SVT News broadcasted a segment about the disruptive technology of drawing out textile fiber from old cotton clothes on Sunday 21/10/12.
A lot of the clothes we consumers buy end up in the trash. It has come to the point where the clothing industry sees a pending shortage of textile fiber. The scientists and industry members call it the peak cotton.
In this context, Swedish scientists have developed a new method for extracting new thread from the cotton in old clothes. If everything goes according to plan there will be a velour thread factory on Wargön outside Trollhättan and stakeholders throughout the value chain have been brought together to develop the site.
The importance of industrial drivers
This is an example of how disruptive technologies can have an instant impact on place development. A key question for Place Managers is what will be the next disruptive technology and not just an incremental change.
For this to happen it is important that the Place Manager is open minded and listens to the experts dealing with disruptive technologies, that they are prepared to exploit the new opportunities and have the drive to invite stakeholders in the process of creating a new hub for the technology.
For Wargön, this has resulted in 500 new jobs and a lot of media coverage for the region.
Christer Asplund and Magnus Fransson at Bearing Consulting have been working on the Wargön-project for little more than a year, involving several stakeholders that complement each other in building the factory.
It is often the case that Bearing acts as a catalyst in these kinds of projects where Bearing invites experts, stakeholders and entrepreneurs with interest in creating a show case for the market.
A quote from the book Place Management – New Roles for Place Managers in Rebuilding European Wealth:
All the disruptive technologies in history have some place of origin. They are born somewhere, prototypes are made somewhere, demonstrated in another place and perhaps manufactured somewhere else. Intellectual property rights might have another home. Hence, behind the product one can discern a long chain of place-related opportunities whether missed or exploited.