The Transformable Intelligent Environments Laboratory (TUC TIE Lab) of the School of Architecture of the Technical University of Crete, directed by Professor and Vice Rector Konstantinos-Alketas Oungrinis, is dedicated to the development of new practices that use design thinking and technology as catalysts for innovation in social applications. Throughout this creative process, the Municipality of Athens has been TUC TIE LAB’s dedicated partner. Their joint work, mainly through the “ΠΟΙΩ” (MakerSpace) Workshop of the Municipality of Athens, was recognized by the “Education Leaders Awards” initiative with three gold awards since 2018 and was recently honored again with two awards for the year 2023, 1 Gold and 1 Platinum.
The project presented by the Lab has as its starting point the aggravating footprint that the fashion industry leaves on the environment and the imperative need to convert it to good circular economy practices. In this context, TUC TIE LAB participated in the European Week of Waste Reduction (EWWR2022) in collaboration with the Alternative Waste Management Unit of the Cleanliness-Recycling Directorate of the Municipality of Athens.
A three-day festival entitled “Waste is out of fashion” was planned and implemented based on the triptych: waste reduction, product reuse and recycling. Addressed to all age groups, the three-day event took place in the Serafion of the Municipality of Athens and was structured in 13 stations with artistic installations, interactive exhibits, and experiential workshops around the creative reuse of textiles. 1.5 tons of clothes, collected in collaboration with Recycom, were used as the raw material for the implementation of the event. Over 1,400 people contributed to convert this quantity of clothes, thus leaving a very strong message for a conscious and exemplary change.
In addition, the event was selected by the Hellenic Recycling Agency to represent Greece in the EWWR2022 competition, in the “Administration/Public Authority” category, where it was selected as one of the three Finalists among 16,000 actions across Europe.
The Education Leaders Awards ceremony took place on Monday, 3 July 2023 at the Conference Center of the University of West Attica in Athens for the eighth consecutive year. The aim of the initiative is to highlight and reward educational units and activities, as well as the Educator of the Year, with the aim of upgrading the educational experience, both for students and teachers in the new digital age. More than 200 education officials, agencies, universities, and press representatives attended the award ceremony, applauding the innovation and quality of the awarded educational units and teachers’ nominations.
In total, 57 public educational units and teachers and 40 private educational units, teachers and companies were distinguished from a wide range of nominations in all award categories. The nominations that achieved the highest overall score in each pillar, receiving a Platinum award, were:
- the Primary School of Vytina (in the “Education – Distance Education” category),
- the TUC TIE Lab and the Municipality of Athens (in the “Outreach and Cooperation” category),
- the BabyEcoDesign Architectural Office for Child-Centered Design (in the “Administration, Economy and Facilities” category).
The two awards were received by the Director of the TUC TIE Lab and Vice-Rector for Research and Innovation of the Technical University of Crete, Professor Konstantinos-Alketas Oungrinis, along with the Head of the Alternative Waste Management Unit of the Cleanliness-Recycling Directorate of the Municipality of Athens, Mr. Konstantinos Georgantas.