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Michael Braungart

Founder and Scientific Director Hamburger Umweltinstitut e.V.


Environment & Energy





Professor Dr. Michael Braungart is the founder and scientific CEO of EPEA Internationale Umweltforschung GmbH, an international environmental research, and consulting institute headquartered in Hamburg. He is also the co-founder and scientific director of McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry (MBDC) in Charlottesville, Virginia (USA), co-founder and scientific manager of Hamburger Umweltinstitut (HUI) (a non-profit research center) as well as director of Braungart Consulting in Hamburg. He developed the Cradle to Cradle® concept under the name "Intelligent Products System" (IPS).

Braungart studied Chemistry and Process Engineering, among others at Konstanz, Darmstadt, Hannover, and Zurich Universities. In the 1980s, he dedicated his work to the environmental organization Greenpeace and beginning in 1982 helped to establish the chemistry section of Greenpeace International, which he took over in 1985. In the same year he received his Ph.D. from the University of Hannover's chemistry department. In order to develop solutions for complex environmental problems, EPEA was established by Greenpeace in 1987. Ever since, Braungart has been involved with research and consultancy for eco-effective products i.e. products and production processes in a loop, not only harmless to man or nature, but beneficial.

In 1994, Michael Braungart became professor of Process Engineering at Leuphana University of Lüneburg (Germany) and now holds the chair for Cradle to Cradle® & Eco-Efficacy. Since the fall of 2008 he also lectures at Erasmus University Rotterdam: he initially held the Cradle to Cradle® chair position at the Dutch Research Institute for Transitions (DRIFT), but as of 2011 he holds the newly-created academic chair for Cradle to Cradle® Innovation & Quality at the Rotterdam School of Management (RSM). Furthermore, Braungart is professor at the chair for Cradle to Cradle® Design at the University of Twente in Enschede (Netherlands).

Michael Braungart has received a number of awards for his scientific achievements.


  • Climate Protection
  • Cradle to Cradle
  • Upcycling


  • The Next Industrial Revolution: The Cradle-to-Cradle-Community, 2013
  • Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, 2003
  • Hannover Principles of Design: Design for Sustainability, 1997