Daniel Baumann on Going Green While Having Fun

Daniel Baumann, Editorial Director Green Transformation at dfv Mediengruppe, currently manages the GREEN.WORKS sustainability initiative, which is empowering companies to successfully master the green transformation. See why having fun should always be a part of the plan

by Rachel Johnson | 08 Aug, 2023
Daniel Baumann on Going Green While Having Fun

With the circular economy, resource consumption is falling. This is a huge lever to mitigate greenhouse gases, avoid environmental damage, and prevent human rights abuses in supply chains.

1. Why does the topic of the circular economy have to be on the agenda of every company? Why is it worthwhile?

The economy is switching into a new mode: sustainability is becoming an integral part of the way it works. Just as we have seen before with digitalization, companies need to internalize this if they still want to get affordable bank loans, meet customer needs, and satisfy regulators in the future. With the circular economy, resource consumption is falling. This is a huge lever to mitigate greenhouse gases, avoid environmental damage, and prevent human rights abuses in supply chains.

2. What are the biggest challenges?

Undoubtedly and obviously, to close the loops. We are dealing with a problem with many dimensions: legal, economic, political, technological, scientific, and cultural. Lock-in effects and path dependencies are an important aspect that must be overcome. A relatively independent waste industry must become an integrated recycling industry. This also requires the support and cooperation of the producing companies. This cooperation must be learned and established. On the part of manufacturers, this requires a new mindset that considers the recyclability of products in all aspects of entrepreneurial activity – and also establishes business models in which the disposal or recycling of products is postponed as far as possible.

3. How would you convince people who are still critical towards the topic?

Reduce costs, fuel innovation, become future-proof, and have fun.

4. A thought-leader, book, or podcast you would recommend?

A few years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing Thibaud Hug de Larauze. At just 35 years old, the Frenchman has created Back Market, a refurbish platform with multi-billion valuation. He shows how hurdles to the circular economy can be overcome and how a circular model can be successfully ramped up economically. He has established refurbished products as a cool category of their own in the marketplace, taking them out of price competition with traditional used goods. He – and a few other pioneers – have thus overcome the “lemons problem”, as economist and Nobel Prize winner George Akerloff had long ago described it with the used car market.

5. Do you have a circular economy mindset yourself?

Certainly not enough yet. But I just bought my first refurb smartphone, which replaces my now seven-year-old phone. It is absolutely top-notch – and only cost 230 euros.

Check out the GREEN.WORKS initiative here.


CIRCULAZE, an initiative launched by business network CURAZE, was started to connect pioneers in sustainable business management and thought leaders to form a network together with the most relevant start- and scale-ups in the field of the Circular Economy. The goal of the community is to establish a powerful ecosystem, to exchange good practices, and inspire each other on the path to even more sustainable companies. Our motto: Can't Do It Alone.

CIRCULAZE is made possible through the friendly support of our amazing co-host dfv Mediengruppe and partners DB Cargo, ODDO BHF, Otto Krahn New Business, Knauf, Capgemini Invent, 4P Capital, Jokey, SBC Hamburg, Payback, Fressnapf, and von Beust & Partner.

Learn more about CIRCULAZE here.



Want to stay informed on our latest content, upcoming events and opportunities? Subscribe to our newsletter!