previous day
next day
all days

View: session overviewtalk overview

09:00-10:30 Session Plenary 2: Plenary Session
Spiros Papaefthimiou (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
Location: Room 1
Sepideh Jafarzadeh (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)
Ianna R. Moreira-Dantas (University of Goettingen, Germany)
Marta Pujol Martin (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)
Maitri Thakur (SINTEF Ocean, Norway)
Juan Armando Torres-Munguía (University of Goettingen, Germany)
Inma Martínez-Zarzoso (University Jaume I and University of Goettingen, Spain)
Towards Food Supply Chain Decarbonisation: Challenges of the European Policies and Stakeholders’ Initiatives

ABSTRACT. Climate change is one of the most pressing challenges of the 21st century (König & Araújo-Soares, 2021), and urgent interventions are required to avoid the 1.5˚C threshold established by the Paris Agreement (United Nations, 2015). Such interventions represent a set of actions to achieve net zero emissions across productive sectors by 2050. The food sector deserves special attention not only for being essential to feed the world population, but also because food systems are estimated to contribute to a third of anthropogenic global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (Crippa et al., 2021). With the current population and economic growth trends, food systems must go through pivotal modifications to ensure food security while reducing environmental impacts (Lipper et al., 2020). In Europe, the food industry is a central economic sector (Wijnands et al., 2007) with several interlinked actors that produce, add value and supply food to final consumers (Timmermans et al., 2014). Thus, addressing sustainability in the food sector requires integrated approaches examining the stakeholders involved in the entire food supply chain (FSC) within the farm gate and beyond (Camanzi et al., 2017). The Horizon 2020 ENOUGH project (https://enough-emissions.eu/) aims at quantifying GHG emissions at the different stages of the FSC and evaluating the potential and effectiveness of alternative decarbonisation strategies. As part of it, the first task consists of mapping European (i) policies and regulations, (ii) standards and eco-labels, (iii) consumer initiatives, (iv) industry initiatives, and (v) financial mechanisms that aim at decarbonizing the European FSC. In the first phase, European Union (EU) level initiatives are collected and supplemented by some national and regional initiatives. The mapped initiatives directly or indirectly affect decarbonisation, which may be their main goal or part of a set of goals. The website of the project lists the mapped initiatives and provides more details on them, while in the following we provide an overview of the main findings. A categorization framework (Figure 1) is developed to organize and analyze the mapped data. The categorization aims to obtain information related to the context of the mapped policies, regulations, standards, eco-labels, initiatives and financial mechanisms. This is achieved by identifying their final users, timeframe and the stage in the FSC and food sector that they apply to. Additionally, technical aspects related to decarbonization were also considered by specifying initiatives’ scope, main goal, and type of action. In total, (i) 38 policies and regulations, (ii) 20 standards and eco-labels, (iii) 13 consumer initiatives, (iv) 18 industrial initiatives, and (v) 27 European financial mechanisms at the EU level are reviewed and mapped. Figure 1. Categorisation framework Focusing on the FSC, the findings indicate that most initiatives require the interaction of several actors and categories. For instance, consumer and industry initiatives depend on financial means, which must be provided either by public or private financial sectors. In addition, the regulatory framework and policy initiatives serve as a “push factor” to make emission reductions along FSCs compulsory. In this regard, the European Green Deal (EGD) and the subsequent European Climate Law offer an appropriate framework for achieving net zero emissions by 2050. Similarly, the future implementation of the Farm to Fork Strategy (F2F) is expected to resolve several issues related to food systems. In line with political and scientific debates, this study acknowledges the importance of bringing together public bodies, companies, NGOs, and civil society to design sustainable solutions. The limitations of this compilation of stakeholders’ initiatives are as follows: Firstly, they are limited to European countries and do not cover emerging and low-income economies, which could be addressed in future research. Secondly, the review covers initiatives until 2021; therefore, a continuous update of the systematic review would be beneficial. The main policy recommendations that could be inferred from the comprehensive revision of the past and ongoing initiatives are threefold: First, European stakeholders have been active, especially with regard to reducing food waste in production and consumption systems and promoting awareness regarding food sustainability to a wider outreach. Adapting FSC stages in relation to sustainability management, applying and informing sustainability measures at the firm level, and promoting sustainable public procurement require further actions. Second, the initiatives revised indicate that there is already a high engagement at production and consumption stages, paving the road towards decarbonization. Nevertheless, actions to achieve sustainable food processing, packaging, and distribution demand additional initiatives, where the potential for reducing emissions is still untapped. Third, targets specifically related to broader governmental approaches depend on a comprehensive national framework, able to meet sustainable food production and consumption in accordance with international objectives. In this regard, Europe is still far from the full implementation of a detailed framework and criteria to meet these targets. Although the F2F framework seems to suit this purpose, targets are under evaluation and remain as a set of general suggestions rather than concrete proposals. Therefore, a timely and clear implementation pathway is desirable to achieve the main goals.

Constantin Zopounidis (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
Performance evaluation of companies based on ESG criteria: a multicriteria approach
10:30-11:00Coffee Break
11:00-13:00 Session 4A: Circular economy transition - organized in cooperation with ProCEedS, ReTraCE and Co2nstruct
Andrea Genovese (The University of Sheffield, UK)
Location: Room 1
Dilay Celebi (South East European Research Centre, Greece)
Panayiotis Ketikidis (South East European Research Centre, Greece)
A Horizon Scanning Exercise for a Just Transition to Circular Economy

ABSTRACT. A just transition to a Circular Economy (CE) is the process of moving to a more sustainable and equitable economic system that takes into account the needs and rights of all stakeholders. To ensure that the transition to a CE is socially responsible, inclusive, anticipatory, and reflexive, it is essential to take the needs and values of all stakeholders into account. The objective of this study is to prepare a preliminary version of a ‘skeleton of future images’ in transition to a just CE and to reflect about the technology and political actions that should be implemented to achieve them in a specific national context. It mainly builds on the findings of the Thessaloniki workshop conducted in March 2023, as one of the series of five national workshops organised by the JUST2CE project. The workshop brought together a set of regional experts in Circular Economy from different stakeholder groups in order to discuss the key factors that could play a decisive role in the transition to a just Circular Economy in the region.

Piotr C. Sosnowski (University of Lodz, Poland)
Contract management in used cooking oil supply chain – comparative analysis of Italian and Polish markets

ABSTRACT. Collection and recovery of used cooking oil (UCO) is one of the examples of practical application of the concept of circular economy. One of the problems related to this kind of business activity is sourcing UCO. Contract management is one of the tools that can be used to provide the supply of UCO. The aim of this article is to identify the determinants and recommendations for contract management in UCO supply chains on the example of Polish and Italian companies.

The scientific methods used in this research are the review of the literature and the comparative market analysis. The reviewed literature is directly related to functioning of UCO collection and recovery sectors in Italy and in Poland and to contract management in this sector. The comparative market analysis is focused on Italian and Polish organisations operating in this sector.

The results concern the characteristics of market and conducting operations in the UCO collection and recovery sector in Italy and Poland, the determinants and the recommendations for contract management in the UCO supply chain.

The determinants of contract management in the UCO supply chain are mainly related to fragmentation of supply and sourcing problems. On the other hand, the recommendations are mainly related to awarding suppliers providing the highest volumes of UCO.

Ben Purvis (University of Sheffield, UK)
Tommaso Calzolari (The University of Sheffield, UK)
José Bruno Fevereiro (University of Sheffield, UK)
Andrea Genovese (The University of Sheffield, UK)
Azar Mahmoumgonbadi (The University of Sheffield, UK)
A Decision Support Tool for exploring a Just Transition to a Circular Economy

ABSTRACT. In the context of the transition towards a Circular Economy (CE), global supply chains and inter-firm relationships play a crucial role. Whilst traditional supply networks have operated in a linear manner based on the extraction of primary resources, circular supply chains demand the closing of loops, as well as integration and visibility of backward and forward flows (Bimpizas-Pinis et al. 2022). In the context of a just transition to a CE, which places emphasis on labour justice and the voice of marginalised communities (Velicu and Barca, 2020), consideration of circular supply chains raises important factors beyond merely ‘closing the loop’.

A number of online tools exist for exploring supply chains, ranging from detailed inventory tools pitched at firms in a consultancy type manner, to open source projects which focus on more abstract macro scales. D'Eusanio et al. (2019) note a lack of attention given to dimensions of social sustainability in these supply chain management tools, something which echoes the state of play in CE discourse (Calzolari et al, 2022). There is thus a gap and need for a tool which embeds elements of social and environmental justice within its framework for considering circular supply chains.

Within this work we present the draft outline of a Decision Support Tool (DST) which is intended to enable users to explore a range of phenomena related to the just transition to a CE. Currently in development, the tool is pitched towards a general user, as such, not restricted to classical C-level company management, with little prior knowledge required, but an interest in justice, supply chains, and circularity. It is intended to be a learning tool, encouraging the user to consider and explore new avenues of thinking, and we do not see it as a prescriptive tool. Following a brief review of the shortcomings of existing tools for considering elements of justice, and their reliance on quantitative indicator systems, we present a specification for our tool. We outline the tool’s components and workflow, its epistemological and axiological orientation, its use of input-output analysis, and detail several use cases for the tool.

The tool consists of four main components: a supply chain explorer, a just transition map overlay, a just transition directory, and a supply chain visibility questionnaire based on validated constructs from the literature. The supply chain explorer component centres a visual depiction of ‘typical’ global supply chains in map form. Here, the user is prompted to specify a sector and geographical location for the tool to generate a ‘typical supply chain’ based upon underlying multiregional input-output (MRIO) data, which is plotted on a global map. Influenced by qualitative mapping tools like the Global Atlas of Environmental Justice (Temper et al., 2015), ‘a just transition overlay’ highlights on this map geographical elements and signposts relating to aspects of gender, labour, and environmental justice. These signposts link to a ‘just transition directory’ that may be explored separately to the mapper, which covers core information about these justice aspects, prompting the user to consider the impacts of global supply chains more broadly. Finally, a walkthrough ‘questionnaire’ provides a series of prompts which encourage the user to consider important aspects relating to a specific supply chain they may be interested in.

As the tool itself is a work in progress, this paper aims to provide an overview of the tool, along with a critical discussion of the crucial development issues we expect to face.

Spyridon Karytsas (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving (CRES), Greece)
Olympia Polyzou (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving (CRES), Greece)
Theoni I. Oikonomou (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving (CRES), Greece)
Constantine Karytsas (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving (CRES), Greece)
Societal perspectives on CCS infrastructure: Comparative empirical results from seven European countries

ABSTRACT. Carbon capture, transport, and storage can contribute to global efforts to combat climate change. However, it remains a controversial technology that often faces public resistance to accepting specific projects. Thus, it should not be overlooked, that social acceptance of CCS (Carbon Capture and Storage) is a prerequisite for the further development and dissemination of this technology. In light of this, the MOF4AIR project -among its activities- explores this issue. The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program and gathers 14 partners from 8 countries to develop and demonstrate the performances of MOF (Metal Organic Framework)-based CO2 capture technologies in power plants and energy-intensive industries. To examine societal perspectives, a quantitative social survey focusing on the general public (performed during January-February 2022 by a surveying company; including 1775 participants from the seven MOF4AIR European countries) was performed. The study aimed to examine various CCS-related aspects, such as citizens’ knowledge, general perceptions towards CCS, and social acceptance of CCS infrastructure. In addition, the study aimed to identify the factors significantly affecting the above-mentioned aspects, while taking into consideration distinct scenarios in terms of the country (Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Norway, Turkey, the United Kingdom), infrastructure (capture, transport, and storage), acceptance dimension (general and local level), and theme-related (knowledge, perceptions, attitudes) differences. The results of the general public’s social survey indicated that statistically significant differences occur between the seven countries in the vast majority of the themes under investigation (awareness, knowledge, place attachment, positive and negative impacts, stakeholders’ trust, public engagement, justice, public acceptance), with Norway being the country differing mostly within the group of the seven countries. The overall level of CCS knowledge was rather balanced (evenly distributed above-average, and below-average knowledge), while general perceptions of CCS (in terms of how useful, valuable, and acceptable CCS is) were mainly positive. Respondents’ perceived attitudes towards CCS infrastructure on a national level were found to be rather positive. On a local level, the majority would prefer the CCS infrastructure to be located far away from their home, with the infrastructure being accepted at the closest distance being an energy-intensive industry that would capture CO2 through CCS, and the farthest being a CO2 storage facility. Hence, although respondents would welcome CCS infrastructure in their country, they would prefer the infrastructure to be located far away from their homes. CCS knowledge was found to be statistically significantly affected by gender, age, education, satisfaction with household income, prior professional experience in the sector, and environmental attitude, while perceived acceptance was found to be affected by age; self-perceived distance of residence from an industrial area; self-perceived knowledge of climate change, CO2, or CCS; attitudes towards positive and negative impacts; trust of stakeholders and institutions; procedural and distributional justice. In addition, a qualitative study focusing on CCS experts (performed during January-March 2022; including 25 experts from the seven MOF4AIR European countries) was performed. The scope of the qualitative study was to provide a set of recommendations towards social acceptance of CCS projects, which -however - should be treated with caution, as the 25 interviewees do not represent a random or representative proportion neither of the general population nor of all CCS experts. Recommendations include the importance of the previous experience of local communities in relevant projects; the different stakeholders that should be responsible for the provision of information on the risks and benefits of CCS, and the overall collaboration with local communities; the different channels of communication that could be applied; the importance of the timing of the communication actions; the role of public involvement in CCS development; the importance of the provision of compensatory benefits to local communities; the identification of the main technical and safety specifications contributing to the social acceptance of CCS projects; and the benefits that the utilization of captured CO2 could offer to the social acceptance of CCS infrastructure.

Theoni I. Oikonomou (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving, Greece)
Spyridon Karytsas (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving, Greece)
Constantine Karytsas (Center for Renewable Energy Sources and Saving, Greece)
Ana Teresa Lima (Technical University of Denmark, Denmark)
Eleni Theodoropoulou (Harokopio University of Athens, Greece)
Barriers and drivers of circular economy for climate change mitigation in the construction sector

ABSTRACT. Climate change mitigation refers to actions aimed at reducing or preventing Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions that cause anthropogenic climate change. The European Union (EU) has set the ambitious target of being climate neutral - net-zero GHG emissions- by 2050, so as to contribute to the global efforts to tackle climate change and reduce GHG emissions. To this end, Climate Change Mitigation strategies have been established. Circular Economy (CE) is considered a significant mitigation approach to achieve climate change mitigation. CE refers to the non-linear economic model, which enforces practices such as reusing, repairing, refurbishing, and recycling existing materials and products to keep materials within the economy for the maximum possible duration. CE implies that waste will itself become a resource, thus minimising the actual amount of waste. The construction sector is a significant CO2 contributor, as well as one of the world’s largest consumers of energy and raw materials and producers of waste. Thus, it is of great importance to apply CE principles in this sector. This includes practices such as the use of low-carbon materials, renovation of buildings, sharing practices, etc. However, there is evidence that there is still a long way to go to successfully apply the CE principles. The identification of barriers and drivers is an important step in order to enhance the implementation of CD measures. Barriers and drivers’ identification towards CE is a significant research topic, with a growing scientific research interest during the last years. However, there is a need for further analysis of existing barriers and drivers, as well as a connection of the potential strategies - to overcome the barriers and enhance the drivers - with empirical data, driven by qualitative and quantitative research methods. In light of this, one of the objectives of the CO2NSTRUCT: "Modelling the role of circular economy structure value chains for a carbon-neutral Europe" project is to investigate this issue. CO2NSTRUCT is a European Horizon, Research and Innovation Action (RIA) project involving seven organizations from seven countries, which started in June 2022 with a duration of four years and it is coordinated by the Technical University of Denmark (DTU). This study investigates the barriers and drivers towards the implementation of circular economy practices for climate change mitigation in the construction sector, as perceived by key stakeholders in the research, academic, industrial and policy communities. The research is conducted through a literature review. The outcome of the study has revealed that there is a variety of factors influencing the implementation of CE. The barriers can be classified into categories, such as knowledge, financial, management, regulatory, technical and technological barriers. For each barrier’s category, specific strategies are suggested. The results of the research will be used to structure an interview protocol addressing key stakeholders through at least 25 interviews with EU and national associations and key stakeholders in the policy and the construction sector, including citizens’ unions and building owners. Stakeholders will be interviewed about their perception of circular economy construction materials, as well as the existing barriers and drivers towards CE in the construction sector.

