded HappyPorch in 2015 and I’m excited about the Circular Economy.

I believe that we (me, you, HappyPorch and society in general) need to do more than react to climate change and loss of biodiversity and all the other issues caused by our waste. Rather, we need to find ways to solve those issues AND improve life on our planet. There is a chance that, with Circular Economy approaches, we can contribute to these regenerative solutions.

Circular Wonderings is an exploration of the role of digital, software and technology in the Circular Economy. Exploration is the key word here. I write regularly, reflecting on my current thoughts and research. Expect typos, incomplete thoughts, varied rambling topics and (hopefully) a journey towards clearer understanding and insight.

This is a long and difficult journey! But it is, I think, a road worth travelling.

To join me on this journey subscribe to receive daily (yes daily!) emails. I'd love to hear your thoughts or feedback, just subscribe and reply to any email.

Archive

Inverse Conway's law

Conway's law is an adage stating that organisations design software which mirror their own structure. [1] The point being that our human interactions affect, or even limit, the software that we create. One of the most clear examples of this is often the website. "Organisations often produce web sites with a content and structure which mirrors the internal concerns of the organi ...

Circular as Digital Transformation?

A reader very kindly responded to my question about Digital Transformation vs Circular Economy [1]. He said "...what we call Digital Transformation is actually a much broader transformation that is induced/forced/triggered by the technological/digital change ... the technology is the catalyst for a much broader organisational rethinking of process and work method". This fits wi ...

Circular Digitalisation?

Here's some confusing semantics for you: Digitisation "is the process of converting information into a digital format" [1]. Digital transformation "is the adoption of digital technology to transform services or businesses, through replacing non-digital or manual processes with digital processes or replacing older digital technology with newer digital technology" [2]. Digitalisa ...

Paradigm Shift (part 3)

This post is part of a short series attempting to understand Carol Sanford's [1] "Four Paradigm Framework", with the aim of applying it to the role of technology in the Circular Economy. There were two paradigm shifting moments for me when I first heard Carol talking through the 4 levels of her framework. The first was a clarification of the risks of being limited to either "Ar ...

Paradigm Shift (part 2)

This post is part of a short series attempting to understand Carol Sanford's [1] "Four Paradigm Framework", with the aim of applying it to the role of technology in the Circular Economy. Carol has identified four paradigms [2] in the framework. (Caveat: I am using my own words and my very incomplete understanding here. So, blame me for inaccuracies or inconsistencies first.) Va ...

Paradigm Shift (part 1)

We talk about the need for a change in paradigm both brought by and needed for a Circular Economy. What does that mean? I've been learning a little about Carol Sanford's work [1], starting with her "Four Paradigm Framework". I think there might be a lot to gain from applying this to (my approach to) the Circular Economy. To set the scene: What is a paradigm? The most relevant d ...

Code doesn't matter

Here is a scary thing: as software developers the code we write does not matter. The years of toil to master our craft, the pleasure we take in beautiful code and our pride in elegant solutions. These are all irrelevant. I mean, they are also vital. But on their own they are worse than useless. A plumber ensures I have hot and cold running water in my house. She knows, in incre ...

Look out!

There must be an opportunity for hilarity about circularity...   ...but I've gone round and round and can't find any funny angles at all. ...

Virtual Bridges

An industrial park in the small coastal city of Kalundborg in Denmark is one of the most commonly used examples of the Circular Economy. Specifically, it is an example of Industrial Ecology in action [1]. DigitaList have an excellent 2018 article [2] that starts with the Kalundborg example and walks through the benefits (the requirement) of the Circular Economy. It is an excell ...