Nominated 2022

2harvest – OPV greenhouse foil

Hélène Fontaine | Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design Halle

With rising electricity consumption and an ongoing shift to renewable energy, we are likely to see increased competition for land utilisation in the near future. In fruit and vegetable cultivation, large-scale use of foil tunnels is being explored with the aim of protecting plants and extending the harvest period. 2harvest integrates organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells in this durable and flexible PET greenhouse film, enabling the dual use of agricultural land. The OPV film also allows the greenhouses to function more efficiently through the production of their own energy for heating. It is weatherproof and individual sections of film can be replaced in the event of a defect.


Maren Klamser | Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

The construction industry is one of the most resource-intensive sectors of all. Alongside high levels of resource extraction and the issue of scarcity, there are also challenges with regard to disposal. 5 TONS is a recyclable mineral solid made using brick dust from broken masonry as well as recycled aggregate from mineral construction waste. As such, 5 TONS represents an alleviation in the use of primary raw materials and for landfills. A dry stacking system for masonry blocks has been developed on the basis of the material, and tanks to the shape of the brick, it is possible to do entirely without mortar. Cut markings and defined breaking points permit a flexible configuration of brickwork.

Ariadne Pathfinder

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

Germany's goal of becoming climate-neutral by 2045 will necessitate rapid and far-reaching changes in energy policy. The Ariadne Pathfinder shows how this can be achieved. Interactive storytelling introduces users to the basic issues of CO2 emissions and energy supply. Animated graphics illustrate the implications of different technological approaches to the overall energy system as well as to individual sectors of transport, industry and buildings. The application is based on more than 16,000 data sets created by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research for calculation models and the development of future scenarios.

AYNO Luminaire Range

Midgard Licht GmbH

The central feature of the AYNO range of luminaires is a fibreglass rod with an inherent tension that results in a luminaire that is entirely without joints. The light can be directed in the desired direction by moving the two adjustment rings on the base and head. Plug-in connections allow the LED and transformer to be replaced, making AYNO one of the first LED luminaires that can be repaired by customers without tools. Already manufactured from recycled materials, it can be easily separated into three recyclable primary materials. The incorporation of semi-finished products avoids transport routes, while standardised materials can be locally sourced.

Bait protection box ToxProtect 1402

ball–b GmbH & Co KG

To date, highly toxic baits for rat control in sewers are often hung unprotected from their local surroundings. Even in sewage treatment plants, these toxins only go on to degrade to a small extent. With the ToxProtect bait protection box, the baits no longer come into contact with water, even during floods. This saves up to 98% of the toxic baits, equivalent to several hundreds of tonnes in Germany, and the hazardous substances no longer accumulate in the environment. A cloud-based web service enables efficient monitoring of rat activity and does away with the need for thousands of control visits by car. The boxes are produced locally and can be reused.

best wood CLT BOX - CEILING FS

best wood SCHNEIDER® GmbH

The best wood CLT BOX - CEILING FS is a tested and certified ceiling solution for multi-storey timber construction. The formaldehyde- and solvent-free glued hollow box form saves up to 38% of materials. The integrated insulation provides improved impact noise insulation in the low-frequency range. High static load-bearing capacity combined with comparatively low weight enables large spans in ecological timber construction. Thanks to the separability of the materials, the hollow box element, which is produced in southern Germany, can be deconstructed and the individual components of both wood and wood fibre insulation can be reused

Bio–(Floral) Foam

Irene Purasachit | Aalto University

Bio-(Floral) Foam is a lightweight, foam-like material that can absorb and retain water without immediately dissolving. Once wet, the material is soft enough for flower stems to be pushed in, and helps keep flowers fresh. Bio-(Floral) Foam is made from 100% cellulose obtained from floral waste from the cut flower industry. The material is an environmentally sound alternative to the commonly used floral foam made using oil-based phenol formaldehyde, and thus offers a recyclable solution in the area of floristry.


Daniel Silva Friedrich (studio KUSIKUY) & Alexander Ebert | Hochschule der Bildenden Künste Saar

In the experimental product series Blattwerk, the existing but unused raw material of urban foliage is processed into a material that has the potential to replace and/or complement conventional wood panel materials. The advantages lie in lower energy consumption during production and in the reduced impact of deforestation. Thanks to the use of plastic-free glues, the material can be completely degraded and returned to the biological cycle. The colour, shape and structure differ depending on the type of leaf.

BUGGI 52 Residential and Commercial Building

Holzbau Bruno Kaiser GmbH

Construction of the eight-story wooden building BUGGI 52 was completed in Freiburg at the end of 2020. It meets the highest environmental and ecological standards and is the first FSC-certified building in Germany. From the first floor upwards, it is constructed entirely of wood. The elevator shaft and staircase are also made of wood, meaning that there is no concrete core – unique to date for this class of building. Deconstructability and recyclability were taken into account in the design. Alongside the thirty residential units, there is also space for a supermarket, a bakery and a kindergarten.

