5 JUN 2017

World Circular Economy Forum 2017

Monday 5 June 2017 at 12:00 - Tuesday 6 June 2017 klo. 17:00
Mannerheimintie 13, Helsinki, Finland
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Finlandia Hall

World Circular Economy Forum 2017

Presenting the world's best circular economy solutions

The ground-breaking event of the year gathers together the most recognised experts and decision makers in the field and presents the world’s best circular economy solutions. Be at the epicentre of the circular economy with 1,200 key people at Finlandia Hall in Helsinki, Finland, on the 5th and 6th of June 2017.

Why should you come to WCEF2017?

Come and share experiences and select the best solutions that allow businesses to gain a competitive advantage, create more value and generate new growth and jobs in societies around the world. Our programme consists of 17 plenary and parallel sessions showcasing circular economy solutions for business, cities and finance.

Find out how the circular economy presents new and unprecedented opportunities to create wealth and wellbeing, as well as how it is the essential engine to achieve the ambitious UN Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals.

Experience Finland’s own inspirational story as a global leader as we turn our vision for a circular economy into a road map and deliver concrete benefits across all sectors of business and society. The programme offers a variety of side events and business excursions.

Walk along the Boulevard of Opportunities and explore the circular economy solutions presented on the marketplace, share your ideas and visions on the opportunities stage and meet interesting new people at the Lakeside chats.

Helsinki is the place to be next June. During WCEF2017, the UN International Resource Panel (IRP) will hold its meetings in Helsinki and launch new reports. The IRP consists of world leading scientists on issues related to sustainable management of natural resources and circular economy. While meeting in Helsinki, Panel members will also contribute to WCEF2017.

Who’s coming?

We’re excited to have the world’s top business leaders, policymakers, researchers and innovators at WCEF2017. You’ll have the chance to share thoughts and interact with Achim Steiner (Director, Oxford Martin School, former UNEP Executive Director), Poppy Allonby (Managing Director, BlackRock), Jyrki Katainen (Vice President, European Commission), Ashok Khosla (Founder and President, Development Alternatives), Janez Potocnik (Co-chair, UNEP International Resource Panel, former European Comissioner for the Environment), Mari Pantsar (Director, Sitra) and many more inspirational thought leaders.

How to be part of WCEF2017?

The World Circular Economy Forum is free of charge to participants – our gift to the world as we celebrate Finland’s 100th Anniversary Year and also World Environment Day. Be assured of the warmest of welcomes and some special surprises from the Land of the Midnight Sun!

Participation is by invitation only. If you are interested in joining, please contact wcef2017(at)sitra.fi for your registration link.

In case you are interested in partnering or organising a side event, please let us know.

Call for marketplace hosts has closed

The decisions will be made soon and the applicants will be contacted during February. The marketplace of WCEF2017 brings into the spotlight selected circular economy solutions around the world. 


The World Circular Economy Forum 2017 consists of 17 plenary and parallel sessions showcasing circular economy solutions for business cities and finance. Two days of discussions, networking, workshops, side events and business excursions.

Here you can see the overview of the World Circular Economy Forum 2017 programme. 

Detailed programme

By clicking this link you can have a closer look at the programme. Please notice the changes in the schedule.

Side Events 

Together with WCEF2017, a number of side events will be held. Side events are separate events and require separate registration. They are held around the main event itself without overlapping with it, and can include e.g. site visit(s) and networking activities around a specific topic related to circular economy. More information coming soon.

6th June 2017

Official WCEF2017 reception at the Helsinki City Hall

7th June 2017 (preliminary)

Bioeconomy side event, organised by OECD, TEM, Tekes
Digitalisation side event, organised by Deloitte
Excursion: Flying planes with waste? Discover how waste is turned into high-quality biofuels, organised by Neste
Excursion: Bioruukki, organised by VTT
Excursion: Helsinki district heating and cooling, organised by Helsinki energy
Investor side event, organised by EU, FVCA, Fiban
Stimulating Rural Economy: Actions Towards Combating Migration, Poverty and Hunger side event, organised by African Union
Technology side event, organised by Technology industries of Finland


The marketplace of WCEF2017 brings into the spotlight selected circular economy solutions around the world. You can meet the following organisations on the marketplace:

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH
Finnish sustainable communities (FISU) network
FLOOW2, World's Reset Button
Globe Hope Oy
TEDA Eco Center, Green Development League of National Economic-Technological Development
WEEE (waste electrical and electronic equipment) Forum aisbl
Yhteinen pöytä (Shared table -initiative by the City of Vantaa and Vantaa Parish Union)
Zero Waste Scotland


The World Circular Economy Forum 2017 gathers together the most recognised experts and decisions makers in the field of ciruclar economy. Here are the first confirmed speakers and the list will be updated continuously.

