In 2017, Fixfest brought together over 200 volunteer repairers and tinkerers, activists, policy-makers, thinkers, and companies from all over the world in the name of taking greater care of the things we own – and better products.
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Electronique et technologies de l'information
On 5 July a a survey on consumer attitudes to reuse and recycling of electronic and food products was launched in the framework of the EU funded project CIRC4life.
The EU faces multiple challenges (climate crisis, environmental disasters, a lack of competitiveness, falling behind in the digital race, etc.) that it will need to address if it is to ensure long-term sustainable prosperity for European citizens. At the same time, there are two ongoing transitions – the creation of a circular economy and the digital transformation – that could provide the means to address these challenges, if they are managed well.
As the EU and national policymakers are making significant efforts to promote a circular economy on the one hand and a digital economy on the other, Annika Hedberg and Stefan Šipka, together with Johan Bjerkem, argue that it is time to align the agendas as a means to achieve greater sustainability and competitiveness.
- demonstrates what digitalisation means in the context of a circular economy;
- considers what a greater focus on sustainability would mean for the digital transition;
- examines the role of the EU policy framework, tools and initiatives in steering a (digital) transition towards a (digital) circular economy and makes recommendations for EU institutions for the next five year.
It suggests that the EU must:
- think systemically, define a vision and act;
- provide an adequate governance framework and economic incentives for a (digital) transition to a (digital) circular economy;
- encourage collaboration across European society and economy as well as globally, and empower its citizens to contribute to the transition.
This Discussion Paper builds on the findings of the EPC’s "Digital Roadmap for a Circular Economy" project of 2017-19 and paves the way for a more extensive final study, scheduled to be published in the late autumn of 2019.
The project has been supported by Aalto University and the Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke) (members of Helsinki EU Office), Central Denmark region, Climate-KIC, the Estonian Ministry of the Environment, Estonian Environment Investment Centre, HP, Orgalim, the province of Limburg, UL, Fondazione Cariplo and Cariplo Factory.
RREUSE, the European network of social enterprises active in re-use, repair and recycling, is organising its third annual conference, in collaboration with the Spanish social enterprise network AERESS and Traperos de Emaús Navarra. This unique event will focus on strategies supporting longer-lasting products through re-use and repair that create local inclusive jobs, provide green products and services and contribute positively to well-being in our society.
The call for interest to become a club member of the Consumer Insight Action Panel on circular economy is now open – express your interest today!
The Danube goes Circular - Transnational Strategy to Accelerate Transition Towards a Circular Economy in the Danube Region
The Danube goes Circular - Transnational Strategy to Accelerate Transition Towards a Circular Economy in the Danube Region
One of the Interreg DTP MOVECO (Mobilizing Institutional Learning for Better Exploitation of Research and Innovation for the Circular Economy) project results is the Transnational Strategy to accelerate transition towards a circular economy in the Danube region.
Be transnational – reducing disparities within the Danube Region can only happen through cooperation, capacity building and knowledge exchange across borders. This holds also true for the implementation of the circular economy to make the Danube Region, as a resource poor region, less dependent on imported primary resources.
MOVECO identified key challenges with regard to the transition towards a circular economy and offers recommendations for progress. The strategy further provides the reader with many good practice examples and possibilities to raise awareness for circular economy.
Regular updates on the MOVECO project can be found on this page.
These factsheets outline circular economy opportunities to design out urban waste and pollution, ensure products and materials maintain their value, and regenerate the natural systems in our cities.
Easy-to-reference, the factsheets are a collation of research and case examples that answer some of the most prevalent questions around what circular economy can bring to cities:
- Why is change in cities needed?
- What circular economy opportunities address key urban system issues?
- What can urban policymakers do to harness circular economy opportunities?
- What are the potential economic, social, and environmental benefits of these opportunities?
The whole collection of factsheets, by system and phase, is available on the Ellen Mac Arthur Foundation website.
The Consumer Insight Action Panel is a two-year initiative jointly set up by the CSCP and Sitra as part of their contribution to the ECESP.
Its objective is to translate consumer needs and behavioural knowledge into impact-oriented activities, initiatives and recommendations to support policy makers, business and civil society in enabling consumer-relevant circular economy strategies.
C-SERVEES is a network aiming at activating Circular Services in the Electric and Electronic Sector through the development, testing, validation and transfer of new circular economic business models based on systemic eco-innovative services that include:
- eco-leasing of electrical and electronic equipment (EEE),
- product customization,
- improved management of waste of electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE),
- and ICT services to support the other eco-services.
ICT tools (relying on QR codes) will be developed as the driver of the proposed eco-innovative services to take full advantage of the potential and synergies of two major revolutions of our time: the circular economy and the Industry 4.0.
C-SERVEES will contribute to transform the E&E sector into circular and 4.0, raising new opportunities for end-users (such as their involvement in design or the access to a product as a service) and for social and solidarity economy (conducted by NGOs employing people at risk of social exclusion to repair and prepare WEEE for re-use). The techno-economic, environmental and social viability of the new circular economy business models will be validated through demonstrations dealing with four target products: washing machines, toner cartridges, telecom equipment and TVs.