Chiengora® – Wool from dog fiber

YarnSustain Schönrock Uhl GmbH

Every year, around 8,000 tonnes of biodegradable pet hair is accumulated throughout Europe in the course of pet grooming. YarnSustain has developed the first industrial process for producing yarn from pet fibres. The result resembles cashmere, only without the need for animal herding. Under the name of Chiengora®, cushions and knitted products are made from the combed-out undercoat of dogs. The production saves dye, water and energy, as Chiengora® is processed undyed. The dog fibres are collected and donated from private households, dog salons and breeders with the help of a crowdsourcing network.

Circular Sweater Project

Hannah Schorch

The Circular Sweater Project is characterised by holistic sustainability in the production, distribution and upcycling of its sweaters. The central and new features are two codes that are integrated into the fabric. Thanks to an RFID code, each sweater can be identified and returned for repair or new yarn production. The QR code is used to track the sweater's life to date, from the production of the fair-trade organic cotton to its various stops in retail contexts or at various businesses, to people who have worn it and left personal messages for subsequent generations of users.



HIIVE provides honeybees with a near-natural, species-appropriate home. Unlike conventional hives, which are primarily designed for maximum honey extraction, HIIVE also addresses the needs of the animals. The design replicates the microclimate of a tree cavity, the bees' natural habitat. With its special characteristics, it has a positive effect on the health of the bees. HIIVE is made exclusively from a mix of recycled and natural materials, with a modular design that ensures easy reparability.


Marius C. Merkel | Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design

The project “Licht_Verschmutzt” brings the debate about light pollution and energy waste into public space. Various installations modify "bad" light sources into media that criticize their own emission. Thus, recipients are confronted with and sensitized to the problem directly at the site of pollution. For the installations, leftover materials such as broken lenses or cuttings from cardboard boxes are upcycled and turned into small projectors and stencils. After the action period, all installations are removed, separated and recycled according to the principle "zerotrace".

LightPRO Shell

BioMat Team at ITKE Institute, University of Stuttgart under the direction of Jun.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. M.Eng. Hanaa Dahy | Project management: Evgenia Spyridonos

LightPRO Shell is an actively bendable structure made of biocomposite profiles. These are comprised of natural flax fibres combined with a bio-resin. The potential lies in its use as a load-bearing element in a variety of structural systems. The possibilities of this newly developed bamboo-like material are demonstrated in the real world in the form of a ten meter long canopy. The profiles can be recycled or transferred to other material streams.


Tim Schütze | Berlin University of the Arts

monoplan offers a new concept for refilling stations for liquid detergents and cleaning agents. Unlike conventional canisters, the large bag empties without air or residues. During refilling, monoplan does away with the need for internal cleaning and enables a minimum return volume, which in turn increases transport efficiency and reduces emissions. The filler guarantees drip-free removal and the means of hanging saves space on the sales floor. Thanks to the mono-material, the bags and filler can be materially recycled at the end of the life cycle as well as reused as recyclate in the production of new bags.

New Sources

Matthias Gschwendtner | Berlin University of the Arts

The New Sources research project is exploring new possibilities in the direct utilisation of residual materials as alternative raw materials. Branches, which are usually waste material from the wood industry, have been little utilised to date due to their complex geometry. By linking 3D scanning, computational design and robot-based manufacturing, a scalable process is created that enables the use of this previously problematic material. The Computational Log Chair is a first use case.


Sascha Greilinger | Coburg University

The amount of renewable energy in the power grid is hugely dependent on the weather and the time of day. The app PeakPick is a seasonal calendar for green electricity that helps to adjust consumption to the output of wind and solar plants. This is already practiced in industry in the form of so-called “load shifting”. PeakPick opens up this potential for private households and facilitates entry into flexible electricity consumption. By shifting the activation of devices to a period with a high share of renewable power generation, it is possible for everyone to make a valuable contribution to the energy transition.

PP Mono Orthoses and Splints

Farid Taher | Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design Halle

For reasons of hygiene and safety, the field of medicine uses vast quantities of disposable products. The costs of disposal are correspondingly high. The robust PP Mono wrist orthoses and finger splints demonstrate how high-quality medical products made using reusable, recyclable and recycled components are indeed possible. The use of a single polymer facilitates single-variety waste collection and recycling into solid and returnable solutions. In this way, medical products that have previously been used only once and for a short time can be fed into a material cycle by means of reprocessing.

re:wet – peat:lab

Milan Bergheim | weißensee academy of art berlin

97% of Germany’s peatlands have been drained, mostly for agricultural use. The resulting oxidation processes of the peatlands contribute to 5% of Germany’s total CO2 emissions. The process of rewetting puts a stop to these emissions. re:wet aids in the coordination of this activity and simplifies the necessary surveying. Using peat:lab, farmers are able to determine terrain heights, water levels, peat thickness and vegetation composition. All of the data is collected in a digital twin. This serves as the basis for the planning, tendering and monitoring of rewetting measures, as well as the modelling, certifying and trading of greenhouse gas emissions and distribution of biomass.


RS Recommerce Technologies GmbH

With its recommerce platform, reverse.supply offers an efficient solution for fashion retailers to set up or expand their own second-hand store and to deal with returns, overhangs or B-grade goods in a sustainable and economically sensible manner. reverse.supply takes over the value creation of the second-hand goods, encompassing collection, processing, placement in the web store, and shipping. Through the direct integration into the respective online shop of the retailer, the offer is also accessible to consumers.


Studio Ineke Hans for Circuform B. V.

REX is a remake of an award-winning design by Ineke Hans from 2011. The stackable chair is made from recycled industrial waste such as office chair components, fishing nets or carpets. As the first Dutch chair to use a deposit system, REX can be returned at any time to local Circuform collection points. Returned deposit chairs are checked and cleaned, repaired if necessary and resold – again with a deposit. Broken chairs serve as the raw material for new production.

Shared Factory

ito ito GmbH

With Shared Factory from ito ito GmbH, fashion labels and knitting mills become part of a digital on-demand design and production platform for knitwear. With the SaaS solution, designs can be digitised, freely modified, purchased and only then manufactured – with fully recyclable products, a transparent supply chain and no overproduction. ito ito automates local fashion production with flexible quantities, shorter production times and delivery routes, while facilitating circular economy models and reducing CO2 emissions.

Steelcase Flex Perch Stool

Steelcase AG

The Steelcase Flex Perch Stool is the world's first piece of furniture to be made with plastic from BASF's ChemCycling™ project. This technology creates a new type of raw material from a waste stream deriving from electronics production. This reduces both waste and the use of fossil resources. The standing stool is space-saving, flexible to use and durable and can be fully recycled at the end of its life cycle.

Transparent paper sleeves

Compostella GmbH

Compostella's transparent sheet protectors are pure paper products that do entirely without fossil raw materials in the course of production. Due to the chlorine-free bleached cellulose, they are both recyclable and fully compostable. And thanks to the high transparency, it is also possible to scan and copy documents without removing them from the sleeves. Production is carried out using machines powered by photovoltaic electricity from solar modules on the roof of the company building. The paper comes from a regional paper mill.

V-Locker Smart Bike Parking System

V-Locker AG

Climate-friendly mobility with bicycles and e-bikes is dependent on suitable infrastructure. Using the automated V-Locker Smart Bike Parking System, which includes a digital operating and service platform, it is possible to safely store up to 60 bikes in a single car parking space. Thanks to individual facade design, the modular towers blend into the urban environment. Greenery, glass, solar or wood cladding are all possible. Assembly and disassembly all require minimal effort. Operation via smartphone app is intuitive and straightforward. Several installations are already in place in Germany and Switzerland, and there are more are in the planning phase.

Wind turbines: precast foundation

Smart & Green Mukran Concrete GmbH

These precast foundations for wind turbines make in-situ concrete foundations obsolete. The prefabricated rib and ring elements together with anchor cage require up to 70% less concrete. Transport to the construction site is possible in around 40 standard trucks, and installation can be completed within one week in almost all weather conditions. The foundations are dismantled without residue and under certain conditions can be reused. In all cases, the foundations can be recycled. The construction site duration is thus more plannable, shorter and more cost-effective.

X–Change Technology

Molto Luce GmbH

Molto Luce X-Change technology enables the straightforward replacement of an LED circuit board without the necessary replacement of the entire lighting fixture. The task is carried out by means of a bayonet connection and is entirely without tools. In the event of a defect, modification to more efficient components or changes in light colour, luminous flux or CRI values, it is no longer necessary to replace the entire luminaire, but only the production-ready chip-on-board LED module. This results in reduced material waste as well as transport effort and expense.

Yonda Chair

Wilkhahn Wilkening+Hahne GmbH+Co.KG

The Yonda range of chairs takes the classic shell chair for hybrid living and working environments and adapts it to modern requirements. Its contemporary form, seating comfort and versatile design are designed to meet the demands of the circular economy. For this reason, the chair, which is particularly easy to dismantle and is largely unmixed, uses a biocomposite shell, which can be later processed into a granulate for new components.


Here you can find an overview of all nominated and winning projects since 2012. Among them are works by companies, design offices and marketing agencies, architecture or engineering firms, researchers and students from varied sectors.