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WertNetzWerke: A New Centre for Digitalisation and Circular Economy for SMEs is Launched!

SCP-Centre - 13. Dezember 2022 - 12:53

Current key topics such as Circular Economy and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are becoming ever more important for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). One of the questions to consider is: How can SMEs use AI as a tool to innovate their business models and collaborate to create circular solutions?

The Centre for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises WertNetzWerke (Mittelstand-Digital Zentrum WertNetzWerke) launched in November 2022 under the umbrella of Mittelstand Digital, a network of competence centres funded by the German government to support digitalisation in SMEs. The new centre is a follow up of the recently-concluded Competence Centre eStandards, a Mittelstand Digital project in which the CSCP was a partner.

The WertNetzWerke competence centre will take a hands-on approach through practice-oriented formats and tools. The centre will launch value creation labs for information and training both in virtual set-ups (simulations) as well as through in-person networking. Moreover, a German-wide roadshow and dialogue formats will be organised to enable knowledge transfer.

As one of the six consortium partners, the CSCP will support SMEs with its expertise on Circular Economy, AI and the EU Digital Product Passport (DPP). The CSCP will facilitate  matchmaking and support SMEs in joint projects and initiatives with other actors.

“In the past years, we have seen an increasing interest by SMEs to engage in sustainability and Circular Economy. However, we often find a lack of know-how on how to start and what to implement. By facilitating collaboration between different stakeholders and supporting with digital solutions, we aim to enable SMEs to strengthen their business models and implement hands-on Circular Economy projects”, says Thomas Wagner, CSCP Project Manager.

Through workshops, webinars, and online tools such as the Circular Economy Guide, the new centre will support SMEs in designing and implementing Circular Economy projects.

During the first activities of centre, CSCP’s Mike Tabel presented solutions and best practices of recent years at the workshop “What helps on the way to more digitalisation and resource efficiency?”, hosted by the Institute of the German Economy (IW), while Thomas Wagner joined the “Basque Circular Summit” to exchange on an international level about sustainable Circular Economy, eco-design and the Digital Product Passport.

In addition to the CSCP, the project consortium includes 6 others partners: GS1 Germany, the German Association of Materials Management, Purchasing and Logistics (BME), the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology FIT, the Fraunhofer Center for International Management and Knowledge Economy IMW, and the Wisnet Innovation Research Institute (w.i.r.i.).

The WertNetzWerke centre is funded by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Protection (Bundesministerium für Wirtschaft und Klimaschutz – BMWK) and it will run for 3 years.

For further questions, please contact Thomas Wagner.

The post WertNetzWerke: A New Centre for Digitalisation and Circular Economy for SMEs is Launched! appeared first on CSCP gGmbH.

Kategorien: english, Ticker

No water in hospitals

D+C - 13. Dezember 2022 - 12:41
Hospital patients suffer from lack of water in Malawi

Several factors account for Malawi’s acute water shortages. “One of the reasons is that our rivers and streams have dried up due to many droughts. Even some of the boreholes do not function,” says Janet Shaibu, chairperson of Chindamba borehole committee in Machinga district, one of the hardest hit areas.

Besides climate change, increasing human activity due to population growth has put a lot of stress on the environment. Deforestation is very common. Many locals depend on charcoal for fuel. This is made by burning trees to form a black flammable substance.

Water shortages in hospitals are also caused by inadequate water infrastructure. Many health facilities rely on ground drilled water boreholes. However, boreholes often break down within two years of their installation, in part because the water table is getting lower.

Eneles Ndaipa recalls her experience with the community’s water supply. She says that when she bore her first child 15 years ago, she was asked to bring a bucket of water to the hospital because Chikwewo health centre, located in Zomba district in southern Malawi, had no running water. “When I was due for delivery my mother and I left our home with a bucket of water which we drew from a nearby water well,” she says.

WaterAid, an international non-government organisation with funding from the Scottish government, has made things better now. When Ndaipa went to deliver her third child, she found that the health centre had installed water storage tanks. A water well has been drilled nearby. Water pumps, pipes and tanks have been installed to supply the hospital and workers’ homes. “It is fine now. We have water and the taps are not drying at all,” says Ndaipa.

But in other hospitals, water is scarce. In Malawi 24 % of the country’s public health facilities are running without water, according to WaterAid. Patients and their attendants are often asked to bring in buckets of water for use.

Mercy Masoo, WaterAid country director, warns: “This is a crisis. We have an outbreak of cholera which is not usual this time of the year. But all this points to one thing; people don’t have access to clean water in their homes.” WaterAid tries to improve the situation and is providing piped water to health facilities, but there is still a lot to do.

