Circular by Design


Circular by Design is a first-of-its-kind professional training programme, developed and delivered by the Creative Futures Academy at NCAD and DCCI, to support textile and apparel designers, brands and manufacturers to make the transition to circular practises in every step of their design practice, value chain and business model.  A circular fashion industry is one in which waste and pollution are designed out, products and materials are kept in use for as long as possible, and natural systems are regenerated.

The Circular By Design programme is being piloted in 2022, with 7-10 Irish textiles and apparel designers, brands and manufacturers, and is now open for applications!

Who is this training for?

Circular by Design is for frontrunning Irish textile and apparel designers, brands and manufacturers, who have a passion and interest in driving positive social and environmental impact through their business by adoption of circular practices. 


What will participants learn?


  • Understand the main drivers of circularity in the textiles industry and the urgency for change. 
  • Build a foundational knowledge of  the circular economy;  key elements and strategies and interlinkages with parallel sustainability theories and frameworks. 
  • Gain an in-depth knowledge of circular design and business models, international trends and best practice and the challenges and opportunities stemming from practical application. 


  • Explore the current impact and circular potential of your business and identify hotspots for innovation. 
  • Redesign key value propositions, products, business models according to circular principles.
  • Develop a final circular concept/prototype, and roadmap towards implementation
  • Showcase your circular innovation at the Circular by Design  Innovation Festival 


  • Become part of the Circular by Design Community of Practice, and connect with a national and international network of peers, experts and innovators. 

Cicrular by Design Events:

17th November

Circular by Design Innovation Festival

17th November, 11.00am – 7.00pm, Smock Alley

This inaugural programme will ask the question ‘How might we design a circular textiles industry in Ireland?’ A dynamic, action-oriented programme of talks, panels, showcases and collaborative industry workshops will highlight the urgent need and unique opportunity we have to create a just, circular textiles industry in Ireland – and the critical role that design plays in enabling that transition.

The festival is designed in two parts; to ideate and to activate.

Find out more and book your place HERE.

Note: The hybrid programme will also cater to a remote audience with a livestream of the morning session. A recording will then be made available to registered participants.

18th November

Circular by Design: Coffee + Talks

18th November, 9.30am – 11am, NCAD Gallery

Over coffee & pastries, the Circular by Design team and pilot cohort will highlight the urgent need and unique opportunity we have to create a just, circular textiles industry in Ireland – and the critical role that design and education play in enabling that transition. A talk, panel discussion and showcase of the pilot brands’ pioneering circular solutions will introduce you to the outcomes of the Circular by Design programme so far, as well its future plans to scale and evolve its impact.

Find out more and book your place HERE

Contact us

If you have any query about the Circular By Design training, please email Gwen Cunningham – Circular by Design Project lead at NCAD: 

Find out more about the programme HERE

Circular by Design is proudly supported by a grant from the CIRCULÉIRE Innovation Fund under Grant Number INF-2901-010-2021.

CIRCULÉIRE is Ireland’s first industry-led innovation network dedicated to accelerating the circular economy. Irish Manufacturing Research (IMR) is the secretariat of CIRCULÉIRE which is funded by the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications (DECC), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and EIT Climate-KIC

Delivered in collaboration with:

Circular by Design
Circular by Design

Register Your Interest

If you would like to keep updated about any of our courses sign up below! We will update you on the details of our upcoming courses and any past courses we might be running again.