It gives Circular Plastics lector Dr Jan Jager great satisfaction when he sees a newly developed product or process applied in the work field. Certainly if it eventually leads to greater employment. The ultimate goal of his research is to create a circular economy in which waste no longer exists.

I am a chemist, and between 1987 and 2008 I worked at chemical firms Akzo Nobel/Acordis and Diolen Industrial Fibers (DIF). My work there included Research & Development and Quality Assurance. After that, I helped to set up the API Institute, a research institute for applied polymer research. Together with my fellow lector Rudy Folkersma , I am now lector in Circular Plastics at NHL University of Applied Sciences and lector in Sustainable Plastics at Stenden University of Applied Sciences.”

“My most important research subject is the sustainable use of plastics. This can on the one hand be through developing and applying bio-based and/or biodegradable plastics or, on the other hand, through the re-use of plastic products. Therefore, recycling or upcycling. Our ultimate goal is a transition from a linear economy ('take - make - dispose') to a circular economy in which waste no longer exists.”

Close involvement of education

“Practice-based research is carried out mostly in consultation with the business sector. It gives me great satisfaction to see a newly developed product or process being applied in practice and leading to greater employment. Practice-based research also provides the step towards new products and processes. For this it is necessary that we involve education closely with these new developments: in the existing curriculum or in the form of, for example, minors.”


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