MacArthur Foundation Design Guide Now Features MaterialWise Chemical Screening Tool

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Companies, organizations and consumers are increasingly motivated to make and use products sustainably, driving circular-economy principles to the forefront of design thinking. New Safe & Circular modules added to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s  Circular Design Guide and featuring MaterialWise’s chemical hazard screening tool expand the guide’s offerings to make that shift easier for designers and companies ready to take action.

The new, advanced-level modules’ goal is to focus attention on the materials we use. Whether it’s improving the safety of users or ensuring that resources can be used again and again, it’s clear: material selection matters. The new modules feature Materialwise’s free screening tool, powered by the Healthy Building Network’s Pharos database. The tool offers users full access to more than 100,000 known chemicals of concern, along with information about common uses and exposures and why certain hazards matter. Modules guide users in such undertakings as running their own product-redesign workshop or shifting an organization’s business strategy to prioritize material health.


The entire guide, created by MaterialWise partner the Ellen MacArthur Foundation with global design firm IDEO, contains modules for users at every level, from worksheets and videos illuminating what exactly is meant by “circular” to tutorials on making smart material choices, rich with real-world examples of best practices in action.

Try the new Safe & Circular modules yourself here, and learn more in a podcast about making positive material choices hosted by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Emma Fromberg and featuring MaterialWise’s Stacy Glass.