Raphael Mweninguwe is a freelance journalist based in Malawi.


Kategorien: english

Envisioning climate change debates and policies through the tension triangle lens

GDI Briefing - 13. Dezember 2022 - 12:05

Recently, awareness about climate change has increased. Behavioural changes and micro-level and macro-level actions towards low-carbon economies are becoming more widespread, propelled by increasing scientific evidence and climate activism. As individuals continue to become more climate-conscious, climate-mitigation legislation has also gained traction. In 2019, the European Commission agreed on the European Green Deal, which included a recommendation to phase out new financing for fossil fuel projects in third countries. This recommendation was reiterated at the COP26 in Glasgow, by the European Investment Bank, and more recently by the European Commission in preparation for the COP27 in Cairo. Against this background, the European Parliament recently adopted resolution 2022/2826(RSP), broadly condemning alleged human rights violations linked with the planned construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP). Alongside the human rights questions, the European Parliamentarians also argue that the project will both increase emissions and cause ecological damage—and so, in line with European climate policies, they argue that the project should close.
In this essay, I use the example of EU resolution 2022/2826(RSP) and the debates surrounding it to argue that whilst debates following this and similar resolutions supporting blanket bans on fossil fuel investments in low-income countries might be well-intentioned, a more differentiated view of the implications of these resolutions is necessary, especially considering developing countries’ needs and preferences. Blanket application of climate strategies developed in the Global North (such as stopping funding fossil fuel extractions in low-income countries) can be deeply unfair and unjust, and entrench more poverty than they hope to reduce. Moreover, these debates tend to focus on the policy needs of the Global North, with limited regard to Global South contexts and needs. This is especially significant in the context of aiming for just energy transitions, in which low-income countries are not left worse off without fossil fuel extraction.

Kategorien: english

Sustainable Cashmere: The Story of Mongolia

SCP-Centre - 13. Dezember 2022 - 11:03

Based on traditional pastoralist livelihoods, the cashmere and wool sector is a key driver of the Mongolian economy and second only to the extractive industries. It is, however, facing challenges due to increased competition from foreign processors. In the past 4 years, our STeP EcoLab Mongolia project shared knowledge on social and environmental standards with Mongolian wool processors and cashmere herders. We supported them in implementing the newly-acquired practices as well as in communicating the value of sustainable Mongolian cashmere to European and global consumers.

The journey started in 2018 with a comprehensive assessment of the Mongolian wool and cashmere value chain. Herders as well as processors were involved in the analysis, yielding a thorough view on the sustainability risks and opportunities of the sector. The onsite assessment was complemented by an analysis on market demands as well as established sustainability communication instruments that could serve as guidance.

This assessment served as the foundation for the development of several capacity building formats, involving all relevant actors of the value chain and with a focus on linkages to other actors up- or downstream. By connecting the industry’s huge innovation potential with the sustainability demands of European and global target markets, first sustainable product lines were drafted.

In order to improve the industry’s sustainability performance in the long term, a voluntary code of practice (VCP) was developed with industry stakeholders. The document was signed by 18 companies, among them the leading Mongolian companies for wool and cashmere production. The aim of this VCP was ambitious: On one hand, the focus was to increase the sustainability of cashmere production and, on the other hand, to convert the business model according to criteria of established European cashmere sustainability standards.

To ensure that the roadmap defined in the VCP leads to more sustainable value chains, the new practices must be accepted by the market. To raise awareness, the project team worked with relevant stakeholders to develop a label to communicate the efforts of Mongolian cashmere producers to European consumers.

In 2020, the main stakeholders in Mongolia’s Wool and Cashmere sector joined forces as one exhibitor at the Première Vision, the world’s leading trade show for textiles and fibres. The sector put an emphasis on the uniqueness of sustainable, authentic nomadic farming practices and their high value products.

The European consumer demand for sustainable products is on the rise and aspects such as circularity need to be thought through wool and cashmere as well. Moreover, the implementation of a certification scheme for sustainable nomadic practices needs to continue and be further advanced. The CSCP project team is exploring ways to tackle these targets in our upcoming work.

For further information, please contact Pawel Zylka.

The post Sustainable Cashmere: The Story of Mongolia appeared first on CSCP gGmbH.

Kategorien: english, Ticker

Welcome remarks

Devex - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:56
Kategorien: english

Tackling the global debt crisis

Devex - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:56
Kategorien: english

Full disclosure: Increasing DFI transparency

Devex - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:56
Kategorien: english

Spur to grow: Investing in Africa

Devex - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:56
Kategorien: english

Closing Remarks

Devex - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:55
Kategorien: english

Unsolicited representation of others happens in international development, so let’s talk about it!

