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Participants: Mundano (M), Jutta Treviranus (JT), Dana Ayotte (DA), Michelle D’Souza (MD), Trebor Scholz (TS), Michael McHugh (MM)


To clarify terms:

Cataki is the name of the app

Mundano is the founder’s (Thiago) artistic name

Catadores is the term for garbage pickers

Pimp My Carroca is the NGO project founded by Mundano in 2012 to help bring visibility to the issue of recycling through the work of catadores unrecognized by public authorities and population.


The work with catadores and an application began in earnest about 6 years ago; to create better carts, to make the work safer, to provide better security, to integrate art/artists into the work;

Other information:

Today approximately only 3% of Brazil’s solid waste is recycled, from this number, 90% is collected by catadores in the informal market. Cataki is the app that was launched 18 months ago, now servicing over 600 registered catadores in 150 cities. This work is concentrated in Sao Paulo and another city in the north (name not decipherable). Other context for Brazil: 93% of garbage pickers are autonomous selling to junkyards, the other 7% are well organized into cooperatives.

Currently, the user is encouraged to pay for the service, it’s not mandatory. But we want to change that so the industry pays for the service, in keeping with governmental regulations in other sectors and other countries that demand full cost recovery of products. Users should not have to pay for the economic consequences of products produced by the industry as a whole. We are looking at ways of having new vehicles and putting pressure on the government and industries to achieve this.

But this work is further down the line. Right now, we need a better app. We want better payments for workers and an app that facilitates that.

This work also connects to other garbage pickers around South America and the globe. We have worked with garbage pickers in 13 other countries and have been introduced to many by the Oak Foundation and the Brazilian Social Innovation Initiative. Scale potential is very high.

We are well known in Brazil. Visibility is strong. We need the technical support now to pay and organize the catadores as a cooperative.

IDRC team:

The best thing we can do now is for you to prioritize the most important things you need in a platform. Provided overview of co-design process.


We need to strengthen not just the user’s version of the app, but also the catadores version of the app, so that they can register more information. We would like to push really hard on this development part. And we need a developer/designer based in Brazil to help facilitate that. This will give us a better user experience and a way to give money directly to the catadores.

TS: This data collected from catadores can then be sold too. Look at for example of how this is done with medical data.


We can begin the development process now as we also look for a Brazil based coder/developer.

Next steps:

  • Mundano + Dana to connect: M to send screenshots of apps and prioritized list of what the needs are to DA

  • Mundano + IDRC to determine how is this going to work on a weekly basis? M: Can we setup regular check-ins?

  • JT to follow-up with Oak Foundation for development person coding at Cataki office who can do the local development; this person would be based in Sao Paulo

  • TS and MM to follow-up on connecting Cataki to Brazilian Co-op movement organizations and leadership; 2 meetings this month; will connect M to them as soon as we meet

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