Computational Design X Circular Economy

Early Stage

Incubation Program

DRIVEN by Volumes

We are looking for ideas that could implement circular economy principles

by embedding advanced technologies from the initial concept design phase.

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ABOUT DRIVEN

DRIVEN Call for Projects

Summer 2020

DRIVEN is an incubation program aiming to embed advanced computational design strategies in early stage entrepreneurship for a circular economy. We strongly believe such strategies and processes have a huge potential to redefine the entire production chain of our cities.

Computational design can play a crucial role in terms of material use awareness: it can optimize the flow of material and its economy,  organize its storage, transportation, and reassembly. These elements are usually not incorporated in the design phase but they have social implications and economic properties that could enrich a design’s value, scalability, impact, and agency.

The goal of DRIVEN is to trigger an awareness of how computational design can be used to consider and put to action all the principles of a circular economy and to showcase built projects embedding such qualities realized as proof of concepts. DRIVEN incubated projects will act as precedents to help all  start-up projects that follow in the pipeline.

For the first and second quarter of 2020, we have incubated 4 projects in the beta version of DRIVEN and we are now ready to launch an upgraded version of the incubation program.

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CALL FOR PROJECTS

Apply now !

The next session of DRIVEN incubation program starts in November 2020 and applications are open.

If you are a designer, architect, engineer, entrepreneur, maker, creative technologist, or something in-between all these fields and you run or plan to build a company to tackle circular economy with computational design, this call for projects may be of interest to you.

We aim to incubate projects that could be real demonstrators of the effectiveness of computational design and fabrication strategies from the design phase to industrial production processes.

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ABOUT REFLOW

Join the REFLOW European Research Program

DRIVEN is operated by VOLUMES Creative and Productive Hub in Paris. Volumes is partner of EU Horizon 2020 Reflow Project, which is focusing on co-creating circular resource flows in cities.

Within this context, Volumes is selecting specific ideas and initiatives that can respond to the Reflow challenges. During the current call for projects, the board of experts at Volumes will select 2 projects which will have free of charge access to a specific track of the DRIVEN incubation program called DRIVEN x REFLOW.

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SELECTION CRITERIA

Which projects are we looking for ?

We are looking for early stage, technology embeddedable entrepreneurship projects and ideas that are committed to create an impact in the Circular Economy.

Early Stage

By early stage, we mean we are actively seeking projects in their fresh ideation phase that are oriented towards solving some of the key challenges of the DRIVEN program. This means you do not need to have an official company or start-up. We are interested in considering applications from deeply motivated and inspired individuals or groups with a goal of integrating computational design and fabrication into circular economy solutions.

Committed to Circular Economy

We believe design and technology are critical agents for change to help create the more sustainable world of tomorrow. We are looking for highly engaged projects that are deeply committed for the long term.

Technology Embeddable

We are looking for projects and ideas that want and can embed the latest and emerging processes to make a strong contribution towards the positive impact of technology.

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DRIVEN FEATURES

DRIVEN incubation program:
knowledge + ecosystem + facilities + Reflow

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DRIVEN KNOWLEDGE

> MENTORING
One on one and group mentoring with renowned professionals, entrepreneurs and experts in the fields of advanced computational design.

> ONLINE WORKSHOPS
Access to online live workshops to upgrade your skills and broaden your vision on computation (beginners and advanced workshops available) .

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DRIVEN ECOSYSTEM

> SUPPORT
A committed DRIVEN team with diverse experience in the fields of architecture, computational design and business innovation here to support you.

> FUNDING
Guidance in tackling specific funding opportunities such as PIA FAB by BPI France.

> PARTNERS
Potential connections to partners with concrete needs to embed Circular Economy features in the industry.

> COMMUNITY
Full access to the digital infrastructure of DRIVEN, including a slack chat access to a community of experts, makers and changemakers.

> PITCH EVENTS
Pitch events organized at the end of a project’s incubation period. Large networking events organized/hosted by Volumes.

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DRIVEN FACILITIES

> COWORKING
Dedicated office space and meeting rooms to collaborate and move your project forward.

> FAB LAB
Digital fabrication space with access to a CNC machine, 3D printers, Laser cutter, and standard woodworking equipment.

> JOIN PARIS
Friendly, open, and welcoming environment in a dynamic neighborhood in Paris. Enter Volumes, one of the most influential creative hubs in the European capital of innovation.

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REFLOW PLATFORM

> RESEARCH
Access to the Reflow platform, an EU H2020 funded project about circular economy that seeks to understand and transform urban material flows.

> VISIBILITY
Get exposure through a European network of partners to test your project on a larger scale.

> RESSOURCES
Become a member of the REFLOW community and take advantage of shared resources, knowledge, and tools for circular economy to test and accelerate your project.

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Pricing

DRIVEN CONNECTED
FULL ONLINE

740 € / month

  • 1 Workshop
  • Weekly Mentorship
  • Partners connections
  • Pitch and Events
  • Research ressources
  • Online support
  • Dissemination
Get in touch
DRIVEN COWORKING
BASED IN PARIS

420 € / month

  • Office and desk
  • Makerspace
  • Digital fabrication
  • Meeting room
  • Networking events
Get in touch
DRIVEN EMBEDDED
ONLINE + ONSITE

1100 € / month

  • DRIVEN CONNECTED
  • +
  • DRIVEN COWORKING
Get in touch
DRIVEN CONNECTED
FULL ONLINE

690 € / month

  • 1 Workshop / month
  • Weekly Mentorship
  • Partners connections
  • Pitch and Events
  • Research ressources
  • Online support
  • Dissemination
Get in touch
DRIVEN COWORKING
BASED IN PARIS