Poppy Allonby

Managing Director and Portfolio Manager, BlackRock

Poppy Allonby is a professional investor in an energy sector in transition.

As a member of BlackRock's Natural Resources Team she is responsible for approx. $4 billion in global Energy investment funds. She manages investments in both the oil & gas sector and in businesses that are facilitating and benefiting from the transition to a lower carbon economy (for example: clean tech, renewable power, energy efficiency and sustainable mobility). Poppy's service with the firm dates back to 2000, including her years at Merrill Lynch Investment Managers.
Poppy serves as a Commissioner on the Energy Transitions Commission. In 2016, she was honored by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader.

Jyrki Katainen

Vice President, European Commission

Jyrki Katainen brings the EU perspective and macroeconomic ideas to the circular economy.

The former Prime Minister of Finland is currently Vice President of the European Commission responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness. His responsibilities include delivering a €300 billion public and private investment programme. Katainen also pursues structural reforms and policy coordination. Among other things, his project team focuses on the digital economy, entrepreneurship, climate action and energy: all prime components of the circular economy.

Ashok Khosla

Founder and Chairman, Development Alternatives

Ashok Khosla is a pioneer and expert of sustainable development.

By helping create the concept of social enterprise he pioneered business-like approaches for eradicating poverty and conserving natural resources. Khosla has broad experience in environmental and development issues, from heading India’s environmental agency – the first in a developing country – to directing the United Nations Environment Programme. He is a promoter of commercially viable, environmentally friendly technologies.

Matti Lievonen

President and CEO, Neste

Matti Lievonen brings the corporate viewpoint to the circular economy and knows how to make profits while doing well.

Before moving to the energy sector Lievonen worked in the forestry, power and automation industries. That experience served him well when he became CEO of Neste, a global leader in producing next-generation renewable fuels and chemicals. He is leading Neste towards cleaner solutions: the company is already the world’s largest producer of renewable diesel. Lievonen also understands the role of businesses in reducing emissions and mitigating climate change, particularly in the transportation sector.

Mari Pantsar

Director, Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra

Mari Pantsar envisages and works for a carbon neutral and sustainable future.

After working for forestry giant UPM in environmental affairs Pantsar moved to public and private positions in the cleantech sector. She led, among other things, the Finnish Cleantech Cluster and the Finnish government’s cleantech strategy programme. She also served on the boards of several cleantech companies. Pantsar now heads Sitra’s “resource-wise and carbon-neutral society” theme area. Her job is to help Finland develop into an ecologically sustainable, competitive society. Pantsar has experience getting large groups of stakeholders to cooperate for a common objective – a critical part of developing the circular economy.

Janez Potocnik

Co-chair, UNEP International Resource Panel

Janez Potocnik brings the knowledge of a scientist and economist to resource use and the environment.

As an academic in economic studies Potocnik headed the negotiating team for Slovenia’s accession to the EU. He has served two terms as European Commissioner, first leading Science and Research and then directing Environment. Now at the International Resource Panel, Potocnik leads scientific experts as they help countries use natural resources sustainably without compromising economic growth and human development. He is also a partner in Systemiq, an enterprise designed specifically to tackle system failures.

Achim Steiner

Director, Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford

Achim Steiner is an expert at bringing together diverse partners on significant global environmental issues.

Prior to joining the Oxford Martin School Steiner served as United Nations Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Steiner positioned UNEP as a central global player on climate change, technology innovation, ecosystems management and the role of the private sector in sustainable development. He was a major force behind the UN sustainable development goals.

Peter Bakker

President, World Business Council for Sustainable Development

Erik Bang

Project Manager, H&M Foundation

Joss Bleriot

Executive Officer, Ellen MacArthur Foundation

Hans Bruyninckx

Executive Director, European Environment Agency

Jamie Butterworth

Partner, Circularity Capital

Ruxandra Draghia-Akli

Deputy Director-General for Research and Innovation, European Commission

Paul Ekins

Professor of Resources and Environmental Policy at and Director of the UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources, University College London, member of the UNEP International Resource Panel

Carmen Ene

CEO, 3 Step IT

Hermann Erdmann

CEO, Redisa

Brendan Gillespie

Partner, Green Solution Network

Thomas Graedel

Clifton R. Musser Professor of Industrial Ecology in the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Yale University, Member of the UNEP Inernational Resource Panel

Sampo Hietanen

CEO, MaaS Global Ltd.

