|[October 25, 2013]
Asia-Pacific Cities Summit: Innovative Ideas Key to Urban Development
KAOHSIUNG, Taiwan --(Business Wire)--
The implementation of urban projects that feature innovative ideas and
value-added production processes is essential to a city's development,
experts and city leaders around the world said at the Asia-Pacific
Cities Summit in Kaohsiung.
While a traditional paradigm of development encouraged citizens to make
better uses of resources, modern cities should turn to initiatives with
more effective designs and an ability to create added value, the
participants said at the summit.
Such concepts, widely applied in so-called "cradle-to-cradle" designs,
could free humans from the restraints they live under, encourage them to
benefit from their consumption and therefore facilitate the growth of
cities, said Michael Braungart, founder of the Environmental Protection
Through the use of such designs in urban projects, cities also learn to
respond to people's needs in an environmentally friendly way, said
Braungart, who coined the term "cradle-to-cradle." In this context, it
refers to a loop process of recycling materials.
"It's not about doing things right but doing the right things,"
His remarks were supported by Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu, who said the
city is trying to apply "cradle-to-cradle" thinking to turn challenges
into opportunities. Kaohsiung will continue to launch innovative
projects to make it more competitive, she said.
About 1,000 city officials and experts from 104 cities across the world
attended the Sept. 9-11 summit, discussing city management and solutions
to various urban challenges.
Braungart also said Taiwan is heavily influenced by Buddhism and was
well-positioned to carry out numerous "cradle-to-cradle" programs.
"People in Taiwan know very well how to think in cycles," he said.
Pauli Gunter, founder-director of the Zero Emissions Research and
Initiatives, added that there have already been many entrepreneurs in
Taiwan implementing groundbreaking ideas, which have created favorable
conditions for different industries to cooperate.
A good example is Singtex Industrial Co., a Taiwanese textile company
that has found a way of turning coffee grinds into fiber, he said.
"The key to broad success is that solutions are offered open source and
with a free spirit," Gunter said.
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