Davide Aloini (University of Pisa, Italy)
Ana Teresa Lima (Technical University of Denmark, Denmark)
Safaa Mabroum (University of Pisa, Italy)
Giammarco Montalbano (University of Pisa, Italy)
Pierluigi Zerbino (University of Pisa, Italy)
Augmenting climate mitigation models for Circular Economy policymaking: a Supply Chain approach
PRESENTER: Safaa Mabroum

ABSTRACT. The Circular Economy (CE) is gaining momentum as a solution to the climate crisis, particularly in the Construction sector, which is resource-intensive and responsible for approximately 40% of energy consumption and 36% of CO2 emissions in the EU. The construction of infrastructures consumes 42.4 Gt resources annually, which account for 50% of global material consumption. Furthermore, it is the cause of 20% of global emissions with more than 9 Gt of CO2 eq. [1]. The production of construction materials represents about 40% of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions resulting from total infrastructure building [2]. The Construction sector involves the production of several carbon-intensive materials such as cement, structural steel, bricks, glass, and insulation (Fig. 1). Moreover, the global annual extraction of raw material will triple by 2050 causing the loss of 90% of biodiversity resulting from resource extraction and processing operations [3]. Therefore, policymakers need reliable forecasts of medium and long-term CE environmental impacts at a macro level to address climate mitigation pathways in this sector towards climate neutrality. However, current tools used for this purpose (e.g., energy-climate mitigation models) are generally unable to assess potential emission savings from CE measures, such as product lifetime extension, sharing models, and feedback loops. The main reason is that they model GHG emissions without adequately accounting for materials' circularity and considering direct emissions from upstream and downstream supply chains, as well as indirect emissions from cross-sector externalities. Moreover, their limited coverage of basic industries’ value chains hinders the appropriate assessment of the environmental impact of raw material extraction and usage in both the current linear patterns of economic activity and possible CE scenarios. To cope with these shortcomings, it is necessary to extend extant energy-climate mitigation models with fine-grained Supply Chain models covering the main material and energy flows and basic industries involved in the Construction sector. However, such industry-focused supply chains are still missing. With this aim, this paper presents the preliminary results of the Supply Chain mapping activity of the six most carbon-intensive construction materials: wood, steel, bricks, flat glass, insulation, and cement. This work is part of CO2NSTRUCT, a new Horizon Europe project that aims to delineate a “circular climate mitigation” framework to augment TIMES models – a group of widely known energy-climate mitigation models – with CE measures to support policymakers in singling out the best climate mitigation pathways to achieve carbon neutrality in the construction sector and inform managers and decision-makers accordingly.

11:00-13:00 Session 4B: Circular business models
Rebecca Earley (University of the Arts London, UK)
Location: Room 2
Simon Harreither (Vienna University of Technology / EFS Consulting GesmbH, Austria)
Fabian Holly (Vienna University of Technology / Fraunhofer Austria Research GmbH, Austria)
Günther Kolar (EFS Consulting GesmbH, Austria)
Constantin Magos (EFS Consulting GesmbH, Austria)
Sebastian Schlund (Vienna University of Technology / Fraunhofer Austria Research GmbH, Austria)
Evaluation of Circular Business Models: Using a multi criteria decision analysis for decision support in selecting Circular Business Models for SMEs.
PRESENTER: Simon Harreither

ABSTRACT. Most companies are currently faced with the question which circular business models (CBMs) are best suited for their organization to achieve the highest possible circularity of their resources. Several decision support approaches have already been developed in the relevant literature to facilitate the transition to the Circular Economy (CE). However, these studies only provide general statements on the selection of CBMs and make few references to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the manufacturing industry, whose business models as well as strategic decisions are influenced by a multitude of specific factors and requirements. Considering the complexity of the decision problem, SMEs need a thorough approach to conquer this challenge. To fill this research gap, the main objective of this study is to develop a decision support approach for SMEs in machinery, automotive and plant engineering in industrialized countries. The focus is to enable SMEs to choose the most appropriate CBM for their organization. Based on a literature review, the five most frequently mentioned CBMs and 12 general success factors (SFs) have been identified and evaluated using a multi criteria decision analysis method (MCDA) called Fuzzy PROMETHEE. The results are the rankings of the SFs and the CBMs. From the ranking of the SFs it can be derived, that the most important factors for the successful development and implementation of CBMs are primarily aspects such as training, education and motivation, followed by cooperation and collaboration with all internal and external stakeholders and the separate allocation of internal financial resources. According to the ranking of the CBMs, the Circular Supplies Model is the most appropriate CBM for SMEs followed by the Resource Recovery Model, Product Lifecycle Extension Model, Product-Service Systems and Sharing Platforms.

Shane Carnohan (RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Sweden)
Annika Löwgren (RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Sweden)
Manuel Gomez (CIRCE - Technology Center for Energy Resources and Consumption, Spain)
Sara Abd Alla (RINA Consulting, Italy)
Sonia Ascaso Malo (University of Zaragoza, Spain)
Rickard Fornell (RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Sweden)
Revisiting opportunity identification in industrial symbiosis in light of shifting paradigms towards sustainable development
PRESENTER: Shane Carnohan

ABSTRACT. The new innovation agenda in the EU highlights the need for innovation to drive progress towards a sustainable and inclusive transformation by fostering innovations that address global challenges by using a Complex Adaptive System lens, and where focus is on interdisciplinary collaboration and cross-sectoral partnerships between government, business, academia, civil society, and communities to co-create solutions.

Industrial symbiosis (IS) has clearly shown its added value compared to systems without these types of collaborative efforts. Two distinct forerunners in this field in Europe are Kalundborg in Denmark and the National Industrial Symbiosis Programme in the UK. Much of the development and strategies in the EU today are based on learning from the success of these and other existing symbiotic developments (e.g. Arentsen 2016). Research has shown that there is a need to further address the transformative potential of industrial symbiosis as a sociotechnical complex adaptive system (Lütje & Wohlgemuth 2020), since majority of research on the dynamics of IS networks is based on historical data from practice (Lange 2017). We contend there is also a need to also understand and develop processes and practical methods to capture the transformative potential and alignment towards agendas and visions for the future.This study developed this perspective within three industrial symbiosis lighthouses in Spain, Italy and Sweden and compared these to the state of the art. We assessed how opportunity identification for IS matched the requirements of a sustainable transformation of society, and what development might be needed in methods as well as mental models to enhance the alignment. Based on results of the case studies we highlight three aspects to address within IS opportunity identification.

Rebecca Earley (University of the Arts London, UK)
Laetitia Forst (University of the Arts London, UK)
Elvys Sandu (MaiBine, Romania)
Andreea Sofronea (MaiBine, Romania)
BioTEN BURRR: Exploring current use, reuse, repair and recycling practices for bio-based clothing towards guidelines for circular fashion designers
PRESENTER: Rebecca Earley

ABSTRACT. The HEREWEAR project is building a holistic, systems approach towards the creation of an EU market for locally produced textiles and clothing made from bio-based resources. New material solutions have been building on the latest bio-based polyesters and cellulose developments, exploring agricultural waste or bi-product (mainly wheat straw, plentiful in northern Europe) for making cellulosic textile fibres. Working in tandem with technical material research actions, design and manufacturing is being explored via the creation of garment prototypes for streetwear and corporate clothing. The use phase and end-of-life processing management – use, re-use, repair and recycle – is also being explored, to understand how new design approaches and business models might support this. This paper uses the BIO TEN framework currently being developed (Earley and Forst, Forthcoming), to support the translation of lived experiences of working with bio-based materials into recommendations for the design and production of bio-based clothing which considers extended use phases. The BIO TEN gives structure to information, inspirational case studies and specific actions offered to the industry stakeholders. In particular, the framework supports an enhanced definition of remanufacturing as a lifecycle extension strategy, in contrast to its conventional positioning in the field of recycling. The methods for this study included a literature review covering existing guidelines, a practice review of the work of Mai bine, a small social enterprise in Iasi, Romania, interviews with early adopters (Romanian designers experienced in working with bio-based materials), and BURRR workshops with these designers, as well as students in London (BURRR is short for Bio / Use / Reuse / Repair / Recycle). The literature review process collated current design guidelines for product longevity. Four key reports enabled a better understanding of the current scope of recommendations for life cycle extension: Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s ‘New Textiles Economy’(2017), Nottingham Trent University’s ‘Durability Dozen’(Cooper et al., 2021), WRAP’s ‘Sustainable Clothing: A practical guide to enhancing clothing durability and quality’(2017), and Institute for Positive Fashion’s ‘The Circular Fashion Ecosystem, A Blueprint for the Future’(2021). This review highlighted the absence of guidelines that are specific to novel bio-based materials therefore pointing to a need for recommendations that can support designers in using these materials in circular design. The practice review with Mai bine, showed that the lifecycle extension part of circularity includes the recovery and remanufacturing of clothing for a new use, and that this approach is different to recycling in which fibres are recovered as a raw material. It was also made apparent that different materials behave differently in this remanufacturing process. The interviews with five early adopters, revealed key insights from the lived and professional experiences of bio-based man-made cellulosic fibres. These can be arranged under four themes: [1] Availability of the materials [2] Quality of the materials [3] Price of the materials [4] End of life options of the materials. The insights produced through these interviews and the BURRR workshops took the form of practical recommendations based on the participants’ experience. They were written up to align with the Bio TEN framework. These guidelines are aimed at fibre, textile and garment manufacturers and designers and encourage them to also build comprehensive communications and collaborations with marketing personnel, inside organisations and externally. Support tools in the design process are generally tested by their developers (Roy and Warren, 2019), connecting directly with the users of biobased materials to test the BIO TEN guidelines is therefore a necessary step for their effective diffusion in the fashion textiles industry. By translating the insights from the interviews and workshops to practical prompts relating to circularity, both in terms of resource recovery and product longevity, using the BIO TEN framework, the guidelines are grounded in designer’s experience. For instance, in relation to [2] and the quality of biobased materials, BIO TEN 5 ‘Design for Circular Lifecycle extension: Design for durability’ offers a range of recommendations around product-specific physical durability, emotional durability, or repairability. The other points listed above also relate to the BIO TEN. The next steps for the HEREWEAR project are the development of a software tool which will include a full set of inspirational case studies and guidelines to support the design of bio-based fashion garments. Further referencing the experience of designers with the guidelines will help the industry to take-up these results. Key words: circular economy; repair; bio-based materials; textiles; clothing References Cooper, T. et al. (2021) Clothing Durability Dozen: strategies to improve design and testing for clothing longevity. Nottingham Trent University. Available at: https://www.ntu.ac.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0035/1395494/30_04_21_NTU-DURABILITY-DOZEN-TOOLKIT_10-31.pdf (Accessed: 8 February 2022). Earley, R. and Forst, L. (Forthcoming) ‘The BIO TEN Design Guidelines: Inspiring biobased, local, durable, and circular innovation in fashion textiles’, in PLATE proceedings. Product Lifetimes and the Environment, Espoo, Finland. Ellen MacArthur Foundation (2017) A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning fashion’s future. Available at: http://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/publications (Accessed: 19 March 2019). Institute of Positive fashion (2021) The Circular Fashion Ecosystem, A Blueprint for the Future: Findings from phase 1 of Positive Fashion’s Circular Faashion Ecosystem project. Available at: https://instituteofpositivefashion.com/uploads/files/1/CFE/Circular_Fashion_Ecosytem_Report.pdf (Accessed: 8 February 2022). Roy, R. and Warren, J.P. (2019) ‘Card-based design tools: a review and analysis of 155 card decks for designers and designing’, Design Studies, 63, pp. 125–154. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.destud.2019.04.002. WRAP (2017) Sustainable Clothing: A practical guide to enhancing clothing durability and quality. Available at: https://wrap.org.uk/sites/default/files/2020-08/WRAP-Sustainable-Clothing-Guide-2017.pdf (Accessed: 8 February 2022).

Tom Pettau (Ruhr University Bochum, Germany)
Laura Montag (Ruhr University Bochum, Germany)
Verena Luisa Aufderheide (Ruhr University Bochum, Germany)
Circular economy and resilience: application possibilities to strengthen the resilience at the micro, meso and macro level

ABSTRACT. Linear economy (LE) with its “take, make, and waste” approach extracts resources from the environment and processes them into products with limited lifetimes, which are then disposed of in the environment [1]. In doing so, LE assumes that raw materials are constantly available, and that disposal is inexpensive and possible at any time [2]. However, in reality, the amount of available primary raw materials is shrinking [1]. This and the limited space for waste lead to a new paradigm of value preservation [3], where waste is considered as a raw material with additional value [2,4]. The circular economy (CE) is a comprehensive concept, but it can be reduced to the following three objectives: Narrowing, slowing, and closing material cycles [5]. To implement the goals, the so-called R-strategies can be used: Refuse (R0), Rethink (R1), Reduce (R2), Reuse (R3), Repair (R4), Refurbish (R5), Remanufacture (R6), Repurpose (R7), Recycle (R8), and Recover (R9) [6]. CE can be applied at all levels: Product or process level, within a company, or at local, national, and global levels [7]. Actors can operate at the micro, meso, and macro levels: • Micro: individual customer, small company • Meso: midsize-large company, geographic region, city, industrial park • Macro: country (government), globally operating company Depending on which CE strategy is applied or implemented, interdependencies and mutual influences must be taken into account. In addition to that, the different planning horizons are relevant as implemented CE strategies at one level may influence decisions at other levels. In order to implement the CE in a targeted and holistic way, it is necessary to consider at which levels R-strategies should be applied and analyze the underlying cause-effect relationships. Another field that has been insufficiently studied so far is the relationship between CE and resilience [8]. This research is thus guided by the following research question: How and at what levels of decision-making can CE strategies be implemented by actors at each level to increase resilience? To answer this question and thus bridge an existing research gap, it is analyzed how resilience differs in a linear and a circular environment. One important distinction in that research context is that between static and dynamic resilience. While static resilience is the ability to absorb disruption and subsequently return to the original state [9], dynamic resilience aim towards the evolution of a system to a new equilibrium that is similar to but better than the old one [9]. Our analysis compares a traditional, linear supply chain with a circular supply chain in terms of resilience. It follows the SCOR processes and thoroughly takes a closer look at the micro, meso and macro level as well as the different planning horizons. Figure 1 is an excerpt of this analysis illustrates the resilience comparison for the process SOURCE. Figure 1: Resilience in linear and circular supply chains (excerpt, own depiction) Key words: circular economy; resilience; decision level; SCOR; micro, meso, and macro level [1] C. W. Babbitt, S. Althaf, F. Cruz Rios, M. M. Bilec, and T. E. Graedel, „The role of design in circular economy solutions for critical materials“, One Earth, Vol. 4, No. 3, pp. 353–362, 2021, doi: 10.1016/j.oneear.2021.02.014. [2] R. Perey, S. Benn, R. Agarwal, and M. Edwards, „The place of waste: Changing business value for the circular economy“, Bus Strat Env, Vol. 27, No. 5, pp. 631–642, 2018, doi: 10.1002/bse.2068. [3] L. H. Xavier, M. Ottoni, and L. P. P. Abreu, „A comprehensive review of urban mining and the value recovery from e-waste materials“, Resources, Conservation and Recycling, Vol. 190, Article 106840, 2022, doi: 10.1016/j.resconrec.2022.106840. [4] T. Keijer, V. Bakker, and J. C. Slootweg, „Circular chemistry to enable a circular economy“, Nature Chem, Vol. 11, No. 3, pp. 190–195, 2019, doi: 10.1038/s41557-019-0226-9. [5] N. M. P. Bocken, „Product design and business model strategies for a circular economy“, Journal of Industrial and Production Engineering, Vol. 33, No. 5, pp. 308–320, 2016, doi: 10.1080/21681015.2016.1172124. [6] J. Potting, M. P. Hekkert, E. Worrell, and A. Hanemaaijer, Circular Economy: Measuring innovation in the product chain, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague, 2017. [7] R. A. Meidl, „Disentangling Circular Economy, Sustainability, and Waste Management Principles“, Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, 2021. https://www.bakerinstitute.org/research/disentangling-circular-economy-sustainability-and-waste-management-principles (accessed 19/12/22). [8] B. Suárez-Eiroa, E. Fernández, and G. Méndez, „Integration of the circular economy paradigm under the just and safe operating space narrative: Twelve operational principles based on circularity, sustainability and resilience“, Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 322, Article 129071, 2021, doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2021.129071. [9] G. F. Massari, A. Annarelli, S. Primario, and G. Puliga, „On the synergetic relationship between Circular Economy and Resilience: findings from a systematic literature review“, IFAC-PapersOnLine, Vol. 55, No. 10, pp. 2869–2874, 2022, doi: 10.1016/j.ifacol.2022.10.166.