Jennifer Holmgren

CEO, LanzaTech

Anni Huhtala

Director General, VATT Institute for Economic Research

Erja Hyrsky

Managing Director, Unilever Finland

Dagfinn Høybråten

Secretary General, Nordic Council of Ministers

Karen Dahl Jensen

Product Development Manager, Nordic Ecolabel

Jyrki Kangas

Professor/Chairman of the Board, University of Eastern Finland/Koli Forum

Oskar Korkman

CEO, Alice Labs

Mikko Kosonen

President, Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra

Frido Kraanen

Director Cooperative and CSR, PGGM

Stephen Lintner

Senior Technical Advisor, World Bank

Heikki Martela

Chairman of the Board, Martela

Glenn Mason

Assistant Deputy Minister, Natural Resources Canada

Sofus Midtgaard

Founder & Managing Partner, Leaderlab

Ari Nissinen

Head of Unit, SYKE

Jad Oseyran

Circular Economy Lead, IBM Global Business Services

Marc Palahi

Director, European Forest Institute

Toke Sabroe

Partner, Leaderlab

Stephan Sicars

Director of the Department of Environment, UNIDO

Kirsi Sormunen

Non-Executive Director, Senior Advisor

Per Stoltz

Circular and Waste Manager, IKEA Group

Martin Stuchtey

Founder & Managing Partner, SystemiQ Ltd. 

Kimmo Tiilikainen

Finnish Minister of Agriculture and the Environment

Annachiara Torciano

Corporate Affairs Manager, Samsung

Antti Vasara

President & CEO of VTT Ltd (Technical Research Center of Finland)

Scott Vaughan

President and Chief Executive Officer, International Institute for Sustainable Development

Anders Wijkman

Co-president, Club of Rome

Marco Zappalorto

Head of European Development, NESTA

Dimitri Zenghelis

Co-head Climate Policy, London School of Economics and Political Science

Timo Mäkelä

Senior Advisor, Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra


Travel and Accommodation

Helsinki can easily be reached from anywhere in the world. Helsinki International Airport is located in Vantaa, thirty minutes from the city centre. The airport connects Finland to Europe, the Americas, Africa, Asia and serves about two hundred international flights each day.

Information about required travel documents can be found here.

The World Circular Economy Forum 2017 recommends compensation for the CO2-emissions of your flights. At the same time you can promote renewable energy. The compensation can be done for example with the non-profit providers Atmosfair, My Climate or any other organization you wish to donate your compensation to.

Transport to and from Helsinki Airport

There are many ways to get to and from Helsinki Airport to the city centre: public transportation, Finnair City Bus, train or taxi. More information here.

Public Transport in Helsinki

Helsinki is well served by public networks. Helsinki Region Transport (HSL) provides an integrated service throughout the city. With a single ticket it is possible to travel with trams, busses, the metro and even the ferry. Modern city bikes are also a convenient way to move around the city. More information here.

Hotel Information

The organisers of the World Circular Economy Forum 2017 have negotiated special conference rates on limited number of rooms at several hotels within walking distance of the conference venue. All bookings include breakfast and Wi-Fi access. The special rates are available until 5th of May 2017 or as long as special priced rooms are available. Please notice that participant is responsible of all the travel and accommodation expenses.

All selected hotels are committed to minimising environmental stress and to develop sustainable solutions. All hotels have an environmental certificate. More information available on hotels websites.

Selected hotels here.

Helsinki - Host City of WCEF2017

Helsinki is a modern, pocket-sized European city known for design and high technology. Helsinki's attractive and unique character comes from its proximity to the sea, as well as its location between the East and the West. More information here.

Finland - the Land of the Midnight Sun

Finland is the big surprise of the Nordic countries, a natural wonderland with more trees than people and more islands than any other nation in the world. With miles of empty wilderness, the Finns are uniquely in tune with their natural surroundings. More information here.

Finlandia Hall - the eco-friendly Venue of WCEF2017 

The World Circular Economy Forum 2017 will take place at the Finlandia Hall. It is a dynamic, multipurpose venue located in the centre of Helsinki. Finlandia Hall is committed to pursuing ecological responsibility in all it's operations. For example solar panels will be installed on the roof of the venue by the end of 2016. More information here.

Location and transportation to Finlandia Hall here.


5 JUN 2017

World Circular Economy Forum 2017

Monday 5 June 2017 at 12:00 - Tuesday 6 June 2017 klo. 17:00
Mannerheimintie 13, Helsinki, Finland
→ Show on map

Finlandia Hall



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