Hanne Melin Participates in eBay Foundation sponsored CircularFutures

October 5, 2018

Hanne Melin is participating in the CircularFutures, a Leadership Development Program created by Ashoka in co-creation with the eBay Foundation and other partners, such as Patagonia, Philips and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

Melin is part of eBay’s Public Policy Lab, a small team within eBay Government Relations. The Policy Lab seeks to put eBay at the forefront of addressing the public policy issues arising when technology fundamentally transforms commerce and conditions for small business entrepreneurship. The Lab conducts innovative research and develops, socializes and communicates policy innovations in this field.

Through the CircularFutures’ program, 30 participants have been selected from a diverse range of disciplines to take part in an interactive, practical learning experience that champions collaboration, inspires innovation, and builds momentum for change. The program champions system change and new approaches to leadership with a focus on the circular economy. 

A 6-month program launched in September, Hanne Melin was interviewed by Ashoka to share her impressions of the program so far and expectations for the coming months:

“I’m fascinated by changing systems rather than just moving chairs on the deck of the Titanic. For me, this program is really about how to affect change at a systemic level.”

Over the past year, Melin has spent time thinking about what connecting consumer products, the Internet of Things, will mean for commerce, consumer empowerment and the economy. If the Circular Economy is defined as products being services owned by the manufacturers, consumers and third parties are effectively left out of activities like reselling, repurposing, repairing, including the value creation that can happen over a product’s life cycle.

“This was something I was able to explore in Amsterdam, at the CircularFutures launch event. The risk is that the Circular Economy is only something companies do – if citizens can’t repurpose and resell products themselves, they become passive consumers rather than participants in commerce and ultimately the Circular Economy.”

Hanne Melin feels that CircularFutures can help her conceptualize the work and purpose of eBay GR and the Lab and identify new tools and better processes for driving change in the legal environment impacting eBay.