C-SERVEES is a European project that aims to boost a resource-efficient circular economy in the electrical and electronic (E&E) sector through the development, testing, validation and transfer of new circular economic business models based on systemic eco-innovative services.
The ReWeee Project aims to prevent the creation of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) and to demonstrate that WEEE can be efficiently sorted and re-used.
Encourage individuals and organizations to contribute to a more sustainable use of electronics by sharing tips and inspiring others to re-use products with the hashtag #CircularElectronicsDay!
Green Group Holding: integrated waste management solutions for six main waste streams associated with households and SMEs (WEEE, plastics, PET, glass, lighting bulbs, cardboard) are now available in Romania as a pioneer development for South Eastern Europe via a private investment starting back in 2012.
Commown is a French cooperative that offers 'Hardware as as Service (HaaS)' for Fairphones and personal computers.
Ecotrel is the waste electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) recycling association for all of Luxembourg which has recently launched a "circularity and solidarity cluster" of business and social enterprises. These take back WEEE in order to re-use, disassemble or recycle it, and also to delete the personal data still stored in electronic waste.
G-STIC 2018 builds onto the key findings of G-STIC 2017, which demonstrate that a transition to a new industry framework requires a circular economy approach that is enabled by smart technologies.
CIRCULAR BRANDS is a pioneering program designed to empower the top brands in NL to make circular brand and business innovation reality. Register for the next workshop in Amsterdam on September 20th - there's place for 6 more brand teams to join and accelerate their transformation in becoming circular brand leaders, creating business growth and positive impact by driving the circular economy culture.
The Fairphone 3, launched in 2019, is one of the first modular smartphones, with components designed for longer use first and refurbishment when they finally break down.
The Upper Autrian Cleantech-Cluster networks all actors from the resource supplier, to the manufacturer, industrial researcher, to mechanical engineers, recyclers, and disposers in order to find joint solutions and develop new technologies. We cooperate with our 10 cluster initiatives in the Upper Austrian business support agency and 2000 partner companies, whose activities range from plastics, to automotive, furniture and wood construction, food, medical technology, mechatronics, IT, logistics, and HR, In order to support projects for SMEs in particular, the cluster also supports EU funding applications, thus offering its partners an internationally mature circular economy toolbox.
THEMES and EXPERTISE in the network:
- Material efficiency in production
- Circular design
- Business Models
- Initial and continuing education
- Cross-sector networking with researchers, companies, associations (regional, national, international)
- Project development
- Project Management
- Process support through conception, moderation of workshops, work meetings, events
- Funding advice
The study analysed the economic effects of the transposition of Directive 1999/44/EC concerning warranty rights, which had to be transposed into national law by January 2002. A number of publications had suggested that strengthening warranty rights for consumer goods as foreseen in the directive could increase the price level of these goods, possibly resulting in a reduced purchases. The study addressed both questions by analysing data from several EU countries. The first question was addressed by analysing inflation rates of general prices and of prices for the consumer goods affected by the directive in the time period 1998 until 2002. The second question was analysed by looking at the share of consumers who used online consumer-to-consumer markets, which were not covered by the warranty rights foreseen in the directive.
The comparison of inflation rates for consumer goods showed that inflation rates for consumer goods were below the general inflation rate between 1998 and 2004. Therefore, between 1998 and 2004 prices for the different groups of consumer goods covered by the directive did not increase but actually appear to have decreased slightly. This effect has been found for all countries analysed with no significant differences between countries transposing the minimum standards and those that went beyond. The second part of the analysis addressed the question if a developed market for online consumer-to-consumer selling of goods exists, for which the new seller's warranties weren't valid. In case of price increases for business-to-consumer markets – which have not been found in the first part of the analysis – part of the transactions could be transferred to these markets. The analysis showed that the vast majority of consumers in Western European countries used the internet regularly to purchase goods, including the online-platform Ebay. In case of increasing prices for consumer goods because of strengthened warranty rights, part of the transactions would move to online consumer-to-consumer markets rather than resulting in an overall decline of consumer goods purchases. The general conclusion was that over the analysed time period no negative impact of strengthened warranty rights on the price level of consumer goods could be found.
The Brussels Regional Programme for Circular Economy (BRPCE) is an integrated strategy involving 111 measures aimed at delivering circular patterns at the city level. The main objectives of the BPRCE are:
- to transform environmental objectives into economic opportunities
- to anchor economic activities within Brussels’ borders, maximising resource circularity and boosting entrepreneurship, and
- to create new employment opportunities.
For the past 2 years, the CIRCULAR IMPACTS project has been collecting evindence on the impacts of moving towards a Circular Economy in Europe. On September 5th the project team will present its final report at an afternoon conference in Brussels with live feedback from the European Commission, whom these assessments aim to help in discussions with member states and civil society on progress in this field.