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We knew that informing our community about the issues we face every day and how synthetic biology is a powerful tool able to fix them wouldn’t be enough. That is why we organized our Human Practice in an integrated feedback system: First we approached stakeholders, professionals, and the general community with the purpose of obtaining and analyzing data to assess the severity of the problem. After this, we involved our community in different events aimed to create consciousness about e-waste pollution and the dreadful consequences of incorrect e-waste disposal. We also wanted to inform as much people as we could about the different ways in which they could participate and come up with solutions to help us improve our current situation. Throughout this process, our experience allowed us to evaluate and reshape our project according to society’s needs.
The proximity we had with our community stood out in our human practices and more importantly, in the development and direction that our project took. This aspect is reflected in our numerous events, evidence we saw on the enormous pile of e-waste we collected during four days, weighing almost a ton! We didn’t just collect electronics, but made the decision to go a step further. We sent this huge amount of e-waste to CVR, a certified recycling company, where it could be treated correctly. Later CVR agreed to provide us with the shredded e-waste for our project. This way, the residues were the same we collected and would be using in the future to validate and test our process.
If you want to read more about the events that fulfill the gold medal requirements, don’t be a shy judge and take a look: