Central Solutions (Climate Ready Academy) – Circular Economy Leaders Programme - Antaris Consulting

Central Solutions (Climate Ready Academy) – Circular Economy Leaders Programme

Executive Summary

Antaris has designed and delivered a Circular Economy Leaders programme in partnership with Central Solutions. The programme was delivered successfully last Autumn, resulting in all participating organisations taking the initial steps in transitioning towards a more circular and sustainable mode of operation.

Due to exceptional demand, the programme is being repeated this Spring to twenty companies and is planned to run again in September.

Company Introduction

Central Solutions, in partnership with Skillnet Ireland, launched the Climate Ready Academy, a national upskilling initiative that aims to support Irish businesses in developing the skills and knowledge required to respond to climate change. The Climate Ready Academy is part of the overall Climate Ready programme, a five-year national climate upskilling initiative developed in partnership with industry.

Climate Ready Academy is funded as part of Skillnet Ireland Climate Ready initiative. Skillnet Ireland is funded from the National Training Fund through the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science.

Following extensive engagement with national, corporate and trade association stakeholders, Central Solutions and Skillnet Ireland developed a suite of training programmes offered through the Climate Ready Academy in the fields of Climate Action, Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility.

Central Solutions works with large private sector companies and public sector organisations in the following three areas:

  • Enterprise Solutions: helping clients transform the way they do business
  • Sustainability & Water: Helping clients achieve sustainability leadership
  • Training & Compliance: Helping clients meet their corporate sustainability goals

The Climate Ready Academy Masterclass series connects business owners and managers with thought leadership and expertise in the areas of climate action and sustainability. Through interactive and informative sessions curated by experts, participants gain insight into best practice models on a global level.



As part of its remit for designing and delivering world class solutions for its clients that deliver optimum efficiencies and drive transformational change, Central Solutions sought to engage a suitably qualified and experienced provider to assist with the design and delivery of a new Circular Economy Leaders Programme which would focus on addressing the needs of large and medium sized firms to develop an overall action plan for the management of Circular Economy related issues.

The purpose of this programme was to assist companies to prepare an initial Charter for their industry or service site. The Charter sets out to capture the business case for action, summarise the monitoring and targeting regime and capture a robust 12-to-24-month action plan for the organisation.  

The Ellen Macarthur Foundations defines the circular economy as a systems solution framework that tackles global challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, waste, and pollution.

In our current economy, we take materials from the Earth, make products from them, and eventually throw them away as waste – the process is linear. In a circular economy, by contrast, we redesign, business models, processes and products to stop waste being produced in the first place, or to reuse, or regenerate the waste materials.

The circular economy is based on three principles, driven by design:

  • Eliminate waste and pollution
  • Circulate products and materials (at their highest value)
  • Regenerate nature

It is underpinned by a transition to renewable energy and materials. A circular economy decouples economic activity from the consumption of finite resources. It is a resilient system that is good for business, people and the environment.

Whilst the philosophy and concepts of the circular economy are not new there is a dearth of available courses for industries to apply its principles in a practical, effective and efficient manner. Central Solutions set out to address this deficit.

The Solution

Antaris was successful in winning the tender to design and deliver the Circular Economy Leaders programme.

The programme is based on a number of best practices including BS 8001:2017 Framework for implementing the principles of the circular economy and methodologies developed by the University of Cambridge Circular Economy Centre/Ellen Mac Arthur Foundation. 

The aims of the programme are as follows:

  • Building the Business Case
  • Mapping Current Practices
  • Baselining & Establishing Targets
  • Gap Analysis & Action Planning
  • Report Out – Presentation of final charter

Antaris designed and developed the programme over last Summer with the intent of delivering it in the Autumn.


The programme was delivered successfully to approximately fifteen companies over a three-month period from September to November 2021 as follows: 

  • Session 1 focused on the drivers of the circular economy. It set out the rationale for embracing the circular economy from climate, biodiversity, and resource constraints to finance and regulation.
  • Session 2 explored resources, dependencies, and tools to assess and improve circularity with company examples.
  • Session 3 looked at idea generation, alternative business models, barriers and circularity gone wrong. 
  • Session 4 discussed plastics, using case studies and industry trends and also looked at guidance on issues which need to be considered when transitioning to a more circular mode. This session also completed the BS 8001:2017 8 step flexible framework for implementing the principles of the circular economy.
  • Each session had a “homework” activity which fed into Session 5 where candidates prepared a practical framework to implement the circular economy in their organisation

This programme provided delegates with the skills and knowledge needed to take the lead in managing their organisations’ circular economy initiatives, while also demonstrating effective ways to decrease operational cost whilst protecting the environment. At the end of the programme all participating organisations has taken the initial steps in transitioning towards a more circular and sustainable mode of operation.

Antaris were delighted to be able to use our experience, skills and expertise to deliver a practical and relevant course. 

We were pleased to receive favourable feedback on the quality and content of the course.

We were also heartened to see the excellent progress made by the candidates in the report out session at the completion of the course.

As a result of the success of the first programme a second Circular Economy Leaders Programme began in February of this year and a third programme is mooted for September.

In addition, Antaris has also participated in a number of Masterclasses on Developing and Implementing a Sustainability Strategy and Carbon Management, again under the auspices of the Climate Ready Academy.

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