Rosie Hornbuckle (University of the Arts London, UK)
Co-designing knowledge flow for systemic innovation in textiles: Bio-based, Local, Circular

ABSTRACT. As challenging as circularity is in any sector, textiles are particularly problematic: they have a distributed and complex value chain involving many stakeholders and making systemic change difficult to enact. Textiles are produced within sectors (fashion/interiors) where there is constant change, high material throughput, mixed material types and unpredictable use phases making material recovery challenging. While the packaging industry has been able to homogenise its materials through procurement agreements and coalitions (WRAP n.d.), the textile industry has struggled to settle on a unified strategy to ensure circularity. Policy reforms in the textiles and fashion industries are looming yet, in part due to the complexity of the textile system, progress is slow. Without a clear process for multi-stakeholder action, the question remains: how can the textiles industry transition to a circular and more sustainable system? This paper presents initial findings from a Horizon 2020 research project – HEREWEAR – which attempts to create Systemic Material Innovation in the textiles ecosystem through local, biobased and circular strategies. This paper focusses on the role of co-design in enabling knowledge flow between project partners and stakeholders, to create a systemic view of the key questions and concerns and reveal opportunities for multi-stakeholder transition. The Project Case HEREWEAR is a 4-year European H2020-funded research project focussing on the use of chemical processes to transform agricultural by-products into high value bio-based fibres, yarns, textiles and garments. The consortium includes partners representing the textile value chain from raw material to market and importantly involves the stakeholder community. The project will have progressed through two-thirds of the funding period at the time of the symposium. The specific study presented in this paper relates to a process of facilitating knowledge flow between project partners and external stakeholders, to help guide the development and translation of project knowledge into impactful guidelines and training materials at the project conclusion. The primary research involved conducting co-design workshops and interviews with project partners, and a sense-making, translation and visualisation phase to develop co-design probes (Prendiville et al, forthcoming) for a series of online stakeholder workshops. The outcomes of the workshops were then thematically coded to reveal stakeholders’ common questions and concerns relating to the project concept as a whole and to specific planned project outputs. These were related back to partners and used iteratively as prompts to help guide and shape the contents of guidelines being produced by each work package. These findings supported a ‘sense-checking’ of the project outputs so that they address the key concerns and questions of the stakeholders. This process is ongoing and therefore represents early results. Discussion and Recommendations By allowing consortium partners the space to explore and make explicit their assumptions about the value of their technologies and interventions to the overall goal, they were able to understand the differences between their own conceptions, that of other partners and of the stakeholder community early in project and respond appropriately. For example, the notion and value of a ‘micro-factory’ was understood differently by several of the consortium partners, and the stakeholder engagement revealed questions and concerns that had not been prioritised by the lead partner, such as the impact of digitisation on jobs, the social impact of producing garments at higher economic cost, and the expectation that waste materials could be reincorporated back into the micro-factory. The process also revealed many potentially positive social impacts of the micro-factory, especially in making up-skilling more accessible. These findings echo across other project outputs discussed with stakeholders in addition to the micro-factory and will be elaborated in the paper. The research reveals how an apparently complex value chain and a ‘difficult to imagine’ systemic innovation (bio-based/local/circular) can be ‘unpacked’ and mobilised by facilitating knowledge flow between diverse partners and stakeholders (Hornbuckle 2022). Although the project has not reached its conclusion, the research has connected scientific research to the real world, and allowed scientists to begin to incorporate the perspectives of the people who are ultimately expected to adopt and adapt the technologies in order to realise the projects long-term ambitions (Prendiville et al forthcoming). It is recommended that all projects which seek real-world impact through scientific translation and technology ‘exploitation’ should prioritise the facilitation of knowledge flow between project partners (scientific knowledge producers) and stakeholders (lived experience knowers) to co-produce mutual understanding about how to achieve systemic innovation. Co-creating value (Vargo & Lusch 2004) in the project outputs is crucial to improving the likelihood of transition and transformation within society and industry. References Hornbuckle, R. (2022) Project Proximities: how design research addresses distance in complex collaborations. DRS 2022 Bilbao conference proceedings Prendiville, A., Hornbuckle, R., Fuller, S., Grimaldi, S., & Albuquerque, S. (forthcoming) Deep and meaningful: an iterative approach to developing an authentic narrative for public engagement in Plant Molecular Farming Vargo, S. L., & Lusch, R. F. (2004) Evolving to a new dominant logic for marketing. Journal of Marketing 68: 1–17. WRAP (n.d.) History of the Courthauld Commitment (online) https://wrap.org.uk/taking-action/food-drink/initiatives/courtauld-commitment/history-courtauld-commitment (accessed 31/03/23)

Rafael Mora-Contreras (Universidad de La Sabana, Colombia)
Javier Carrillo-Hermosilla (University of Alcala, Spain)
Laura Cristina Ramírez-Rodríguez (University of Navarra, Spain)
Luz Elba Torres-Guevara (Universidad de La Sabana, Colombia)
Andrés Mejia-Villa (Universidad de La Sabana, Colombia)
Circular economy, cleaner production, and environmental management: A longitudinal study to assess the companies' sustainability performance in an emerging economy

ABSTRACT. Research that has addressed the impacts of environmental management systems (EMSs) and cleaner production (CP) considering their intersections with the circular economy (CE) on companies' sustainability performance is currently very scarce. To fill this research gap, this article studies the impacts of EMSs, CP, and their intersections with the CE on manufacturing companies' sustainability performance in Colombia during 2012-2019. This study used secondary data from the Colombian National Administrative Department of Statistics (DANE in Spanish) of 1,544 manufacturing companies and through the impact assessment, the effects established in the main objective were revealed. The results showed that companies adopting EMSs, CP, or both improve their organizational performance, create economic and environmental value from the adoption of industrial symbiosis associated with the sale of certain wastes, and the social benefits are limited to the creation of green jobs. We also found that the adoption of EMSs and CP does not necessarily imply circularity. Therefore, this research proposes that companies adopt CE from a more strategic perspective to create sustainable value while progressively decoupling resource consumption supported by systemic eco-innovations and technology.

11:00-13:00 Session 4C: Food waste and policies
Giacomo Di Foggia (University of Milano - Bicocca, Italy)
Location: Room 3
Sristhi Singh (Universidade Católica Portuguesa Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Portugal)
Hafsae Lamsaf (Universidade Católica Portuguesa Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Portugal)
Inês Mota (Universidade Católica Portuguesa Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Portugal)
Rita Mendes (Universidade Católica Portuguesa Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Portugal)
Cintia Goes (Universidade Católica Portuguesa Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Portugal)
Fátima Poças (Universidade Católica Portuguesa Escola Superior de Biotecnologia, Portugal)
The role of biodegradable materials in food packaging in the context of circular economy

ABSTRACT. The concept of circular economy (CE) is intensively discussed and addressed by different actors of value chains, politicians, and academia. As applied to food packaging, it is frequently depicted as a combination of reducing, reusing, and recycling activities. Packaging plays an essential role in the food supply, protecting and containing food from processing and manufacturing, through distribution, handling, and storage to the final consumer. Without packaging, food distribution would be inefficient and much more costly. Despite the critical role it plays and its economic relevance, packaging is, in the view of many consumers, a waste of resources, which ends up exclusively as an environmental burden. Such views arise because the functions packaging must perform are either unknown or not fully considered and appreciated by the consumer. The recent review of the European packaging and packaging waste directive under discussion proposes sustainability requirements for packaging and apart from recyclability, bio-based, compostable, and biodegradable packaging are addressed. Bio-based materials, and in particular biodegradable, are generally perceived by consumer as a solution for more sustainable packaging. However, the properties of biodegradable materials may not suffice the required protection and shelf-life specifications as under the today’s standards of distribution and supply chains. As a consequence, the use of biodegradable materials as food packaging may result in shorter shelf-life and increased food losses. Furthermore, contamination of recyclables streams with biodegradable articles is a problem for the quality of the conventional recovery streams intended to be recycled. Therefore, the benefits of using biodegradable materials as food packaging needs to be critically evaluated using recognized tools, such as life cycle assessment (LCA). Polybutylene Adipate Terephthalate (PBAT), a synthetic biodegradable polyester, is the main biodegradable material commercially used today for flexible packaging. PBAT and its blends has raised much attention of researchers and industry. It is fully biodegradable and compostable but relies on fossil-based resources, at least partially. Therefore, it is arguable if it fits into the concept of circular economy. Despite this, PBAT is targeted in many studies highlighting its biodegradability and dedicating efforts in improving its functionality for food preservation, including antimicrobial active packaging. This work presents a critical review, based on scientific literature focusing on the role biodegradable materials on food packaging considering the need of closing the loop underlying circular economy. PBAT is addressed as a case study.

Marco Serafini (Maastricht university, Netherlands)
Cris Garcia-Saravia Ortiz-de-Montellano (Maastricht University, Netherlands)
Yvonne Van der Meer (Maastricht university, Netherlands)
Assessing environmental sustainability by integrating LCA, SDGs and CE indicators in food industry
PRESENTER: Marco Serafini

ABSTRACT. The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework addresses a number of global challenges including climate action, responsible consumption and production, clean water, life below water, life on land, among others (United Nations, n.d.). Performance against these 17 SDGs are mostly reported at global and national level through 231 indicators. However, there is currently no standardized framework or method to monitor and report progresses towards the SDGs at company and institutional levels, or to develop a clear roadmap for achieving them (García-Sánchez et al., 2020; Van der Waal & Thijssens, 2020).

Concurrently, the circular economy (CE) presents a more sustainable economic system than the traditional "take-make-use-dispose" model (Garcia-Saravia Ortiz-de-Montellano, C., & van der Meer, Y., 2022). CE aims to minimize waste and maximize resource use by extending the life of products and materials. It is based on principles that involve designing out waste and pollution, keeping materials and products in use, and regenerating natural systems. The goal is to achieve balance between the resource use from technosphere and ecosphere to obtain a sustainable and resilient system (Ellen Macarthur Foundation, 2019). Adopting CE principles can help meet several SDGs under appropriate conditions. However, designing a framework that indicates the necessary conditions for CE to address SDGs in the life cycle of a product, process, or service is not an easy task. The CE is not a one-size-fits-all solution and depends on the specific context in which it is being implemented. Thus, a multidisciplinary approach is needed to develop a framework that can effectively guide the adoption of CE principles to address SDGs in terms of economic, social and environmental pillars, taking into account the full range of factors that can influence the success of CE strategies.

Regarding environmental sustainability, life cycle assessment (LCA) is a standardized methodology, which guidelines are presented in ISO 14040 and 14044. LCA is used to report environmental impacts throughout the entire life cycle of a specific product, process or service (Institute for Environment and Sustainability, 2010). These reports are used by companies, NGOs, institutions and stakeholders to monitor the progresses in terms of sustainability. Additionally, they are used to analyze and investigate areas for improvement in order to create more sustainable life cycles. In this work LCA methodology has been implemented in order to express circularity and environmental SDGs. With this approach it is expected to further develop a methodology to support the shift towards a CE and achieving SDGs.

To apply this methodology, food industry was chosen as case study due to the significant challenges it faces. Currently, one-third of the global food produced is wasted along the food value chain. Single-use plastic packaging used for food applications represent one of the main source of plastic waste in Europe. Additionally, livestock farming for animal-based food is responsible for 15% of the global greenhouses gas (GHG) emissions and contribute to deforestation and habitat destruction for pastureland. Applying LCA to investigate these critical processes can lead to improvements in order to fulfill circular economy and SDG principles.

Milica Stojković (University of Belgrade, Serbia)
Vesna Alivojvodić (The Academy of Applied Technical Studies Belgrade, Serbia)
Maja Đolić (University of Belgrade, Serbia)
Aleksandra Vučinić (Ministry of Environmental Protection, Serbia)
Legal Framework for the circular food waste management in the Republic of Serbia

ABSTRACT. Paris Agreement and the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda set the global goals that should be achieved by 2030, with Goal 12.3 related to decreasing food loss and waste. For Serbia, as a developing country on its way to joining the EU, harmonization with the legal framework is necessary for all areas, including the field of circular economy, which is related to waste management, energy efficiency, use of renewable energy sources, etc. Serbia's Roadmap for a Circular Economy named manufacturing, packaging and plastics, demolition and building waste, and agriculture and food waste its top four target industries. According to the data of the Serbian Environmental Protection Agency, 46% of the total municipal waste collected in the Republic of Serbia is biodegradable waste. The Food Bank's estimate is that in the Republic of Serbia, around 250,000 tons of still-edible food is discarded annually, in the entire supply chain. The estimated value of this food is approximately 240 million euros, and almost all collected food waste is disposed of in landfills without any treatment. The most pressing issues in this area are inadequately defined legal regulations, a lack of adequate information regarding the source and quantity of food, poorly developed infrastructure in the area of utilizing this type of waste, lack of coordination between the work of various state authorities dealing with this issue, and a low level of public awareness of the significance of the issue's resolution. During the previous period, important strategic documents and laws were adopted that provided guidelines for the green transition. Some of the most significant are: - Law on Waste Management ("Official Gazette of RS", No. 36/09 and 95/18-other law) which defines the conditions for the establishment and development of an integrated waste management system in accordance with the standards of EU legislation in this area, and envisages the obligation of separate collection of bio-waste, except for edible oils and fats, for catering and tourist activities, industry, trade, etc. that are used for the processing and production of biofuels. Article 14 of this law contains a program to reduce the amount of biodegradable waste in municipal waste (composting in yards or building a regional waste management center with a line for biodegradable waste). - Regulation on landfill disposal ("Official Gazette of the RS", 92/2010) transferred the biodegradable waste disposal reduction rates from Directive 99/31/EC on landfills. - Industrial Policy Strategy of the Republic of Serbia from 2021 to 2030 ("Official Gazette of RS", No. 35/20) regarding the process industry (particularly food), the construction industry, and agriculture, the policy intends to move toward a circular model of the economy and the industrial sector. - The Strategy of Agriculture and Rural Development of the Republic of Serbia for the period 2014-2024 ("Official Gazette of RS", No. 85/14) deals with modernization and technological development of agricultural production, increasing efficiency in production, which is related to the first aiming at the hierarchy in waste management, all levels of the food supply chain, control of waste management during agricultural production. - Waste Management Program for the period 2022-2031, was adopted ("Official Gazette of RS", No. 12/22) it contains strategic goals for improving the waste management system with guidelines for all stakeholders involved in waste management. - Program for Development of Circular Economy in the Republic of Serbia for the period 2022-2024 ("Official Gazette of RS", No. 137/22), which was adopted in 2022, envisages green transition of Serbia by applying the circular economy concept. To solve this issue, a holistic approach and cooperation of the state, local self-governments, utility companies, and citizens is necessary. The first step is undoubtedly clearly defining the goals that should include the following areas: - Harmonization of the law on waste management with the Directive of the European Parliament 2018/851 and adoption of regulations on biowaste management. Legal definitions are necessary for the adoption of restrictions on the disposal of biowaste with municipal waste or the imposition of charges for the landfilling of food waste; incentive measures in providing the necessary infrastructure, stimulus measures for collection of unused food in supply chains (i.e. production, processing, distribution, and consumption) with the aim of further safe redistribution, including humanitarian organizations. The Rulebook would additionally regulate this area, with specific proposed solutions. - Strengthening awareness of the importance of solving this issue through educational and informational campaigns. A better understanding of the terms 'use-by' and 'best-before'. Education of republican and local inspections on adequate monitoring that ensures the implementation of legal measures. - Consideration of favorable treatments for the utilization of food waste, following the hierarchy of waste management and the experience of other countries in this field. Some of the possible treatments are: the production of biodiesel, bioethanol, or animal feed, as well as the process of anaerobic digestion, composting or thermal treatment. Implementing a circular economy is crucial for Serbia, by embracing modern standards, to move beyond its current economic development stage and develop a more advanced economy with higher competitiveness, increase job growth, simpler access to the global market, and higher GDP. It is necessary to address this idea from various angles, including strategic, legal, technological, economic, and environmental protection. Therefore, Serbia needs more complex, crosscutting, and related national public policies and rules to create an environment that encourages new investment.