EADI Debating Development Research - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:40
By Margit van Wessel / New Rhythms of Development blog series It’s not a popular idea, but I want to express it nonetheless: many development organizations engage in representation, here conceptualized as ‘acting on behalf of others’. They articulate rights for groups, advance problem definitions important to particular groups, and advocate solutions for specific groups’ …
Kategorien: english, Ticker

Civil society says no to status quo, people over profit, through Unmet Gala

CSO Partnership - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:39


13 December 2022

Geneva, Switzerland – Global civil society platform CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness (CPDE) held a parade for effective development cooperation in time for the High-Level Meeting (HLM3) in Geneva, last 13 December at the Hilton Hotel lobby.

Titled CPDE Unmet Gala: A civil society parade for equality and justice, the event was a twist on the Met Gala, and made a reference to unmet development effectiveness commitments towards sustainable development goals (SDGs).

The parade featured bespoke clothing designed by a collective of artists from the global South (SAKA), around the themes of SDGs, climate change, conflict and fragility, shrinking civic space, and private sector engagement.

Check-out the photos of each attire and the parade on our dedicated webpage.

“Through this event, CPDE hopes to more creatively convey our demands around effective development cooperation, and urgent and extraordinary measures needed to put us back on track towards the SDGs or the Agenda 2030,” said CPDE co-chair Marita Gonzalez.

Images and slogans like No to status quo, There is no Planet B, and People over profit embroidered, hand-painted, sublimated, or sewn on the upcycled clothing, were worn by CPDE members from around the world. The messages were based on the civil society delegation’s messages and key asks for the Effective Development Cooperation Summit/HLM3.

The Unmet Gala attires were later showcased in the Summit venue, as an interactive space where participants were also able try them on in support of the messages.


 About CPDE. CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness is a platform that unites civil society organisations (CSOs) from around the world on the issue of effective development cooperation. Our members come from six regions and eight major sectors: faith-based, feminist, indigenous peoples, international CSOs, labour, migrants, rural, and youth. Learn more via

The post Civil society says no to status quo, people over profit, through Unmet Gala appeared first on CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness.

Kategorien: english, Ticker

The Energy Transition or Development – Will Developing Countries Need to Choose?

OECD - 13. Dezember 2022 - 9:30

y Laura Parry-Davies, Digital Communications Officer, OECD Development Centre

Countries with low access to energy and minimal contributions to greenhouse gas emissions are being asked to prioritise the low-carbon transition over economic growth.

Is this fair? Will the benefits of switching to net-zero outweigh the costs?

The post The Energy Transition or Development – Will Developing Countries Need to Choose? appeared first on Development Matters.

Kategorien: english

Murky trade waters: regional tariff commitments and non-tariff measures in Africa

GDI Briefing - 13. Dezember 2022 - 8:16

In several African regions, economic integration has successfully reduced tariff protection by freezing the opportunity to raise applied tariffs against fellow integration partners above those promised. We examine whether these regional tariff commitments have come at the expense of adverse side-effects on the prevalence of non-tariff trade barriers. Comparing the effects of applied tariff overhangs – the difference between MFN bound tariffs and effectively applied tariffs – towards all vis-à-vis African trading partners on SPS and TBT notifications of 35 African WTO members from 2001-2017, we find no general relationship between tariff overhangs and import regulation in our preferred model setting. Larger tariff overhangs specific to intra-African trade relations, however, increase the probability of SPS measures and TBT and thereby contrast with the common assumption of the former functioning as a flexible policy valve. We see the nature of Africa’s formal trade relations as an explanation for these findings. While regional tariff commitments have not only significantly moved African countries away from multilateral commitments, they have also sharply reduced their tariff policy space within Africa, thus seemingly leaving regulatory policy as one of the few legitimate options to level the playing field with the by far closest market competitors.

Kategorien: english

Social and development impact bonds by the numbers

Brookings - 12. Dezember 2022 - 16:00

By Emily Gustafsson-Wright, Elyse Painter

Since 2014, Brookings has developed and maintained a comprehensive database on the global impact bonds market. The below data represents a snapshot from that database updated each month.

For further Brookings research on impact bonds, visit our Impact Bonds Project page.


Kategorien: english

World Cup joins team UN to kick-off Universal Health Coverage Day

UN #SDG News - 12. Dezember 2022 - 13:00
To mark Universal Health Coverage Day on Monday, the UN is sharing the spotlight with the biggest sporting event in the world this week - the FIFA World Cup semi-finals. A showcase celebration of Health for All on the eve of the first showdown between Argentina and Croatia, is taking place on the main stage at the FIFA Fan Festival in Doha, Qatar.
Kategorien: english


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