Innovation is not a big issue in the paper industry

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RISI recently pub­lished their list of the top 50 movers and shakers of the paper industry. The list com­prises the usu­al sus­pects, but also a few amus­ing sur­prises. No. 5 on the list is Steve Jobs, since Apple’s products have changed con­sumer beha­vi­or faster than any oth­er. The only innov­at­or from with­in the paper industry is Mikael Lind­ström of Innven­tia at No. 42.

If there is one thing the pulp and paper industry needs in the 21st cen­tury, it is innov­a­tion. It must find new ways and new products to make — not just simply turn­ing pulp into the com­mod­ity of paper.
For­tu­nately there are some very able and cre­at­ive brains on the case. One of them is Mikael Lind­ström, adjunct pro­fess­or, and research man­ager at Sweden’s Innven­tia, a research insti­tute work­ing for the pulp, paper and pack­aging indus­tries. Since 1998, Lind­ström has been the seni­or research man­ager, for the New Mater­i­als and Com­pos­ites divi­sion as well as a “prin­cip­al invest­ig­at­or” for bio­mi­met­ic fiber engin­eer­ing.
Lind­ström has developed a concept for integ­rated mater­i­als — Hier­arch­ic Design — using pulp as one of the major ingredi­ents which has been presen­ted both at sci­entif­ic con­fer­ences and twice dur­ing the pres­ti­gi­ous Design Week in Mil­an. This included mar­ket pulp pro­du­cer Södra’s Paru­pu chil­dren’s chair and a design­er lamp, both made out of DuraPulp. The lamp has very recently won Sweden’s biggest and most pres­ti­gi­ous design prize, Design S. The bi-annu­al award is gran­ted by the Swedish Design Asso­ci­ation.
Mikael Lind­ström, Innven­tia innov­at­or

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