Katharina Pavlovic (FH Campus Wien, Austria)
Romana Schmiedt (FH Campus Wien, Austria)
Farshad Sharbafian (FH Campus Wien, Austria)
Development of recycling-friendly polyolefin-based food packaging films

ABSTRACT. The EU Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive demands that by 2030, all packaging must be recyclable or reusable. Flexible packaging made from multilayer materials is difficult to recycle due to its composition. Therefore, the packaging industry is investing a lot of effort in redesigning flexible packaging to improve recyclability. Monomaterial packaging is an alternative, but it often does not provide as effective barrier properties as desired. Alternative barrier solutions must be developed to replace the functions of multilayer composite materials. However, flexible packaging offers many benefits such as efficiency and tailored properties for the packaged product. In the Reflex project, new solutions for flexible food packaging are developed. The goal is to create recyclable flexible food packaging that protects the product being packaged in terms of its barrier requirements. Specifications of food packaging films based on polyolefins (PO) were collected and characterized for various product groups. The collected data was used to create a profile of properties for each application, which forms the basis for the suitability assessment of Polyolefin (PO) monofilms. Various coating experiments were carried out manually and automatically at the laboratory scale with inorganic-organic hybrid polymers (ORMOCER®s), Polyvinylalkohol (PVOH), and a commercial oxygen barrier lacquer from Michelman. Different base films were used as substrates (OPP (oriented polypropylene), CPP (cast polypropylene), PP/SiOx and PP/AlOx films with different oxygen barriers) provided by project partners. There are already some promising results, especially combinations of PP/SiOx and PP/AlOx films with ORMOCER®s, PVOH, and the standard barrier lacquer from Michelman. Suitable coatings for the middle oxygen permeability range (e.g., for cheese) have already been achieved. First positive results have also been achieved in the highest oxygen barrier range. As the developed food packaging films are currently only theoretically recyclable, the focus in the third year of research is on evaluating recyclability through simulated recyclability tests. By regranulating the developed films and then creating test specimens, the mechanical properties of the recycled material will be examined, and statements about the recyclability of the tested barrier lacquers will be made. A comparison with a currently common EVOH-coated film will also be covered in these tests as well as the evaluation of the influence on three different types of adhesives. The background for analysing the influence of adhesives in the recyclate is that residues of label adhesives, if they cannot be removed from the packaging before recycling, can lead to a deterioration in the quality of the recyclate. Removal tests of self-adhesive labels carried out in the project indicate a lack of removability of labels or label adhesives. With this background and since self-adhesive labels are often used for flexible packaging, the influence of three different types of adhesive is being investigated as part of the recyclability tests in this project. Flexible packaging has taken on an important role in the packaging industry due to its numerous advantages. Increasing pressure from legislations is driving recyclable new developments in this area. The Reflex project demonstrates that this redesign challenges can be achieved. However, to make the transition towards a circular economy for flexible food packaging, it is essential to involve all representatives of the value chain and make adjustments not only in design but also in processes (e.g., collection, sorting). Standardizing design guidelines will also be essential in the future to achieve the required goals.

Ioannis Kostakis (Harokopio University of Athens, Greece)
Stamatina Papadaki (University of West Attica, Greece)
George Malindretos (Harokopio University of Athens, Greece)
The role of socioeconomic factors on households management food waste in the European Union through a macroeconomic investigation

ABSTRACT. Examining the case of EU27 countries is vital for evaluating the environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis but from the food waste perspective. Most European countries are the world's most economically developed and environmentally conscious. Additionally, as the EU might have relatively homogenous institutional and regulatory frameworks, our analysis can help identify common patterns and trends across these countries, allowing us to draw more generalizable conclusions about the relationships between socioeconomic characteristics and food waste behavior. Finally, the disaggregation of total food waste into households and the general food supply chain (primary production and manufacture of food products and beverages, restaurants and food services, and retail and other distribution of food) can inform policy interventions and strategies to promote sustainable development and reduce environmental degradation based on food waste in developed and developing countries.

Giacomo Di Foggia (University of Milano - Bicocca, Italy)
Massimo Beccarello (University of Milano - Bicocca, Italy)
From agrifood waste to bio-based materials: an economic analysis of the dairy industry

ABSTRACT. The rationale and sustainable use of natural resource and the reduction of waste materials are key concepts in bioeconomy. The development of new bio-based materials with new properties and functionalities is expected to meet the increasing demand for sustainable products. Among these, bioplastics will play a key role in the transition from linear economy to a circular system. The definition of bioplastic is very broad and includes biodegradable or biobased plastics, but also materials presenting both properties. Biobased bioplastic can be produced by chemical synthesis starting from bio-monomers (e.g. sugars, lipids or amino acids) or produced by microorganisms. Currently, most of produced bioplastics are prevalently from first-generation biomass used as raw materials, and hence directly competing with food and feed industry for the use of fertile soil. On the other hand, the use of agro-food waste as raw materials is an ethically and economically preferable choice. In Italy, the food industry is the second manufacturing sector, with the dairy industry representing one of the most important entries of the list. Cheese makers produce one of the most abundant agro-food waste, this is cheese whey (CW), given that 1 kg of cheese is obtained from 10 kg of milk, generating 9 kg of CW. Due to its high content in lactose and proteins, CW is considered a pollutant waste and its direct release in the environment, without any pre-treatment, is forbidden. Several attempts of biotechnological exploitation of CW have been proposed in the last decades. Among these, CW was used as a culture medium for the production of polyesters (i.e. a category of bioplastic). In Italy, about 50% of CW is exported to large foreign industrial groups that obtain whey powder or derive more refined products with high added value, i.e. lactose and proteins, widely relocated also on the Italian market. CW proteins are marketed as a dietary supplement, while lactose has found applications in food, feed and pharmaceutical industries and as building block for the synthesis of added-value products. Moreover, lactose from CW or from permeate can be hydrolysed to produce sweet syrups for food and feed, and fermentation feedstock. Starting from the lactose present in the permeate fraction of CW, the production of new biobased bioplastics by (bio)chemical synthesis is analysed from a wider economic perspective. The purpose of this paper is threefold and starts from the identification of constraints, opportunities, strengths and weaknesses to be addressed in order to maximize the overall output of the project and consequently the opportunities for the territory coming from the production of bio-based biopolymers as sustainable substitutes for plastics and the valorisation of cheese whey as a secondary raw materials which is currently largely exported as waste and then imported as an intermediate product with higher added value with negative impact on the balance of trade. The analyses consists in the evaluation in monetary terms of the processes of creation and distribution of added value. Like most cost-benefit analyses, economic analysis is carried out both from the point of view of private market operators, using market prices, and from the point of view of society as a whole. Specifically, the paper comprehends the analysis of the project potentiality in the socio-economic context, the demand for final and intermediate products and a cost and economic impact analysis.

13:00-14:00Lunch Break
14:00-16:00 Session 5A: Circular economy in buildings and tourism
Galiegue Xavier (University of Orléans, France)
Location: Room 1
Kone Sita (Ege University, Turkey)
Galiegue Xavier (University of Orléans, France)
Biochar as an adaptation tool to climate change in Africa: context, levers and barriers to deployment
PRESENTER: Galiegue Xavier

ABSTRACT. One of the most important obstacles to increasing agricultural production yields worldwide, especially in developing economies such as those in Africa is the continued degradation of soils due to climate change. In response to this threat, one of the strategies advocated is biochar technology, which is one of the emerging sustainable and climate-friendly soil amendments, which has been experimented in various contexts worldwide. This article reviews a brief description of biochar, the advantages and disadvantages of its use, and the levers and barriers to its deployment, with a specific focus on Africa. It will also address the prospects for valuing it potential impact on agricultural productivity in African countries. Biochar is a carbon-rich soil amendment obtained from the pyrolysis of biomass (such as leaves and agricultural residues) in the absence or presence of little oxygen. Biochar application can be a means to not only sequester carbon in the soil but also to restore essential organic matter lost with the removal of biomass from agricultural systems for energy production. As it can be produced by burning biomass wastes, it can be easily implemented and deployed in developing countries, then contributing to circular economy, and could furthermore leads to negative carbon emissions. It gives also another source of revenue to the agricultural sector by providing a supplementary energy source and soil amendment. However, it can have secondary effects including negative impacts on human health, pollution, and water quality. Furthermore, the positive results of biochar use in Africa suggest a prospect for ensuring the feasibility of biochar technology in policy decisions as a sustainable alternative to agricultural land management in the combat against climate change. The paper reviews the levers that could be mobilized in order to promote the use of Biochar, and the barriers which could limit it. As recommendations, a combination of improved seed varieties, and SWC (Soil and Water Conservation) techniques with the application of Biochar will be a perfect innovation for an intelligent adaptation practice to the destructive action of climate change in agriculture.

Maria Markaki (Hellenic Mediterranean University, Greece)
Stelios Papadakis (Hellenic Mediterranean University, Greece)
The Carbon Footprint of Inbound Tourism in Greece: A Global Value-Chain Analysis
PRESENTER: Maria Markaki

ABSTRACT. The research aims to estimate the carbon footprint of inbound tourism in Greece and identify the economic activity sectors that generate the most carbon dioxide air pollutants due to tourism demand. The carbon footprint calculation is carried out using an environmentally extended input-output model, which allows the identification of direct and indirect emissions due to domestic production and to the country’s integration into global value chains.

Georgia Skiniti (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
Theocharis Tsoutsos (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
Sustainable Tourism modeling & Characteristics: An assessment of the touristic ecofootprint in Platanias
PRESENTER: Georgia Skiniti

ABSTRACT. The European Parliament defined overtourism as the situation in which the impact of tourism, at certaintimes and in certain locations, exceeds physical, ecological, social, economic, psychological, and/or political capacity thresholds. Coastal regions of the Mediterranean, known for their natural beauty and hospitality, are some of the most affected areas by this phenomenon. To assess the impact of overtourism in Platanias, a popular urban coastal attraction, the tourism ecological footprint (TEF) approach was used. This method considers various indicators such as carbon emissions, water use, land use, and waste production to evaluate the environmental impact of tourism activities. The four-step methodology used in Platanias involved assessing the ecofootprint of arrival-departure transportation, local activities transportation, accommodation, and food consumption. The TEF approach is a valuable tool for decision-making and sustainable tourism development, and preservation of urban coastal ecosystems for future generations.

Christos Lemonakis (Hellenic Mediterranean University, Greece)
Religious Tourism and the Circular Economy

ABSTRACT. Religious tourism has been an important part of the global tourism industry for many years. In recent years, there has been a growing movement to incorporate religious tourism into the circular economy, which aims to reduce waste and make the best use of resources. In this paper, religious tourism and its impact on the circular economy are considered from four different perspectives: (1) Sustainable accommodation: Many religious sites are located in natural or rural areas, and eco-lodges and campgrounds are becoming increasingly popular as sustainable accommodation options. These options allow tourists to connect with nature while minimizing environmental impact; (2) local and organic catering to reduce CO2 emissions and support local farmers; (3) sustainable transportation to reduce CO2 emissions from traditional transportation; (4) waste reduction, e.g., recycling and composting programs and encouraging visitors to bring their own reusable water bottles and bags; (5) social responsibility: many religious sites are becoming more involved in their local communities, supporting local businesses, and promoting social responsibility. We seek to identify the key trends in integrating religious tourism into the circular economy. The above five parameters are used to find circular patterns in the economy. They are used to study the quality of the websites of the main Orthodox religious sites on the Greek island of Crete. Then, the multi-criteria method of PROMETHEE II is applied for the overall ranking. Also, the best websites for religious tourism are mentioned and examined for how they influence and promote the concept of a circular economy.

Maria Manola (University of West Attica, Greece)
Anna-Irini Tsatalbassoglou (University of West Attica, Greece)
George Koltsikoglou (University of West Attica, Greece)
Fotini Maniou (University of Aegean, Greece)
The contribution of Nikos Kazantzakis to the strengthening of literary tourism and the sustainable development of Heraklion
PRESENTER: Maria Manola

ABSTRACT. Tourism is a major source of income for many countries, one of which is Greece, which is active in this field. According to the World Tourism Organization, tourism is the key to the economic and social improvement of a place's living conditions, as it constantly creates new jobs and develops infrastructure. As the range of activities is wide, beyond the classic form of relaxation vacations, there are other tourist activities aimed at sustainable development. Literary tourism is one of them. Literary tourism is presented in various forms, while it is a type of cultural tourism or heritage tourism. According to Andersen & Robinson (2002) literary tourism "involves tourists and visitors who identify with, discover and create cultural values with those people (authors) who have become part of the cultural mythologies of places". The main interest of these tourist-visitors are the places and events narrated in literary texts, while a basis is also given to the lives and history of their authors. Literary tourism includes areas mentioned in books (such as the hero's home, a restaurant he frequented, a hidden place, paths the heroes followed, etc.). Even the literary tourists as mentioned by Manola (2019) show a special interest in the places that inspired the author to create the story of the book and are interested in understanding the environment that influenced him. The above facts, combined with the fact that culture is one of the four main pillars of the sustainable development of places, literary tourism can help to revitalize the places that have it and contribute to their sustainable development. One such place is the city of Heraklion. Mitoula and Kaldis (2018) state that the creation of cultural spaces and routes is a key tool for highlighting historical material and intangible monuments and, by extension, places. Therefore, the need arises to investigate the strategies that could favor the development of the sustainability of the city of Heraklion, highlighting these monuments, following in the footsteps of an important literary writer who hails from the city, Nikos Kazantzakis. The subject of this paper is the contribution of Nikos Kazantzakis to the sustainable development of Crete. Nikos Kazantzakis is a huge capital for Crete, as the potential he possesses at the global level is inexhaustible and goes beyond the classical literary routes. His works such as "The Life and State of Alexis Zorba", "Captain Michalis", "Reference to Greco", "Christ Re-Crucified" are some of the novels that have become world famous through their translations. Also, as Beaton (2011) mentions, his works became even more popular due to their transfer to the big screen by directors such as Cakogiannis, Dassin and Scorsese, while the novel "Christ is crucified" was made into a series on the Greek ERT by Georgiadis. The paper refers to the way in which visitors-tourists perceive the contribution of the literary works of the author in question to the promotion of an alternative form of tourism. In order to answer the main questions of the work and to investigate the importance of the "tourism product "Nikos Kazantzakis" for local development and sustainability, a survey was carried out aimed at the tourists/visitors of Heraklion. For the needs of the research, a questionnaire was created, which included twenty-five (25) closed-type structured response questions, was anonymous and distributed to 253 people. The research was carried out in the months of July and August 2022. The questionnaire was addressed exclusively to adult tourists of all ages from 18 years and above. Interesting conclusions emerged from the research. From the most important preliminary findings, it follows that tourists are interested in the creation of a literary park that will have Heraklion as its starting point and will also extend to Myrtia. In the opinion of the sample, the park in question will contribute to the increase in the visitation of both the research area and the wider area. It will also contribute to the preservation and promotion of the general local cultural heritage and to the strengthening of the various cultural activities that take place in Heraklion. In this way, Heraklion will be promoted even more, as a tourist area that escapes from the narrow limit of "sea and sun", since its cultural and hyperlocal literary character will be highlighted to the tourists-visitors. It is noted that in the literature, literary parks are proposed as tools for highlighting local culture and as "infrastructure" that contribute to the sustainable development of places. Through them are defined the indefinite and separate cultural paths that are considered important in the history of literature. They can be points that gave inspiration in a writer's life, the environment he grew up in and the surrounding influences he received. The visitor-tourist, with his visit to a literary park, is facilitated in terms of understanding the author and his works and through them he can come into contact with the environment, get to know the traditions, customs and customs of the area up close (Barilaro, 2005). Literary parks are an important economic factor of local development, as they promote the culture and civilization of the region and help sustainable development with tourism activity. Literary parks also contribute to the protection and promotion of literature and the preservation of the natural beauty of the mentioned areas, therefore, one of the main proposals of this paper refers to the creation of such a park in the area of Heraklion.

