Re-Shaping the New Normal to a Circular Economy

It has been said before that life begins at 40. This is not so with Carlo Delantar who was named a global shaper by the World Economic Forum and was included in Forbes 30 under 30 Asia list of young innovators and disruptors.

I asked him, how does one achieve all this in such a short period of time? What is it like to be inside the mind of Carlo Delantar?

“These accomplishments are simply tools to further amplify my passion for social impact. Time is such a finite resource that, I felt like there is always something to be done. What pushes me are the injustices in the world that are completely solvable with the right solution and the right team in place.”

Carlo, on what fuels his passion for change

Carlo started Waves for Water (W4W) in the Philippines, after helping the NGO in its relief efforts during the aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda. Since then, it has helped more than 1 million Filipinos over 52 provinces nationwide.

“Building up from Waves for Water’s values and narrative, the W4W Philippine team set out to create the same tone of transparency, accountability and passion.”

Carlo, on good governance and accountability for non-government organizations

Coming from a family of manufacturers in Cebu, ingrained in him and his siblings is the need of team work and innovation.

“We were taught to care for the products we make, to the people we support. Looking back, I believe that my passion for social impact originated in those days.”

Carlo, on his younger years of training

Today, Carlo is helping innovate their furniture business by applying the circular economy approach in its business model. Altum Concepts is an extension of their family business. But in this partcular line, Carlo made design democritized, focusing on aesthetics, functionality and price. Altum wants to tackle the issue on sustainability and engage its clients to see how sustainability is integrated in the value chain process.

Circular economy involves systemic change. Two areas that need to be gauged are infrastructure and consumer behavior. Circular Economy is not new, our ancestors grew what they needed at any given time. How do we create a society where all aspects of the ecosystem are collaborative and create solutions for their wastes? By following the principles of Circular Design, this can be achieved.

Carlo Delantar, On the evolution of Circular Economy

Circular Economy is now championed by Sweden and the Netherlands. However, in Asia Pacific, Japan and Taiwan are becoming hotspots for ceicular economy. In the Philippines, the process is slowly gaining grounds with small and medium enterprises and other social enterprises.

With the world coming to a halt due to the Covid 19 pandemic, discussions on how a ‘new normal’ would be is prevalent. Leaders are reflecting on more sustainable ways of doing business and sustaining economies.

“The global state of solitude presents us with the opportunity to be better for the world, our family and ourselves. With the new decade starting to unravel, I believe we can see dramatic changes that will improve how we interact with society and nature.”

Carlo, On his reflections on the state of how we will define the ‘new normal’

As we continue to define what our ‘new normal’ will be, the concept of sustainability and the nature of how the world operates circularly is gaining ground. The sustainable change that this decade will bring about will be driven by innovative disruptors like Carlo. These out-of-the-box leaders will help us thrive beyond the imminent challenges we face, today or in the future – be it disruptors like Covid19 pandemics or issues on climate change.

Photo credits: Carlo Delantar, Altum Concepts |

SustainablePH 2020 | #sustainableph #circulareconomy #sustainabledesign #sustainabilitychampion

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