Employees and managers in related businesses can join the network and participate in meetings to discuss the development of the circular economy and how digital technologies can be applied.
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Réseaux et plateformes de l’économie circulaire en Europe
The EU-funded DigiCirc project aims at enabling the digitalisation of the Circular Economy by building upon the innovation potential of SMEs. It accelerates innovation by identifying cutting-edge circular economy solutions and by promoting business development and start-up growth.
DigiCirc will build and coordinate an innovative network of stakeholders that will set the foundation for an open space for innovation performed through the DigiCirc accelerators.
45 circular innovations, addressing sectoral challenges and generating new value chain, will be selected through open calls in three domains:
- Circular cities
- Blue economy.
For more information on open calls (the first on Circular cities to be launched in November) and the accelerator programme click here.
In Limbo is a platform (digital website and physical warehouse) facilitating the reuse of materials within the social and cultural sectors and schools in Brussels.
It encourages exchange and mutual aid within these sectors, as well as boosting recycling, reducing landfill costs and enabling organisations with limited resources to obtain reusable materials. Following the principles of circularity and sharing, all partners are invited to give and receive materials for free.
In Limbo is open only to registered partners which must be formal or informal non-profit associations or collectives, specifically social, cultural and artistic organisations, schools and temporary projects in Brussels. However, In Limbo accepts donations from all types of organisations.
Watch a video on In Limbo
As a part of the circular economy, Eco-design is a way for enterprises to reduce the impacts of their products or services at each step of their life cycle.
Since 2012, UCM help SMEs to integrate this approach in order to make their business less impacting, but also compatible with the evolution of the reglementation, cost-effective and connected to the new customers markets.
You want to improve your life cycle management? Take opportunities in the Circular economy? Or even change your business model? Don’t hesitate to make your first step with us. We propose short and mid-term supports, customs tools and seminars, and grant research for circular projects.
The ECO.NOMIA portal, created in 2016, is one of the components of the Portuguese Action Plan for Circular Economy (2017), adopting the role of a knowledge-sharing space. It is a one-stop-shop for all things circular, in Portuguese, aimed at citizens, companies and investors. Not only does it explain the principles, advantages and opportunities of the circular economy, it also provides examples and information on financing, learning opportunities and national and international events.
The European Sustainable Business Federation Ecopreneur.eu features six national associations with 3000 sustainable companies - mostly SMEs.
A member of the ECESP Coordination Group, Ecopreneur.eu is the international business organisation in Brussels committed to ambitious measures, rules and regulations for a low-carbon circular economy. Ecopreneur.eu advocates a new economic framework by bringing concrete experience from pioneering companies into the political debate, showing best practice examples and advocating the needs of green SMEs in a credible way.
Enea has designed the first Italian industrial symbiosis platform, as a tool to facilitate the process.
The ENEA methodology is based on a "horizontal" network approach, with the aim of creating synergies and closing the loop between supply and demand for various resources.
The Platform is based on:
- an expert structure that identifies possible solutions of industrial symbiosis
- a complex information structure, also georeferenced, which describes the territory, its structures, the interlocutors and available resources
- a network that connects different interlocutors
- a web interface.
Among other activities and services, Symbiosis is able to send to to each company individual reports containing information on potential matches of interest. It is also developing operating manuals for industrial symbiosis.
The European Resource Efficiency Knowledge Centre (EREK for short) is here to help European companies, especially SMEs, save energy, material and water costs. We provide tools, information and business opportunities that show you new and better ways to be resource efficient and benefit from circular economy business models which turn waste into an asset. EREK also supports national, regional and local organisations across Europe that work with SMEs to improve their environmental performance, helping them to become more resource efficient.
SMEs can get the following benefits thanks to EREK’s tools and services:
- Access to knowledge on best available technologies and business models
- Better control of energy, water and material costs
- Compliance checks for upcoming regulations
- Become less dependent on suppliers
- Demonstrate return on investment when adopting resource efficient measures Information on funding sources and technology providers
- Help building a green image which enables the targeting of new customer segments
EREK offers the following to SME intermediaries:
- Tools and instruments for businesses to assess their saving potentials
- Access to top international knowledge, technical expertise and practices on resource efficiency
- Capacity-building workshops and networking events Online training opportunities to learn from resource efficiency experts
- Overview of relevant support programmes available on European, national and regional levels
- Updates on professional events within the community
Concrete activities include:
- European Resource Efficiency Self-Assessment Tool for SMEs
- Catalogue of Resource Efficiency Improvement Measures
- European Resource Efficiency Information Database
- Online EREK platform
- Structured knowledge on resource efficiency best practices
- News, trends, and information on support programmes
- Database and managed European network of the national and regional organisation providing support to SMEs in resource efficiency measures
- Capacity-building and training workshops
- Knowledge resources, expertise and sharing
EREK is an initiative of the European Commission and is implemented by a consortium of organisations including Technopolis Group, VDI Zentrum Ressourceneffizienz (DE), WRAP (UK), Motiva (FI), Enviros (CZ), WAAT and Arctik (BE).
The Communication on Circular Economy, adopted in 2015, calls on the Commission to establish a Platform dedicated to food waste prevention. Thus the EU Platform on Food Losses and Food Waste (FLW) was established in 2016, as an informal European Commission expert group bringing together EU institutions, international organisations, experts from Member States and actors in the food value chain including consumer and other non-governmental organisations.
The Platform aids the Commission in identifying and prioritising actions to be taken at EU level in order to prevent food losses and food waste and supports all actors in identifying and implementing appropriate actions to take at national, regional and local levels. Its work is of a horizontal nature, aiming to identify opportunities for food waste prevention across the food production and consumption chain and facilitate inter-sector cooperation.
The most recent estimates of European food waste levels (FUSIONS, 2016) reveal that 70% of EU food waste arises in the household, food service and retail sectors, with production and processing sectors contributing the remaining 30%. The EU and Member States are committed to meeting Sustainable Development Goal 12.3, adopted in September 2015, which targets to halve per capita food waste at the retail and consumer level by 2030 and reduce food losses along the food production and supply chains.
All relevant documents related to the work of the Platform (such as agendas, minutes and participants' submissions) can be found on the Commission's dedicated food waste website
EuroCommerce is the principal European organisation representing the retail and wholesale sector. It embraces national associations in 31 countries and 5.4 million companies, both leading global players such as Carrefour, Ikea, Metro and Tesco, and many small businesses.
The circular economy is an opportunity for retail and wholesale as it allows the sector to rethink business models, offer alternative products and support a more sustainable lifestyle. It is a two-way approach both responding and leading to societal change. Indeed, beyond the increasing demand by consumers and regulators to offer more sustainable alternatives, the circular economy is an opportunity to rethink the way we produce, manufacture, sell, use and discard our products