Israel Dunmade (Mount Royal University, Canada)
Perception and Awareness of Circular Economy in the Calgary’s Furniture and Allied Manufacturing Sector: An Analysis of the Extent, Causes and Opportunities

ABSTRACT. Awareness and adoption of circular economy and associated practices are on the upward swing globally. However, some jurisdictions and economic sectors are yet to know or fully grasp what circular economy is and what is involved. Widespread awareness and knowledge of circular economy concept and its associated practices is essential to adoption and achieving the benefits of adopting circular economy practices both locally and on a global scale. It is what will enable us to achieve environmental sustainability and other sustainable development goals that could result from employing circular economy practices in various areas of our economic activities. What is unknown may not be used and if accidentally used, it may be misused or the potential may not be fully harnessed. The essentiality of determining what is known or unknown as well as the extent of the knowledge of circular economy in some jurisdictions and economic sectors propelled this study on the awareness and adoption of circular economy in Calgary's furniture and allied products manufacturing industry. The goals of the study include determining the level of awareness or the lack of awareness of circular economy in Calgary’s furniture and allied product manufacturing sector, understanding the factors that are responsible, and articulating what could be done to promote the awareness and adoption of circular economy in the sector. The study approach consists of site observations, the development and administration of questionnaires, and interviews with top management of the participating companies. Data analysis involved the use of simple descriptive statistics and extraction of linguistic terms. Results showed that about fifty seven percent of the participants are unaware of what circular economy is, even though about ninety percent of them are involved in material recycling and eighty-one percent in product dematerialization which are among the circular economy practices. The use of limited information and education channels, and limited socio-political interest are among the factors responsible for the observed level of circular economy awareness in the industrial sector. These results provide circular economy promoters and policy makers with insights on the level of awareness of circular economy in the sector. The study revealed the need for improvement in public and industry specific education on circular economy. Among the identified adoptable awareness creation approaches are radio jingles, billboard advertisement, television programs, use of social media platforms, organizing discussion forums such as symposiums and workshops, professional conferences, and demonstration/learning centres. Other approaches include incorporation of circular economy education in the curriculums at various education levels, provision of scholarships, and circular economy research funding. This study serves as a wake-up call to circular economy promoters and policy makers to develop more suitable and effective circular economy awareness programs for various jurisdictions and economic sectors. It also showed what could be done to improve the awareness of circular economy principles in the furniture and allied product manufacturing industry. Taking these steps would foster awareness and adoption of circular economy in various sectors of our economy. It will also result in innovations in various sectors, lead to increased employment opportunities, and enable us to reap the dividends of developing and utilizing circular systems in our economic endeavors. These would ultimately lead to resource conservation, waste reduction, environmental protection, sustainable production and consumption, and improvement in public health and ecosystem wellbeing.

14:00-16:00 Session 5B: Business and innovation
Mahak Sharma (University of Twente, Netherlands)
Location: Room 2
Krishnendu Saha (Birmingham City University, UK)
Stefania Paladini (Birmingham City University, UK)
Xavier Pierron (Edinburgh Napier University, UK)
Implementing circular economy for sustainability: a comparative case study of high, medium, and low-tech industries.
PRESENTER: Krishnendu Saha

ABSTRACT. Introduction The circular economy (CE) is a sustainable approach to economic growth that emphasises the use of resources in a closed-loop system. For the high-tech industries, Paladini et al. (2021) assessed the diffusion of learning from the space industry using the Spaceship Earth concept. Within a low-tech industry context, Saha et al. (2021) proposed how the CE can ensure sustainable growth of the textile and clothing (TC) industry and the challenges, strategies and resource required for such an implementation. On the other hand, the 3R principle (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) becomes an essential component through which the waste management industry promotes CE, although the ways this happens vary a great deal across sectors, and factors varying from cost analysis to behavioural economics come into play (Pierron et al., 2022) with very different outcomes.

Research gap and research questions We conducted a systematic literature review (SLR) on the extant CE research. We identified a lack of comparative case studies examining the implementation of sustainability according to the technological orientation of different industries. While some studies have compared CE practices between industries (e.g., Tunn et al., 2021) and countries within the EU (Dey et al., 2022), no study compared industries that vary significantly in technological orientation. There is limited research on the potential for cross-industry collaboration and knowledge transfer in promoting sustainability practices across sectors. To that extent, we address the following research questions:

RQ1. What are the similarities and differences in the sustainability practices and policies of the commercial space industries, waste management, textile, and clothing industries, and how do these practices contribute to sustainability goals?

RQ2. What are the challenges and opportunities associated with implementing sustainable practices in different industries, and how can cross-industry collaboration and knowledge transfer support by adopting sustainable practices?

RQ3. What are the key lessons that can be learned from the sustainability practices of each industry, and how can these lessons be applied to other industries to promote sustainable practices and protect the planet?

By addressing this research gap, this study will contribute to advancing our understanding of the challenges and opportunities associated with implementing sustainable practices across different sectors and promote the development of evidence-based approaches to promoting sustainability in the global economy.

Research Methodology This study aims to conduct comparative case studies on the CE practices of the space sector, waste management, and TC industry. The study examines these industries' practices and policies under the five (take, make, distribute, use, and recover) CE functions (Prieto-Sandoval et al., 2018). Our analytical framework is derived from a systematic literature review (SLR) process. The constructs and sub-constructs for CE and sustainability performance specific to the space sector, waste management and the TC industry are derived from the SLR to develop a few research hypotheses in line with the RQs. The survey is developed based on the indicators outlined in the literature. The data collection also used secondary data –in specific, industry reports and policy documents relevant to the three industries available in the public domain and academic publications- to understand each industry's sustainability practices and policies. Expected Findings The intended outcomes of the comparative case study analysis will evaluate: (1) what are the factors promoting vs hindering recycling/reselling/reuse in the selected sectors and assess differences and common aspects (2) offer an overview of best practices in place and together recommendations for future policymaking initiatives. We make both a theoretical contribution to the literature and an empirical contribution in identifying and addressing the key enablers and barriers to implementing sustainability practices in operational terms.

References: Dey, P.K., Malesios, C., Chowdhury, S., Saha, K., Budhwar, P. and De, D., 2022. Adoption of circular economy practices in small and medium-sized enterprises: Evidence from Europe. International Journal of Production Economics, 248, p.108496. Saha, K., Dey, P.K. and Papagiannaki, E. (2021) Implementing circular economy in the textile and clothing industry. Business Strategy and the Environment, 30(4), pp.1497-1530. DOI:10.1002/bse.2670 Paladini, S., Saha, K. and Pierron, X., (2021) Sustainable space for a sustainable earth? Circular economy insights from the space sector. Journal of Environmental Management, 289, p.112511. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2021.112511 Pierron, X., Williams, I. D., & Shaw, P. J. (2022). Unlocking the Value of Stockpiled Mobile Handsets: a Delphi Evaluation of Factors Influencing End of Use. Detritus, 18, 12–23. https://doi.org/10.31025/2611-4135/2022.15159 Prieto-Sandoval, V., Jaca, C., & Ormazabal, M. (2018). Towards a consensus on the circular economy. Journal of Cleaner Production, 179, 605–615. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.12.224 Tunn, V.S., Van den Hende, E.A., Bocken, N.M. and Schoormans, J.P., 2021. Consumer adoption of access‐based product‐service systems: The influence of duration of use and type of product. Business Strategy and the Environment, 30(6), pp.2796-2813.

Mahak Sharma (University of Twente, Netherlands)
Konstantinos Tsagarakis (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
Role of Institutional Pressures for Utilising Dynamic Capabilities: From the Focal Lens of Industry 4.0
PRESENTER: Mahak Sharma

ABSTRACT. This research work tries to amalgamate two critical theories to understand if technology can transform manufacturing plants. In this line, authors have utilised the theoretical lens of dynamic capability theory, and investigate the moderating effect of institutional pressure on Industry 4.0 (I4.0) implementation. Consequently, this article sheds light on how institutional pressures impact I4.0 enable implementation in supply chains. A cross-sectional survey with 250 Indian participants has been used to demonstrate that exploration as well exploitation orientation strategy impact degree for I4.0 implementation. Further, the results emphasize that mimetic pressure strengthens the positive indirect impact of exploitation orientation strategy on I4.0 implementation

Georgios Tsironis (Democritus University of Thrace, Greece)
Theodoros Daglis (University of the Aegean, Greece)
Konstantinos P. Tsagarakis (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
The 21 Re Strategies from a Global Investigation of LinkedIn Companies

ABSTRACT. Circular Economy (CE) is continuously evolving in terms of integrated industries, adoption of new strategies, and recognition levels. The vital elements of the CE have been the RE strategies acting as the guidelines and most important action toward the adoption of more circular production and consumption models. In this work, we examined data from 7533 companies’ public profiles on the LinkedIn platform. The data acquisition process included the stages of the online searches for every country, the text mining of the relevant profiles, and finally the data analysis of several companies’ profile sections. Thus, some of the most valuable insights included companies’ geographical distribution, industry sectors, year of foundation, and descriptive statistics related to the followers and employees. Furthermore, we examine the “description” and “specialties” profile sections, in detail. Those sections contain free text data with a more detailed explanation of each company’s activities and background. From this perspective, we collected all those statements (keywords) having the “re-” prefix and could be considered as RE strategies, practices functions, conceptualizations, and approaches. The specific analysis resulted in 68 individual terms with 21 of them presenting the highest importance and frequency of occurrence in our dataset. For this reason, we introduce a 21 REs framework originating from the business profiles of all CE-related organizations globally. As expected, “recycle” has been by far the most popular strategy (2003 companies) in the context of CE, followed by “reduce” (1186), “renew” (733), and “reuse” (698) “recover”, and “renew” (Figure 1). We must highlight that Recycle cited an eigenvector equal to 1, which means that this is the highest score of all nodes, rendering it the most impactful, and the one also collaborating with the other most impactful RE-s.

Aya Abdelmeguid (Cranfield University, UK)
Mohamed Afy-Shararah (Cranfield University, UK)
Konstantinos Salonitis (Cranfield University, UK)
The shift towards circular fashion business models: The link between management practices, business strategies and consumers’ behaviour
PRESENTER: Aya Abdelmeguid

ABSTRACT. The fashion industry is a major industry globally, yet one of the most polluting industries around the world. It typically adapts a linear system approach of ‘take-make-dispose’ approach, which negatively impacts and depletes the scarce natural resources and energy sources. The criticality of these resources is rising especially with the growing population, intensifying environmental pressures and climate change which calls for immediate and effective actions. To address these negative consequences of the current fashion linear system, the shift to circular economy is necessary, however, it is very challenging.

Previous research (by the authors) has shown that effective management and leadership are crucial in addressing the challenges of implementing circular economy in the fashion industry. Moreover, it was found that the challenges related to the consumer are not significant nor are they the most pressing regarding the circular economy implementation, therefore should not be prioritized. These challenges would typically be addressed indirectly by targeting other challenges with higher levels of significance and influence. This finding is shown in the Interpretive Structural Modelling (ISM) shown in Figure 1, acknowledging that challenges placed at Level 1 are the highest in significance, and those placed at Level 4 are the lowest in significance.

Although these were the findings of the research, further investigation is required to develop an understanding of how consumer-related challenges interrelate and can be influenced by effective leadership and management for better implementation results. Therefore, this research identifies the different management practices and business strategies that positively influence consumers’ behaviour. This helps address the related challenges and facilitate the reduction of the negative impacts of the current linear fashion system through the adoption of circular fashion business models.

The research uses a mixed method approach: quantitative and qualitative. The quantitative data is collected through surveys to assess the consumers’ behaviour towards new circular fashion business models and to test the push-pull approach. The qualitative data is collected through in-depth semi-structured interviews with top-level management in the fashion industry to validate the management practices and business strategies found in the literature and the results of the surveys. The results obtained from the surveys and interviews are used in the identification of variables to develop a Causal Loop Diagram to link management practices and business strategies with customers’ behaviour for improved circular economy implementation results.

Simone Sehnem (Unoesc and Unisul, Brazil)
Edna Cassaro (Unoesc, Brazil)
Taís Trevisol Scherner (Unoesc, Brazil)
Circular Economy Transition in Brazilian Startups: looking for the business model and innovation level
PRESENTER: Simone Sehnem

ABSTRACT. The global society is gradually internalizing the premise that environmentally responsible products (Ferrández-Villena et al., 2022) can contribute to minimizing the negative externalities of consumer behavior (Abad-Segura et al., 2020). This transition is slow (Lucchetti et al., 2019) and is directly associated with the availability of products from cleaner production systems (Sehnem et al., 2019), healthier and more ecological products (Sehnem et al., 2022). Thus, the concept of Circular Economy (CE) is understood, recognized as an emerging theme that has generated broad interest in theoretical and empirical research (Bag et al., 2021). In this scenario, there is a demand for innovative and viable organizational models, capable of offering intelligent, simple products, services and solutions to their users. This premise establishes the relationship between the concept of organizational innovation, Camisón & Villar-López (2012), and the circular economy. To make this viable, it is necessary to incorporate new capabilities into organizations that direct companies towards sustainable innovation practices, Bag & Gupta (2017). This strengthens the importance and relevance of new studies that relate and expand empirical research on the themes of the circular economy and innovation. Despite efforts to understand how innovation occurs in Brazilian companies, it is still a challenge (Dávila et al., 2019), since most empirical research remains incomplete, under the analysis of contexts that require sustainable performance, Kashosi et al. (2020). This is also the case with disruptive innovations in new business models that encompass the circular economy (Sehnem et al., 2021). Thus, understanding the innovation practices considered essential for the circular economy to become viable in organizations is a fundamental factor, especially in the scenario of new business models, Sehnem et al. (2020). These are associated with understanding the genuine difference in innovation in the implementation of a new product or service, a new organizational routine, a new production technique, in a new organizational format, as cited by Camisón & López (2014), or in the formulation of creative and stimulating alternatives for users, in the context of the circular economy. The circular economy tends to have greater adherence to businesses and sectors that are receptive to innovation, that present feasibility for the implementation of transformational activities, and that are also planned for the insertion of their basic principles of continuous improvement (Blomsma et al., 2019). On the other hand, each industry can develop distinct activities, as not all companies are prepared to do so. Among the companies prepared and willing to incorporate the circular economy into their business model, there is a distinction between companies that work with the movement of resources in technical cycles and in biological cycles, in both cases, materials and resources are circulated in different logics (Lederer et al., 2020). This research is still timely because the literature on innovation is still fragmented in the context of sustainable innovation, and as suggested by Belezas & Daniel (2022), understanding how companies innovate in different contexts, such as the transition from linear to circular production models, is relevant. It is observed that the need to innovate is particularly urgent for companies located in emerging markets, composed of small companies that still allocate few resources to innovation, Dávila et al. (2019). In research conducted by Sehnem et al. (2021) in a literature review on the themes of the circular economy and innovation in recent years, it was identified that little emphasis is given to the mechanisms of implementing innovation in circular contexts and to the types of innovation relevant to the CE. From this perspective, the research question is delimited: How do the innovations adopted by manufacturers of environmentally friendly products have practices aligned with circular economy ? The research evidence shows that the segment of environmentally friendly products has the potential to internalize circular economy business models, as signaled by Abad-Segura et al. (2020). This is because there are several elements that are determinants of this context, namely, the existence of organic, vegan, natural, and healthy products; the exploitation of biodegradability potential; the use of clean energy; investment in actions that promote social inclusion and assistance to people in situations of social vulnerability and minorities; inclusion of initiatives for diversity, recovery of materials that would become waste, investment in products that generate therapeutic synergy and emotional balance; exploration of products focused on aromatherapy and care using natural products; commercialization of products related to cultural rituals (e.g. shamanic products); and support for relevant social causes (e.g. buying their products contributes to saving street pets). Such practices strengthen the argument of Li et al. (2022), which highlights the reduction of ecological consequences through the use of environmentally friendly products. The companies surveyed are manufacturers of environmentally friendly products that operate with purpose, committed to positively impacting the planet. They generate sustainable alternatives capable of providing intelligent products and solutions that allow people and businesses to live in harmony with the planet. They are companies managed by people with valuable attitudes and generators of positive contributions. They create mechanisms to connect people and promote the change they desire for their lives and for society. They offer products to customers that not only fulfill a function in daily life but are also sustainable, designed, conceived, and developed with respect for the environment, and at the end of their useful life are compostable or recyclable. Therefore, they are the basis for resource recovery (Cifuentes-Faura, 2022). Often, these are companies that care about causes they consider noble, such as animal protection, contribution to mitigating impacts, investment in actions to avoid the extinction of specific species, investment in initiatives that promote the inclusion of minorities, empowerment of people, and generation of income for communities underserved by public policies capable of providing a dignified life to them. This indicates that they prioritize aspects that go beyond economic growth (Yu et al., 2022). The main contribution of this research was to elucidate how innovation and CEBM align in manufacturers of environmentally friendly products. Although small-scale enterprises predominate, there is significant potential for sustainable impact generation in society. The bottom-up model has the potential to generate transformations. The findings have positive implications for segment managers, as they highlight the importance and role of innovation in the transition to circular economy. One limitation of this research is the existence of only one interview per company, which may generate bias in the results. Although secondary sources were sought to supplement information and support the analyses. As a recommendation for future studies, a survey is suggested to understand the characteristics and specificities of the environmentally friendly products sector regarding the types of innovation adopted that contribute to the strengthening of Circular Economy Business Models (CEBM).

