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From waste to resource – how can we turn garbage into gold?


BMBF starts German-Indian ideas competition on waste disposal in India / Submit ideas online at by 10 June 2016.

The Indian economy is growing rapidly – and with it the mountains of refuse. The increasing volume of waste is placing enormous stress on the population, the environment and the climate.

Starting today, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) is now looking for answers to the question “From waste to resource – how can we turn garbage into gold?” in cooperation with the regional initiative “Germany – Land of Ideas” as part of its international campaign “Shaping the Future – Building the City of Tomorrow”. The ideas competition aims not only to inspire innovative solutions, but also to intensify the dialogue and exchange between India and Germany.

The ideas competition is being held on the open innovation platform Innovationskraftwerk and is open to the German and Indian public. Creative minds and dedicated institutions that wish to focus on the viability and sustainability of Indian cities are invited to submit innovative ideas on how to tackle the issue of waste in Indian cities between 27 April and 10 June 2016. The BMBF will reward the providers of the best ideas with a scientifically oriented trip to India or Germany.

Whether electronic scrap, household trash or industrial waste, the increasing urbanisation and constant population growth in India are causing an increase in the volume of refuse. According to estimates by the Indian Ministry of the Environment, around 165 million tons of waste will be generated in 2030.

India’s municipal authorities are facing numerous challenges in disposing of this garbage: many parts of India have no regulated trash and waste water disposal systems, and the concept of waste separation and recycling has yet to gain a foothold in many Indian households.

Waste is usually thrown onto open refuse heaps without being separated. The increasing quantities of hazardous electronic waste, which is often disposed of in illegal workshops in conditions that constitute a health hazard, are a threat to both the population and the environment.

About Innovationskraftwerk and “Shaping The Future – Building the City of Tomorrow”

The regional initiative “Germany – Land of Ideas” operates the open innovation platform Innovationskraftwerk together with innovation consultants inno-focus businessconsulting; innovation managers from renowned companies monitor its development.

The ideas competition “From waste to resource – how can we turn garbage into gold?” kicks off the BMBF’s international campaign “Shaping the Future – Building the City of Tomorrow”. This focuses on the question of how cities can be maintained as viable, sustainable living spaces. After the national Science Year “City of the Future”, the campaign now aims to expand this theme internationally, concentrating in particular on five countries: India, China, Vietnam, Colombia and the USA. The goal is to stimulate international networking and make Germany even more well-known and visible as a hub of international research and innovation. The DLR Project Management Agency is managing the campaign on behalf of the BMBF

Press contacts

Germany – Land of Ideas
Pierre Dombrowski
Tel.: (+49) (0)30 206459-180

DLR Project Management Agency
Corinna Stefani
Tel.: (+49) (0)228 3821-1372

About DLR Project Management Agency

The DLR Project Management Agency specialises in services for the funding of research, innovation and education. It operates on behalf of German federal ministries, the European Commission, German federal states as well as scientific organisations, foundations and associations. It advises on political and institution-related strategies and programmes, provides technical and administrative assistance for research funding initiatives, and supports the transfer of knowledge and the exploitation of research results. It covers a wide range of topics, from education, society and health through key technologies, the environment and sustainability to European and international collaboration. As one of Germany’s largest project management agencies, it currently manages around 9,500 projects and research funding of EUR 1 billion:

Weitere Informationen: - Link to competition

Petra Richter | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

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