390 € / month

  • Office and desk
  • Makerspace
  • Digital fabrication
  • Meeting room
  • Networking events
Get in touch
DRIVEN EMBEDDED
ONLINE + ONSITE

990 € / month

  • DRIVEN CONNECTED
  • +
  • DRIVEN COWORKING
Get in touch
DRIVEN CONNECTED
FULL ONLINE

610 € / month

  • 1 Workshop / month
  • Weekly Mentorship
  • Partners connections
  • Pitch and Events
  • Research ressources
  • Online support
  • Dissemination
Get in touch
DRIVEN COWORKING
BASED IN PARIS

350 € / month

  • Office and desk
  • Makerspace
  • Digital fabrication
  • Meeting room
  • Networking events
Get in touch
DRIVEN EMBEDDED
ONLINE + ONSITE

900 € / month

  • DRIVEN CONNECTED
  • +
  • DRIVEN COWORKING
Get in touch

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Timeline

Call for project timeline

  • JULY 1st
    Call for projects are open
  • SEPTEMBER 30th
    Call for projects closes
  • OCTOBER 15th
    Experts board meeting to select submitted projects
  • NOVEMBER 1st
    New projects are onboarded
    Online workshops and mentoring start

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Our Challenges

We are currently investigating two different challenges

Credits : WAO architecture. Photo : Aurélien Chen

CHALLENGE 01

Wood Material Use Efficiency for Temporary Constructions

In an era of resource scarcity, we think design disciplines need to respond better to the circular economy of materials, addressing material scarcity and its possible reuse as a performance parameter in the design process.

We are especially interested in exploring applications for temporary architecture, meaning, a construction whose life spans between a couple of days to a couple of years that has a significant presence in urban ecosystems.

CHALLENGE 02

Urban Metabolism and Logistics

We aim to organize a more efficient material flow system through the adoption of new digital tools and algorithms such as machine learning in order to have a more coherent, optimized, and sustainable behaviour in terms of the use of materials and energies.

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash.

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Expertise

DRIVEN areas of knowledge

We want to support the investigation of such challenges through four areas of knowledge. The alchemy of DRIVEN is created by triggering unexpected and innovative connections between these areas of knowledge and the given challenges of different sectors.

Area of knowledge 1

Computational Design

Computational design can be generically described as a design method in which the output is generated by a set of rules or an algorithm. It incorporates data streams that can vary over space and time (parameters) and use those streams to inform and organize logical processes (algorithms). These processes ultimately determine groups of multiple geometric configurations that can be explored by the designer.

  • Computational design is a subject focused on applying computational approaches to specific design tasks, being a matter of representation, form, analysis, or aesthetics. Over the last few years, the introduction of computing in the field of architecture and design triggered a radical paradigm shift: from an idea of design as mere production of forms to the elaboration of processes that can ultimately generate forms. One of the most innovative and peculiar aspects of this continuous evolution is indeed the opportunity to consider computational techniques as a process to explore multiple design possibilities.

    In brief computational design is the change in the medium of design expression from geometry to logic.


Credits: “Unconventional Toolpath”
by Co-de-iT / Andrea Graziano – Image by Andrea Graziano

Area of knowledge 2

Computational Fabrication

Digital fabrication are production processes that combine the use of digital tools (3D modeling or CAD) with CNC (computer numerical control) machines for additive and subtractive manufacturing. These processes allow the automated control of machining tools by means of a computer.

  • Digital fabrication processes have been integrated into the industry for decades but in the last few years the introduction and gaining popularity of new design techniques, such as computational and parametric design, and increased availability and affordability of new production means.

    Machines such as CNC machines and 3D printers have led designers, architects, and engineers to rethink how their work and production is conceived and organized.

    Computational design triggered the mass customization of production processes, allowing them to be integrating into the design phase and creating opportunities to finally take full advantage of automation.

    That’s what we call computational fabrication.


Credits: “Decorative wood panels” – computational design by Co-de-iT, digital fabrication by Bruno DeMasi – Photo by Bruno DeMasi

Area of knowledge 3

Data Visualization

Data Visualization is defined as a visual and interactive exploration; the process of graphical representation of information and data by encoding it into visually graphic objects. The goal is to communicate information clearly and efficiently to users and to provide an accessible way to see and understand trends, outliers, and perceive patterns in data. Data visualization allows managers and decision-makers to identify phenomena and trends that are invisible in the data upon the first analysis.

In the age of big data, data visualization skills, tools, and technologies are essential to properly analyze the massive amounts of information out there to make data-driven decisions.


Credits: Urban Layer project by Morphocode
io.morphocode.com/urban-layers

Area of knowledge 4

Machine Learning

The idea of artificial intelligence (AI) is not exactly new. Since the earliest stages of computation, people have imagined, hypothesized and worked with AI. With the increasing technological advancement, the growing computational power, our furthered understanding of the subject and access to data are pushing the possible implementations of AI in every aspect of our ‘digital life’. Exploring artificial intelligence and machine learning calls for a shift in our approach to solving design challenges. This lays the foundations for a new type of design and architecture.

How can we start implementing the use of these tools in the design and architecture fields? How can we take advantage of AI and its future developments to define a more aware and responsible design and manufacturing process?


Credits : Mateusz Zwierzycki

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Team

We are a passionate, distributed, small team across different countries

We are gathering a distributed team of experts in computational design, circular economy, and business innovation. We are professors, creative technologists, designers, researchers, entrepreneurs, engineers, makers.

Creative Director

Francesco Cingolani

Project Manager

Samantha Melnyk

Program Curator

Andrea Graziano

Advisory Board

Aldo Sollazzo


Early Stage Entrepreneurship for a Circular Economy.


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