Ioannis V Kyrtopoulos (Agricultural University of Athens, Greece)
Konstantinos G Arvanitis (Agricultural University of Athens, Greece)
Chrysanthos Maraveas (Agricultural University of Athens, Greece)
Sustainable waste management of greenhouse covers using 3D printing

ABSTRACT. With the advent of technology and increase in unhealthy consumption behaviour, production of waste; particularly the one harmful to the environment has significantly increased. Of major concern has been the piling of micro-plastics and the un-relentless release of greenhouse gases. These categories of waste have perilous impact to the environment considering their accumulative nature. For instance, microplastics have the tendency to accumulate in the food chain and the research has already proven that these waste materials are now in the human body courtesy of seafoods and other meat products. Production of these plastics has also been associated with the release of greenhouse gases majorly the carbon dioxide (Maraveas, 2017). Plastic is made from synthetic or semi-synthetic materials, all of which are derived from fossil fuels such as natural gases, crude oil, and coal. These raw materials have increased percentage of CO2 emissions and hence there is the need to address this challenge. The circular economy and plastic recycling are presented as crucial intervention measures on this problem. Recycling encompasses the conversion of waste materials into useful products. As a waste management approach, recycling is an ideal solution, more preferably when it is done at a local level. This is supported by Despeisse et al (2017) who state that local material may be better suited for recycling at the local instead of national or international level. This makes sure plastic waste is dealt with at the point of release and hence better intervention measures. However, a reasonable question which needs to be addressed is where and how the recycled materials should be used. Although there are many responses to this, 3D printing presents itself as an ideal use of recycled materials. This method is designed to be more environmentally friendly with an overall reduced cost for remanufacturing. 3D printing in local stores for individual use can also significantly reduce transportation fuel consumption. 3D printing comes with a plethora of advantages, mostly concentrated on low carbon dioxide emissions, environmental protection, and reduced cost of production at the micro-scale level. Cost is essentially reduced because the raw materials are freely available for use without compromise on the quality of the final product. For instance, it has been proven that the use of a filament recycled twenty times through an extrusion-based process minimally affect the tensile strength and modulus of PLA. Data also shows that up to 90% of plastics could be reused several times without their inherent characteristics being affected. Even though the advantages of 3D printing are many (Maraveas et al, 2022), a couple of disadvantages also exist. After recycling several times, the material (s) used by 3D printers tend to lose most of its (their) properties and strength. Essentially, multiple extrusion of polymers has a strong influence on their change in viscosity, molecular weight, and breaking strength. Therefore, there is a limited number of times for which a material can be recycled without losing its favourable features. Another drawback of 3D printing is inadequate technical knowledge amongst designers. The literature describing design guidelines suitable for a circular economy suggests necessary changes to incorporate the application of materials suitable for recycling (Despeisse et. al. 2017). However, majority of designers lack the technical know-how in making the appropriate adjustments. Although the adjustments made in 3D printing can also significantly minimize cost of configurations, this does not necessarily minimize manufacturing energy consumption, thereby cost minimizations in commercial manufacturing can result in negative externalities. The current state of the art has a small but growing number of entrepreneurs who are working within the 3D printing ecosystem to create a circular economy, which is based on the Modularity, reuse, upgrade, refurbishment, and remanufacturing principles. From the scientific perspective at present, 3D printing waste is not a big problem. The analysis also shows no economic benefits from recycling of materials, and the cost of the recycled product depends on the market price of the originally manufactured filament. The players in this sector essentially convert plastic waste using 3D printing technology via a four-stage process; washing and drying of plastic waste, shredding, filament-forming, and 3D printing. Although it is possible to recycle plastic waste in different methods such as use of chemicals, mechanical approach, energy, and re-extrusion, the Closed-loop recycling by 3D printing is the most promising considering the nanotechnology applied can absorb or degrade pollutants. Future studies in this area should focus on discovering more elements with better properties to be used in 3D printing. More research should also be carried out to determine the most optimal and refined recycling approach that can be applied on a small-scale level including in homes. Lastly, studies should be carried out to determine the most effective ways of increasing the speed of 3D printing, as well as smoothly engaging the printing methods including heat temperature, nozzle size, and flow.

14:00-16:00 Session 5C: Section co-organized with the IWA SG on Statistics and Economics
Ed Smeets (EDMADI BV, Netherlands)
Location: Room 3
Francisco Ramos (ERSAR, Portugal)
Alexandra Cunha (ERSAR, Portugal)
Margarida Monte (ERSAR, Portugal)
New recommendation for the wastewater reuse in Portugal

ABSTRACT. The traditional ‘take-make-use-waste’ global economic model is not sustainable, and with the current global demand for natural resources exceeding our planet’s regenerative capacity by a factor of 1.75 (according to the World Bank), action needs to be taken, otherwise our planet will not be able to provide enough resources for the continuous demand increase. According to the United Nations projections, world’s population could grow from 8 billion people in 2022 to 9.7 billion in 2050, which creates an additional pressure on the existing resources. As such, it is of paramount importance to make circular business models mainstream and widely adopted, instead of having them circumscribed to only a few economic agents. One of the fundamental areas where circular economy should occur is in the water sector. According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), only 3% of the world’s water is fresh water and, with the current consumption rate, WWF predicts that 70% of the world’s population may face water shortages by 2025. Thus, all relevant stakeholders have the obligation (economic and moral) to create mechanisms that enhance resources management and promote a sustainable usage of this valuable resource.

Since fresh water is scarce, its consumption should be limited to usages that are strictly necessary and do not have any feasible alternative. However, fresh water is, among many other activities, being used in agricultural and landscape irrigation, industrial operations and non-potable urban activities (e.g. waste containers and street washing, firefighting) which could instead be using reused wastewater. This is particularly relevant to countries like Portugal, where water shortages and droughts have increased dramatically. According to the Portuguese weather institute (IPMA), 2022 was the hottest year since 1931 and during the first 9 months of the year, 80% of its territory was facing a severe extreme draught (the most alarming category of IPMA’s scale). This fact simply demonstrates the harsh reality that is likely going to get worse in the future. World’s temperature is rising, and according to the World Meteorologic Organization, there is a 50% likelihood of global temperature temporarily reaching the +1.5ºC threshold for at least one of the next five years, and this probability is increasing with time. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the raise of global warming is expected to contribute to increasing the frequency of draught episodes and of heavy precipitation, disrupting the water cycle.

The Mediterranean region, where Portugal is located, is expected to encounter changes in rainfall patterns, with potential decreases in annual precipitation and increased variability, exacerbating water scarcity. Even though Portugal has a lot to gain from the usage of reused wastewater, its adoption remains negligible, and there hasn’t been a significant evolution over time.

There are several factors that help justify the weak adoption of wastewater reuse in Portugal, namely the fact that this kind of technology requires significant amounts of investment and there are not enough financial incentives for the potential users. In 2007 ERSAR developed a recommendation whose goal was to clarify the regulated entities about the specificities of the production and usage of reused wastewater. Despite ERSAR’s efforts, only in 2019 was published the first Portuguese legal framework for wastewater reuse defining the minimum requirements and establishing the permitting process. With the growing awareness and importance about this topic, ERSAR considered it was important to create a new recommendation with a set of orientations regarding wastewater reuse, with a particular focus on the economic regulation of this activity.

Consequently, the subject of this presentation focuses precisely on ERSAR’s new recommendation, highlighting the rules for the tariff definition, namely that a) it shouldn’t be cross-subsidized, b) it must be financially self-sustainable, and c) the entities providing this service must have independent accounting records from their other services.

Besides the rules described, the tariff must fully reflect all the incremental costs, specifically investment costs, operating expenditures, financial and tax expenses, and the capital return while deducting any subsidies that may be provided. For these costs, only the portion considered efficient for regulatory purposes must be considered in the tariff setting. Additionally, to define a variable tariff, the volumes of recycled water to be provided must be estimated.

On this recommendation, ERSAR also points out the importance of having written contracts, signed by the producers and the users, with a set of information, such as the maximum volume of reclaimed water that the producer is obliged to provide, the minimum volume of reused water that the user is obliged to buy, the minimum contract duration and applicable conditions in case of early termination, how the tariffs are updated, the conditions for monitoring the quality of the recycled water provided (sampling location and frequency), and others.

Even though progress is being made in Portugal, this recommendation is one of the first steps towards the goal of mainstreaming the usage and production of reused wastewater. As any new paradigm, it comes with a few obstacles that must be overcome. Some of the most relevant are: a) applying the correct pricing – the willingness to pay for this resource is limited, since users have cheaper sources of water available; b) distance – the length between treated wastewater production sites and potential users can become a barrier, as it may significantly increase the distribution costs; c) safety – since we are dealing with reused wastewater, it must be assured that the quality of the reclaimed water has the minimum risk of jeopardizing public health and the environment; d)  public acceptance – without public awareness and acceptance, the demand for reused wastewater will remain scarce, not creating enough incentives for producers to invest in it, hence creating a vicious cycle. These are some of the topics that must be thoroughly discussed in the near future to ensure reused wastewater becomes a relevant alternative source of water in Portugal.

Augustin Boer (BDO Business Advisory SRL, Romania)
Doru Popa (Compania Apa Brasov, Romania)
Circular Economy in the Romanian Water Sector

ABSTRACT. The paper analyzes the actual status of implementation of circular economy in the Romania water and wastewater sector and identifies the future opportunities and challenges. The Romanian water sector has a very low level of implementation of circular economy principles, and they will face major challenges in the future due to this. There is a national strategy on circular economy that also covers the water and wastewater sector and the Regulator started to analyze the water operator also from circular economy point of view. In this context, the water sector will have to develop a strategy in the future to comply will all these legal and regulatory requirements

Lledó Castellet-Viciano (University of Valencia, Spain)
Vicent Hernández-Chover (University of Valencia, Spain)
Águeda Bellver-Domingo (University of Valencia, Spain)
Francesc Hernández-Sancho (University of Valencia, Spain)
Biofactories and Circular Economy Models: Wastewater Treatment Plant 4.0

ABSTRACT. The circular economy (CE) and digital technologies are topics that generate great interest in many sectors of the economy. Both concepts, CE and technology, have a certain symbiosis. Firstly, digital technologies can accelerate the transition to a greener economy, an economy that ensures resource sustainability and encourages CE-based practices, and secondly, the circular economy generates new business opportunities by driving the development of new digital technologies. The growing demand for sustainable and low-waste solutions has driven innovation in printing technologies, robotics, and technology. In conclusion, the symbiosis between CE and digital technologies can lead to more efficient and sustainable management of resources and innovation in new sustainable technologies. Currently, there are many sectors that require the use of non-renewable resources for their operation and, at the same time, generate a large number of emissions and waste with a high environmental impact. Of the various resources required, energy, water, and the extraction of raw materials represent the greatest challenges for society, and as the population increases, so does the scarcity of non-renewable resources. Such is the situation that public administrations are taking measures to promote not only the conservation of resources but also reuse and the circular economy. This is the case of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which comprises a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that seek the social and economic development of territories and the conservation of the environment. The United Nations (UN) predicts that half of the world's population will live in water-stressed areas by 2025 and that the world will face a global water deficit of between 40% and 60% by 2030. In this sense, the urban water cycle sector is a source of resources that, beyond being necessary and essential for life, represents a strategic axis that facilitates the economic development of countries. Industry, agriculture and livestock require fresh water to develop their production and transformation activities and, in turn, the wastewater they generate, with the necessary treatments, can contribute to offsetting the challenges of resource scarcity by adopting circular economy principles to recover and reintroduce the recovered resources into the economy. CE in a wastewater treatment environment focuses on recovering resources from wastewater and reintroducing recovered products into the local economy to offset operating costs. Recovered products directly displace the extraction of those same resources from the natural environment. Digital technologies make it possible to transform and organize the need for resources by the different economic sectors in order to optimize the treatments to be carried out. Thus, the sensorization and subsequent monitoring of the assets that make up these infrastructures makes it possible to optimize the recovery of resources contained in the wastewater: fertilizers (phosphorus and nitrogen), sludge, biogas, energy, salt, and to organize the demand for the necessary by-products, and the water needs for the processes: industry, agriculture, ecological flows, irrigation of forest areas and recovery of aquifers, thus modifying the linear dynamics to transform it into a circular one. In order to encourage and adopt circular economy models, new technologies make it possible to know the exact wastewater flows long before they reach the plant, in addition to the volume of water, and to monitor the chemical characteristics of the wastewater, which makes it possible to optimize the required treatments and to project the resources to be generated, mainly non-conventional water with different qualities, fertilizers, energy and sludge. In a dynamic system, the prices at which the resources generated by these infrastructures will be offered must compete with conventional resources (increasingly expensive to obtain) and with the existing demand from other sectors. Thus, prices may vary with the aim, firstly, of covering the costs generated and, secondly, of achieving benefits that make the economic model sustainable. In this context, water reclamation and reuse is identified as key component of water resources management. However, economic aspects, in terms of tariff design and cost recovery, represent a major barrier to incentivising its use. In this paper, the authors analyse these aspects and propose a tariff that combines cost recovery, an incentive to use reclaimed water, and other relevant aspects that guarantee the success of water reuse projects. With the aim of developing a reference procedure in the sector, an approach is made to the industrial sector. This research offers valuable results that will be useful for establishing future strategies to promote the use of reclaimed water in industrial environments.

Vicent Hernández-Chover (University of Valencia, Spain)
Águeda Bellver-Domingo (University of Valencia, Spain)
Lledó Castellet-Viciano (University of Valencia, Spain)
Francesc Hernandez-Sancho (University of Valencia, Spain)
Conventional technologies and natural solutions in wastewater treatment: economic analysis

ABSTRACT. World population growth is associated with an increase in the demand for water. The consequences of this increase are twofold; on the one hand, it endangers the water balance of the ecosystem; and, on the other, it considerably increases the volume of wastewater generated. These aspects jeopardize the sustainability of the urban water cycle, as increasingly costly treatment is required both to treat the freshwater and to treat the wastewater we produce. Conventional infrastructures require a large amount of resources to carry out the necessary treatments, beyond economic and financial resources, materials are required for the construction of these infrastructures, such as: concrete, steel, plastics and others. In spite of this, an increasing number of infrastructures are being built without evaluating the convenience of other alternatives that may be less harmful to the environment. This economic model does not take into account that resources are limited and, consequently, can be depleted. In addition, these water treatment systems consume large amounts of energy, which is related to a higher generation of greenhouse gas emissions. In contrast, the circular economy proposes alternatives to move from the current linear model to a model of continuous reuse, to a system where alternative solutions make it possible to guarantee the sustainability of resources. In this sense, achieving sustainability in the urban water sector is part of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and targets. The SDGs were established in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly as part of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development. Specifically, SDG 6 focuses on ensuring the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all, one of the points it seeks to address is precisely to improve water quality and, in this sense, efforts in wastewater treatment allow increasing the efficiency of the sector as a whole, since a quality effluent can be used for ecosystem restoration, among other uses. Regarding to wastewater treatment, wastewater treatment is essential to ensure the quality of effluent discharged into the environment. Current treatment systems allow for the subsequent use of the effluent. In this way, the wastewater treatment sector can be considered as a non-conventional source of water, allowing the pressure on a scarce resource such as water to be reduced. Water regeneration can be carried out both with conventional treatments and with natural treatments such as artificial wetlands. In the latter case, artificial wetlands present a natural solution since they allow wastewater treatment to be carried out using natural resources and even using waste generated in other stages of the urban water cycle as resources, such as the sludge generated in the drinking water treatment phase. In this particular case, the use of aluminum-based sludge obtained in drinking water treatment plants is analyzed. This is an unavoidable waste generated in the DWTPs when aluminum salts are used as a chemical coagulant for treatment. At present, this waste is disposed of in landfills, thus increasing the costs associated with water treatment. Among the various reuse alternatives is the possibility of taking advantage of the adsorbent capacity that these sludges still maintain before their final disposal, specifically in the wastewater treatment stage. This represents a substantial advance in terms of circular economy and water because it would be fulfilling a dual function: firstly, it would provide a higher quality effluent that could be used for other purposes and, secondly, transforming a waste, such as the sludge obtained at the drinking water treatment stage, into a resource would reduce a whole series of costs associated with the current treatment of this sludge. From both a technical and economic point of view, the choice of the appropriate treatment, conventional or natural, involves a series of investment and operating costs. Among the investment costs, we find mainly civil works, equipment and piping, and among the operating costs, energy, reagents, personnel, maintenance and waste management. In addition, in order to be able to objectively compare different alternatives, it is important to quantify the benefits generated by using a waste as a resource, as in the case of wetlands. The avoided impacts must be identified and evaluated in order to provide complete information on the existing alternatives. In this paper, the authors analyze these aspects in order to define an investment and planning policy for wastewater treatment. With the aim of developing a reference procedure in the sector, an approach that includes, in addition to the technical and economic aspects of the different solutions, the influence of aspects framed in the circular economy.

Manfred Strasser (Vienna University of Technology, Austria)
Fabian Holly (Vienna University of Technology, Austria)
Barna Gal (Fraunhofer Austria Research GmbH, Austria)
Sebastian Schlund (Vienna University of Technology, Austria)
Approach towards model-based implementation of remanufacturing using the example of automated guided vehicle industry
PRESENTER: Fabian Holly

ABSTRACT. Our planet has a finite number of natural resources and the steadily increased consumption of these threatens our very existence in the climate crisis that prevails today. There are different strategies for the implementation of circular economy, where one of these possibilities is called remanufacturing. In this paper, a procedure model is developed, which supports companies during the introduction of remanufacturing processes. The result is a method for manufacturing companies and the implementation process of this model takes place step by step. The tool covers the critical areas for remanufacturing like product, production system, customer, business model as well as ecological, economic, and social impacts. The systematic application of the six-step process model is based on methods and tools that are well known in the industry. An excerpt of the tools mentioned is: PDCA cycle, value stream analysis, life cycle assessment, evaluation matrices, business model canvas and profit margin calculation. The effectiveness of the procedure model has been evaluated based on a company that develops and produces intelligent, driverless transport systems. In general, under critical evaluation the developed procedure model fulfills the objectives.

Iosif Kapellakis (Neapolis University Pafos, Cyprus)
Vasileios Tzanakakis (Hellenic Mediterranean University, Greece)
Emmanouil Kabourakis (Hellenic Mediterranean University, Greece)
Circular Economy and Olive Mill Wastewater. From Production to Direct Land Application
PRESENTER: Iosif Kapellakis

ABSTRACT. Olive mill wastewater (OMW) is the most important by-product generated during olive oil extraction from the olive fruits. OMW poses a serious environmental concern due to its vast produced quantities, during the rain and for a limited time period, and its high phytotoxicity and degree of organic pollution. To mitigate this threat, there are two management approaches referring to the treatment of OMW: a) the conventional one, consisting of a combination of physical, chemical, and biological processes at specific rates, and b) the natural treatment based on biological treatment systems. Currently, concerning the second approach, land application of OMW is mainly referred to high loading rates that aim to evaluate the treatment potential of soil and the potential environmental effects. However, up till now there is limited knowledge on the adoption of a zero-waste management approach that investigates the effects of recycling the OMW produced from an orchard on the soil properties of this orchard. Research was conducted in the Messara river basin, Crete, Greece. Olive fruits from eight olive orchards located in hill and plain agroecological zones were harvested and milled in a nearby three-phase centrifugal type olive mill. The resulted OMW immediately after its production was applied in these orchards. Soil samples from two different depths were collected one day, one month, and two months after OMW application. Analysis of the results shows that the adoption of the generic circular economy principles in OMW land application onto the olive orchards does not cause any adverse effects on the soil properties.

16:00-16:30Coffee Break
16:30-18:30 Session 6A: Applied digital systems and circular economy indicators
Dimitrios Georgakopoulos (Swinburne University of Tehcnology, Australia)
Location: Room 1
Paraskevi Apalaki (Democritus University of Thrace, Greece)
Aristi Karagkouni (Democritus University of Thrace, Greece)
Theodoros Konstantinidis (Democritus University of Thrace, Greece)
Aikaterini Alexiou-Chatzaki (Democritus University of Thrace, Greece)
Dimitrios Dimitriou (Democritus University of Thrace, Greece)
Digital Healthcare: Moving Towards a Quality Global Medical Care System

ABSTRACT. E-health, M-health and Tele-health are contemporary terms added to the medical dictionary. The extreme evolution of technology opens new doors in the globalization of medical practices and open data. The pandemic that we are still fighting accelerated the procedures of digitalizing health, although this concept has been introduced to the stakeholders years now. The digital healthcare represents a multidisciplinary co-existence of technology and healthcare that incorporates software, hardware and electronic services in the health system. Mobile apps, electronic health records, wearable devices, telemedicine and other tech-oriented services tend to alter the conventional medical practice. It is a patient-oriented movement that involves practitioners, researchers, application developers, medical device manufacturers, distributors and pharmaceuticals. Despite the fact that there are more than 95 different definitions to explain what digital healthcare means, all studies result in the same major aspects that this technological revolution will affect. The improvement of medical quality as also the equity in medical services among all citizens, despite their financial status or geographical region, could be placed on top of the list of ultimate goals. Moreover, the upload of massive health data and case studies will enable not only to boost accuracy and efficiency of treatments and diagnosis, but to strengthen also personalized medicine by advances in information technology (IT) and automated intelligence (AI) as also machine learning (ML) approaches. Investors are already attracted in financially support the digitalization of medicine, raising the expectations and enlarging the borders of following more radical steps. If bioethics, regulations and healthcare insurance policies, privacy and security standards affairs will not be strictly instituted and followed, the future is very promising for a human-centered, high performance global digital health care system.

Dimitrios Georgakopoulos (Swinburne University of Technology, Australia)
Sustainable Manufacturing via digital twins and artificial intelligence-supported closed loop production

ABSTRACT. Improving production efficiency, resilience, and sustainability has remained an elusive goal in manufacturing despite significant advances in recycling, robotics, and factory automation technology. The fourth industrial revolution—also referred to as Industry 4.0—sets out critical technological directions for addressing these challenges via data-driven digital manufacturing (DM) solutions incorporating novel IoT and computing technologies including AI/Machine Learning (ML) and digital twins (DTs) of complex physical industrial machine, products, and people in production. Although the Industry 4.0 vision and directions are supported by major manufacturing companies and technology providers (for example, Siemens, Bosch, and IBM), its technology base line is not mature enough to address these needs.

Jointly with industry partners, we are developing and evaluating DM solutions that combine: 1) Novel DTs that digitally represent complex industrial machines, products including the materials used to make them, and people involved in production; and 2) Production dependency and constraint-aware ML (dcML) models that use information from the DTs to predict production outcomes (e.g., production efficiency, product quality/consistency, energy consumption, etc.). The combination of these novel technologies allows manufacturing lines to significantly improve production efficiency and sustainability by predicting production outcomes/issues and making real-time improvements/corrections. We present use cases of DM-based solutions that have achieved significant productivity and sustainability improvements in food, steel, and composites manufacturing in Australia.

Malahat Ghoreishi (LAB University of Applied Sciences, Finland)
Geetika Jain (Keele University, UK)
Michael Hanf (Taival Advisory Oy, Finland)
Utilization of Artificial Intelligence in Circular Food Industry Processes

ABSTRACT. Approximately one third of food is wasted globally through the food value chain. Production and consumption of food such as meat and dairy products are generating huge waste which affects significantly on sustainable food system. Food resource loss has been a huge concern with the global food waste increasing to $2.6 trillion and 6.8% of global emissions. To increase resource and energy efficiency circular economy (CE) model has been introduced as a solution to achieve sustainability goals. The transition towards a CE in most cases requires change in infrastructures and innovation of business model. Digital technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) can enable circular solutions by collecting, storing, and analyzing data generated within production and logistics processes. Utilizing data insights can help in making more efficient operations in closed-loop food systems. The research concerning the CE for food industry has focused mostly on manufacturing, production and waste management. However, utilization of AI in traceability, resource and energy optimization in food processes requires more research both in theory and empirically. Therefore, this article focuses on a food by-product processing and recycling company focused on the rendering of meat industry side streams in Finland. The company increases the level of circularity while lowering the environmental negative impacts by ensuring that the alteration of by-products from meat productions into renewable industrial products. To optimize the logistics operations, real-time data is collected, and AI-based models are developed to leverage the data. Real-time data enables monitoring the status of the materials and when leveraged by AI ensures that collected materials will reach the company as fresh as possible. In addition, utilizing AI models will help the company to overcome the challenge of large data streams storage. In this regard, AI models enable resource and energy use as well as product quality by optimizing production parameters.

Manuel Pfitzner (FH Campus Wien, Austria)
Elisabeth Jahn (FH Campus Wien, Austria)
Astrid Fajtak (FH Campus Wien, Austria)
The Impact of Design for Recycling on the Current PET Recycling Potential: A Market Analysis Based on the Austrian Retail Sector
PRESENTER: Manuel Pfitzner

ABSTRACT. Plastic packaging is disposed of on a daily basis around the world, and the amount of waste generated is correspondingly high. The recycling rates for plastic packaging in Austria are currently 25%. By 2030, these must be increased to 55% in accordance with the EU Circular Economy Package. So far, apart from PET beverage bottles, no plastic packaging is recycled in a closed loop. Since the design of PET packaging has an impact on the sorting and recycling process, there is a direct link to recycling potential. How recyclable designs can look like is addressed e.g. in the Circular Packaging Design Guideline of the FH Campus Wien. Whether these recommendations are implemented in practice is verified by a market screening of PET packaging. Based on a market research, the most important retail chains on the Austrian market were identified. One store in each of four retail chains was sampled. For this purpose, the stores were visited and all products were checked for the recycling code. If no recycling code was available, the material was identified with a handheld near infrared spectroscopy (NIR) device. A method was developed for packaging analysis based on existing literature. Properties such as packaging color, weight of the individual components, as well as the type of labeling are collected in the process. Above all, colour and labelling are important parameters in the recycling and sorting process that can strongly influence the quality of recycling material. Glues or adhesives play a crucial role in recycling. If it is not fully removeable problems in the recycling process may occur and quality declines in the recycling material are likely. First results are already available. These are evaluations of the packaging types, the weight proportions of the packaging components, the color and the labeling. Of a total of 253 samples, 39% are trays with food material, 31% are bottles with food material and 30% are bottles with non-food material. About 80% of the bottles analyzed (n=152) are not colored. In the case of tray samples (n=99), even more than 90% are transparent and have no colour additives (figure 2). 70% of the bottles have labels applied with adhesives. For the trays, it is about 64% on which adhesives could be identified. In terms of coloration more than 90% are without colour additives, while the clear bottle samples are only ~80%. The second important observation in this analysis is the usage of glue, as shown in figure 3. 70% of the analyzed bottles and 64% of the trays use adhesives for labelling. Overall, considering design for recycling guidelines, the abandonment of colours can be seen as positive. In further analysis it is necessary to observe the other packaging components, because figure 2 only shows the colouration of the main packaging part (tray or bottle without lids or foils). With the method of the market analysis it is not possible to make any conclusions on the removability of the used adhesives, nevertheless the usage of adhesive labelling can be seen as negative for the recycling process, particularly glues used for refrigerated products are considered as not or difficult removeable. Therefore, adhesive removability test will be the next step in our research.

Ben Purvis (University of Sheffield, UK)
Andrea Genovese (University of Sheffield, UK)
Tommaso Calzolari (University of Sheffield, UK)
Consensus and contestation: reflections on the development of an indicator framework for a just transition to a circular economy
PRESENTER: Andrea Genovese

ABSTRACT. Approaches to sustainability assessment are as multitudinous and varied as attempts to define sustainability itself (Pope et al., 2017). Slowly evolving from the diffusion of impact assessment into governance & management spheres from the 1960s, sustainability assessment has emerged as a broad paradigm, imagining itself as a core tool for transitioning towards a normatively conceived ‘better’ society. Thus, we may understand sustainability assessment as an ex ante tool for “directing decision-making towards sustainability” (Pope et al., 2017: p205). The openness of sustainability as an umbrella concept or ‘empty signifier’ (Brown, 2016), presents issues and opportunities for assessment: on the one hand, much time is sunk into working out what sustainability might mean before considering how to assess it; on the other hand, it must be recognised that competing normative ideals such as eco-socialism or corporate green growth can shape their own assessment methods. The case of the Circular Economy (CE), also an umbrella concept characterised by multiple and competing narratives (Lowe & Genovese, 2022), occupies a similar state, with the literature on sustainability assessment for a CE rapidly expanding whilst displaying a lack of consensus on which metrics should be considered for measuring the transition towards circular futures (Calzolari et al., 2022). Indicator-based approaches remain central to the sustainability assessment paradigm. In Purvis & Genovese (2023) we identify indicators as “a conceptual artefact that is intended to quantify an attribute relating to the state of the system under examination”, further emphasising that “we view the construction or choice of an indicator as inherently political and embedded in normative value systems”. The contested nature of indicators is emphasised with respect to a series of technical challenges and epistemological limitations referenced in the broad body of literature making use of indicators for sustainability assessment. A dual purpose for indicators can also be observed in the literature, where they are conceived in terms of method as a core category of ‘assessment tool’ (Gasparatos & Scolobig, 2012), as well as operationalisable representations of concepts which reflect a given discourse (Pope et al., 2017). This latter understanding emphasises the political nature of indicators which embed value systems within their framing and definition. Thus, not only are indicators useful for measuring stuff, they communicate what we think is important to measure. With the contested nature and role of indicators in mind, this work presents the exploration of an approach to derive a set of indicators intended to reflect a just transition to a circular economy. Here we complement the theoretical work presented in Purvis & Genovese (2023) with an empirical exercise which attempts to follow the methodological steps outlined for the creation of an indicator dashboard. Such an approach follows what is perhaps a dominant approach for selecting indicators within the literature. To select suitable indicators, we began with a systematic literature review of CE indicators for supply chains (published as Calzolari et al., 2022). This was followed by an ‘expert’ survey, and a ‘co-production workshop’ intended to understand views of CE scholars and practitioners on suitable indicators and framing. Whilst critical of reductionist methods, we took an open and experimental approach (similar to the one proposed by Ottaviani et al., 2021) aiming to build consensus across the group of scholars in the production of this indicator dashboard by incorporating a Delphi-like approach. This process was intended to refine a draft set of relevant indicator categories for keeping track of the transition towards a CE within supply chains and production networks. The qualitative feedback we elicited during this selection process echoed many of the objections and challenges to an indicator approach observed within the literature, cast doubt on the suitability of this approach, and indeed the use of a dashboard of indicators itself for keeping track of the transition towards a CE. This led us to posit the question: should we have done things better, or should we have done things different (Purvis & Genovese, 2023)? This paper is thus both a presentation of an empirical approach to develop an indicator dashboard for a just transition to a circular economy, and a reflection on the challenges and barriers we experienced. Similar to Berry et al. (2022), we consequently challenge the suggestion that consensus is necessary and desirable for operationalising the CE concept. We emphasise the inherently political nature of the CE, and reject the possibility of an objective methodological approach.

16:30-18:30 Session 6B: Sustainable projects and circular design
Eleni Iacovidou (Brunel University London, UK)
Location: Room 2
Lindsay Parker (King's College London, UK)
Fashion rental and the Circular Economy

ABSTRACT. The negative environmental and social impacts of the fashion industry have been well documented. The proliferation of low-cost, low quality fast fashion garments coupled with an increasingly rapid turnover of trend cycles, has resulted in shortened product life cycles and excessive textile waste. There are growing calls for alternatives to current, linear (buy-use-dispose) models of fashion consumption. Circular business models which potentially slow resource loops by extending the life cycle of clothing have been identified as key for transitioning to a more sustainable fashion industry.

Fashion rental services are becoming established in the UK as an alternative, and more circular, business model. The format, price point and type of clothing offered varies between companies, but each allows consumers short term access to a range of fashion garments which can be worn once and returned. There is thus far limited research of fashion rental in this context. This paper explores fashion rental in the UK and the challenges and opportunities for rental as a circular business model.

Mariana C. Chrispim (Halmstad University, Sweden)
Marie Mattsson (Halmstad University, Sweden)
Pia Ulvenblad (Halmstad University, Sweden)
Benefits and challenges of adopting Circular Economy: the perceptions of company’s managers in Sweden

ABSTRACT. How organisations perceive and implement Circular Economy (CE) is a complex issue and is influenced by several factors such as local contexts. For example, previous research has showed that in general companies lack knowledge and skills about CE. So, further research is necessary about how people from different organisations perceive CE. Perception means the image and level of knowledge that they have about it, but also the benefits that they perceive from the adoption of circular strategies as well as barriers that hinder the implementation. The objective of this research was to identify the perception and understanding of representatives from water-intensive industries and bio-based sector regarding CE concept. The methodology was based on a survey and interviews with the representatives from 10 companies in Halland, Sweden. The main results are that CE is understood mainly as concerned with environmental dimension. Economic benefits are perceived as the main benefit from the incorporation of circular strategies. The main barriers are lack of financial resources; time availability; lack of interest of stakeholders and their awareness about circular matters; and high complexity of CE view or lack of information and technical knowledge. In general, the results indicate that although they consider CE important and perceive many potential benefits from it, there is still limited involvement of companies in Sweden with CE implementation.

Carolina Bettker Vasconcelos (Maastricht University, Netherlands)
Klaus Henning (umlaut – part of Accenture, Germany)
Yvonne van der Meer (Maastricht University, Netherlands)
Uncovering Practical Challenges in Sustainability Projects: A Case Study of a Multinational Company

ABSTRACT. To facilitate the business transformation towards more sustainable outcomes, academics have focused their efforts on developing tools to assist companies in change processes. Overall, the majority of these tools focus on high-level management or technical and reporting aspects. However, there are limited frameworks and academic research focused on challenges that employees encounter while implementing sustainability-related corporate projects – especially at multinational corporations. Therefore, an explorative multimethod case study was conducted in partnership with a multinational company to address the following research questions: What are the most pressing challenges employees face in sustainability-related projects? What are the practical implications of such challenges? From June 2022 until March 2023, nine in-depth interviews were performed and 39 survey responses were obtained. The results indicate that the challenges employees face in sustainability projects are mostly related to the management of trade-offs, competition for resources and the existence of different knowledge levels about sustainability. In conclusion, this study offers a practitioner's perspective to academia, thus providing valuable insights for scholars in various fields who are working on the development of practical frameworks for promoting collaboration and business transformation towards more sustainable outcomes.

Marc van den Berg (University of Twente, Netherlands)
Daan Schraven (TU Delft, Netherlands)
Catherine De Wolf (ETH Zurich, Switzerland)
Hans Voordijk (University of Twente, Netherlands)
Interpretative phenomenological analysis of circular design experiences

ABSTRACT. Learning from the experience of leading designers is invaluable in accelerating the transition to a circular built environment. The construction industry consumes about half of the total amount of raw materials extracted annually and generates around a third of all solid waste (Gálvez-Martos et al., 2018). This can lead to socio-economic and environmental problems, such as scarcity, biodiversity loss and spatial issues. A growing body of research suggests that these problems can be traced back to the way constructions are being designed. That is, design typically revolves around stakeholder needs with little consideration for the end-of-life phase and the availability of materials. Circular economy studies suggest an alternative approach based on principles such as 'designing out' waste, differentiating between consumable and technical materials and relying on renewable energy. The implications of such guiding principles are profound yet appear challenging to implement in design projects. Understanding the experiences of leading designers could thus provide insights to others seeking to implement circularity practices. This research, therefore, aims to address these challenges by conducting an interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) of circular design experiences. IPA is a relatively recent, yet increasingly popular, phenomenological approach to examine how people experience a particular phenomenon. The approach has its origins in the psychology domain, for which Smith (1996) developed a set of flexible guidelines for the detailed examination of personal lived experiences and the meanings these particular experiences hold for individuals (Smith & Osborn, 2015). Following the recommendations of Gill (2014), we selected IPA from a family of phenomenological approaches based on our shared epistemological and ontological assumptions as well as the nature of our research aim. Unstructured interviews with ten frontrunning designers comprise our primary source of data. Given our interest in a relatively new phenomenon, we selected designers that were involved in Platform CB’23, a leading Dutch community of practice that formulates working agreements on certain circular building-related topics. The first three authors actively participated in one of this platform’s so-called action teams, responsible for writing an industry guideline on circular design (see: Platform CB'23, 2021). Ten designers, also participating in the action team, were invited for an (online) interview. We asked each participant a single, open-ended question – “could you please tell us about your experiences with circular design?” – and then probed to let them run with it. The interviews were all recorded and transcribed verbatim. For the analysis, we employed IPA’s flexible guidelines to iterate between the three steps of: multiple reading and making notes; transforming notes into emergent themes; and seeking relationships and clustering themes (Pietkiewicz & Smith, 2014). Our interpretative phenomenological analysis has resulted in four themes that illustrate how designers make sense of their own circular design experiences: proclaiming responsibility towards the environment; materializing future-oriented solutions; dealing with a multi-headed monster; and orchestrating an ecosystem. First, the designers proclaim responsibility towards the environment through promoting resource awareness. Second, they are concerned with materializing future-oriented solutions through selecting design strategies that facilitate multi-cycle materials usage. Third, they feel like they need to deal with a multi-headed monster because of particular circularity challenges. Fourth, the designers reflect on themselves as orchestrators of an entire ecosystem in which solutions are being developed together with various other partnering firms. These four themes are, accordingly, associated with the experiences of leading designers in circular design projects. Mapping circular design experiences provides insights that can be beneficial to others. Earlier research studies have presented a variety of circular design strategies, challenges, tools and frameworks (Moreno et al., 2016) – but overlooked designers’ lived experiences. Instead, we interpreted the narrative accounts of pioneering designers interpreting their own experiences, which is in line with the ‘double hermeneutic’ style of any IPA study (Smith & Osborn, 2015). The four themes that we found reflect what it is like to engage in circular design. Circular design appears to be a relatively new phenomenon in which designers, driven by internalized resource awareness, activate manufacturers and other supply chain partners to develop material – not energy – solutions for certain construction problems, yet encounter various circularity challenges in doing so (related to, for instance, regulatory frameworks, information flows and impact assessments). Other researchers and practitioners can learn from the experiences of pioneers to make better decisions and prepare for challenges in navigating the circularity transition.

Greg Schneider-Maunoury (Université Sorbonne Paris Nord, France)
Tax optimisation and sustainability : proposal of a research agenda

ABSTRACT. Taxation issue is a blind spot in sustainable investment and ESG. Many data have been collected at national level on tax optimisation and avoidance. Corporate data and analysis of this phenomenon has been so far focused on tax avoidance. However, through the progressive implementation of more stringent regulations, sustainable investment, through ESG analysis, has been strongly improving in the recent years. Therfore it is relevant to analyse now the tax optimisation phenomenon so that its complexity could be analysed in the future by sustainable financ eprofesionnals. Therfore this contribution proposes first a literaure analysis to understand the phenomenon and provides guidelines for operationalisation. A data set is worked out for the Stoxx600 and some comparative tests are led with earlier initiatives on this issue.

Miying Yang (Cranfield University, UK)
Robert Reinhardt (Sustainable Business Consultancy & Research, Germany)
Konstantinos Tsagarakis (Technical University of Crete, Greece)
Carl Waring (Frazer-Nash Consultancy, UK)
Circular economy for transport systems: towards a radical vision
PRESENTER: Miying Yang

ABSTRACT. Currently, the transport system is primarily characterized by incremental changes, resulting in a slow rate of progress in circular economy (CE) and decarbonisation. Considering the urgency of addressing climate change and resource scarcity, we need radical changes which can significantly transform the transport systems towards a decarbonised CE. To date, there is a lack of understanding of the radical visions of CE transportation future as well as a lack of effective ways to communicate these visions to relevant stakeholders. This is due to several reasons. Radical visions entail a significant change from the current status quo and require a fundamental shift in mindset and practices. Such paradigm shifts are often met with resistance and skepticism as they challenge established ways of thinking and doing things. Moreover, many decision-makers tend to be risk-averse, preferring incremental changes over radical shifts. This mindset can hinder the acceptance and adoption of radical visions, as they may perceive them as uncertain or risky. Additionally, implementing a circular economy often relies on leveraging cutting-edge technologies, innovative business models, and sustainable practices, but stakeholders may lack awareness or understanding of these technological advancements. Furthermore, shifting towards a circular economy often necessitates significant behavioural changes from both businesses and consumers, who are often resistant to radical change. To address these challenges, the project aims to engage with stakeholders to co-create radical visions of CE for air-rail-road transport systems and co-develop a value-based approach for communicating these visions (see Figure 1). First, the project will conduct a literature and practical review to develop a framework of radical vision co-creation for CE, based on which, the team will organise a stakeholder workshop to co-create radical visions of CE for air-rail-road transport systems. Second, the project will develop a value-based method for communicating these radical visions to relevant stakeholders. Shifting towards radical visions of CE often necessitates significant behavioural changes from government, businesses and consumers, who are often resistant to radical change. This project proposes a new concept ‘radical points’, meaning the points which would determine or affect stakeholders’ adoption of radical changes, for instance, ownership, cost, convenience, flexibility, speed, and comfort. The project will analyse the ‘pain and gain’ of each stakeholder regarding the ‘radical points’ and focus on the long-term value of adopting the radical changes. We would like to invite stakeholders to participate in this project to co-create the radical visions of CE in transport and validate the value-based communication method.

16:30-18:30 Session 6C: Wastewater and circular economy
Husam Sameer (Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany)
Location: Room 3
Lledo Castellet Viciano (University of Valencia, Spain)
Vicent Hernández-Chover (University of Valencia, Spain)
Águeda Bellver-Domingo (University of Valencia, Spain)
Francesc Hernández-Sancho (Universitat de València, Spain)
A sustainable wastewater treatment management in the textile industry: economic feasibility within the circular economy framework

ABSTRACT. Textile production is a process that involves several environmental challenges, extending from the sourcing of raw materials to the manufacture and use of products, which requires the adoption of sustainable practices both in the production process and in the reduction and management of waste and emissions, energy use, as well as the promotion of more responsible and sustainable consumption, fostering the durability and reuse of textile products. Regarding water use, the manufacture of textile products requires high water consumption. However, there is some variability in the volume of water used depending on geographical location and specific production practices. According to the Turkish Statistical Institute, the textile industry is estimated to be the second most water-intensive sector (191.5 million tonnes) and the third most energy-intensive (Ozturk et al., 2016). On average, it takes approximately 2500-3000 l of water to manufacture one cotton T-shirt. However, this value can vary greatly depending on the region, the characteristics of the process used, and the type of fibre produced. For example, cotton production is known to be particularly water intensive. In addition to water consumption, wastewater generated in the textile industry can also have a significant environmental impact on the quality of receiving waters if effluents are not adequately treated (Reddy et al., 2014). Many production processes in the textile industry require the use of toxic chemicals, such as surfactants, dyes, pigments, resins, chelating agents, dispersing agents, inorganic salts, heavy metals, biocides, etc., so that the wastewater resulting from the process has high chemical oxygen demand (COD), colour and salts (Dasgupta et al., 2015), solvents, dyes and bleaches, which can leach into the water and cause serious damage to aquatic life and ecosystems. Another factor that can affect water consumption in the textile industry is the efficiency of water recovery and reuse. Some factories have adopted advanced technologies to recover and reuse water used in the production process, which can help reduce water consumption and protect water resources. Due to the importance of water for life and the environment, it is essential that the textile industry strives to improve its water efficiency and adopt sustainable practices that minimise the impact of wastewater generated in the production process, including the use of cleaner technologies and the proper management of chemical waste. It is along these lines that the TRUST project was born, with the aim to help address water scarcity in Mediterranean regions, particularly in MENA countries such as Tunisia, Algeria, and Turkey, where water resources are overused, and climate change exacerbates the risk. The World Bank predicts that these regions will suffer significant economic losses due to climate-related water shortages by 2050. Despite this, there are opportunities to enhance water security by reusing the significant amount of wastewater that currently goes untreated. The TRUST project aims to provide a sustainable wastewater treatment solution for challenging textile wastewaters using a circular economy approach. The goal is to demonstrate the feasibility and sustainability of innovative wastewater treatment technologies that not only reduce water usage but also recover useful by-products such as salt. One of the main stages of the feasibility analysis of the TRUST project is the identification and quantification of the costs associated with the infrastructure created for water reuse in the textile. The main objective of LCC is to provide a complete and accurate picture of the total costs associated with the process, to help companies and individuals make more informed procurement decisions. In addition to the cost analysis of the project, the benefits will be identified and quantified in economical terms, demonstrating the feasibility of the novel technologies.

Águeda Bellver-Domingo (University of Valencia, Spain)
Lledó Castellet-Viciano (University of Valencia, Spain)
Vicent Hernández-Chover (University of Valencia, Spain)
Francesc Hernández-Sancho (Estructura Económica, Universitat de València, Spain)
Anaerobic digestion under economic, environmental and social point of view: The influence of circular economy and biogas upgrading

ABSTRACT. Wastewater treatment not only involves the elimination of pollutants to preserve health conditions and environmental sustainability but also means the generation of sewage sludge that need to be managed. Sewage sludge can be considered as by-product of wastewater treatment that cannot be disposed in the conditions in which it is produced at the wastewater treatment plants (WWTP). High quantity of organic matter and nutrients force the managers to treat the sludge to reduce the pollutants and water content, increasing the costs of wastewater treatment. Under a circular economy point of view and considering the quantity of organic matter, sludge can be used to other purposes such as fertilizer improving both the soil’s quality and the productivity of crops. Furthermore, sludge can be used as bio-remediation product to recover damaged ecosystems, such as mining tailed areas. These uses enhance the circularity since organic matter and nutrients have been recycled, returning to ecosystems in a controlled way and farmers save money because artificial fertilizers will not necessary. Raw biogas can be directly used to produce heat and power but has low content of methane (60%) and is not suitable for direct injection into natural gas system. Upgrading biogas is the best option to reduce the efficiency and environmental problems. This biogas has more than 90% of methane and it is comparable to natural gas. This study is focused on the identification of these benefits to help decision makers to implement new technologies to produce biomethane. Identifying the negative and positive impacts of biogas and biomethane not only from a technological point of view, but also under economic and social points of view offer a multidisciplinary approach that reinforce both the circular economy approach and the energy-from-waste nexus.

Águeda Bellver-Domingo (University of Valencia, Spain)
Vicent Hernández-Chover (University of Valencia, Spain)
Lledó Castellet-Viciano (University of Valencia, Spain)
Francesc Hernández-Sancho (University of Valencia, Spain)
Constructed wetlands to ensure the effluent quality management t: An approach based on water ecosystems restoration

ABSTRACT. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS) was developed by United Nations to increase the public and governmental awareness about both preserving ecosystems and reinforcing a global partnership. Clean water and sanitation are one of this 17 SDGS, focused on ensuring water availability and achieving suitable water and wastewater management. According to the characteristics of the territory there are some strategies to meet this SDGS. Constructed wetlands (CW) are one of these strategies based on natural functioning of wetlands. CWs are a sustainable technology that allow to reduce the pollution level of both the raw wastewater and the treated effluent, combining physico-chemical and biological processes that allow the retention of pollutants and their elimination through photosynthesis. Specifically, CWs achieve environmental, economic, and social benefits through the improvement of the quality of ecosystem services, such as water quality and carbon sequestration. As a result, monitoring the ecosystem services become an effective tool for wastewater management in areas with small population, agricultural practices, and urban areas where the water quality improvement is sought but the installation of a tertiary treatment is not feasible. This study considers the CWs as the future technology for tertiary treatment in small urban areas that need to improve their effluent quality. Through this, the effluent is revalued and managed properly to meet the needs of population and environment according to the SDGS.

Lucyna Łękawska-Andrinopoulou (Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Greece)
Elena Koumaki (National Technical University of Athens, Greece)
Nephele Cauchi (Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Greece)
Fotios Konstantinidis (Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Greece)
Charalampos Manousiadis (Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Greece)
Georgios Tsimiklis (Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Greece)
Simos Malamis (National Technical University of Athens, Greece)
Angelos Amditis (Institute of Communication and Computer Systems, Greece)
Matchmaking Framework for Water and Sludge Based Industrial Symbiosis Interactions

ABSTRACT. To accommodate for specific, often complex requirements of circular economy synergies, a need for innovative approaches and designs of digital tools arises. Marketplaces are digital platforms facilitating identification of possible collaborations between users, that are conventionally operating based on supply and demand. The complexity of circular economy collaborations requires however new approaches. To address this gap, matchmaking frameworks for Circular Economy (CE) [1] and Industrial Symbiosis (IS) [2] were proposed. Matchmaking frameworks are based on multi-level approach to facilitate collaboration reaching beyond traditional interactions grounded on offer and demand solely. The frameworks were developed with the aim of being deployed within marketplaces to offer more tailored matchmaking to CE stakeholders. In case of the IS framework, a need for more elaborate matching for water sector, and especially for water-waste-energy nexus has been identified as part of Accelwater project [3] activities. Therefore, in this paper, the concept has been further expanded to give special focus to management of reclaimed water and sludge in the context of IS exchanges. The presented framework constitutes the conceptual work performed as a fundamental step for the development of a dedicated marketplace component within water domain in the scope of the Accelwater project [3] and its IS platform [4]. The multi-level approach of the proposed concept consists of following aspects: (1) IS readiness level with focus on water-waste-energy nexus, (2) fit for purpose-based management of reclaimed water and sludge, (3) environmental aspects related to the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy consumption, and (4) the social perspective. The aspects are reflected by 4 assessment levels as presented in Figure 1 and assessed in relation to the matches between users, giving as an output a ranking of relevant matches. For the design of 1st level of the framework, the questionnaire presented in [2] was revised to highlight the water-waste-energy nexus aspects of IS. The 2nd level of the framework embraces the “fit-for-purpose” reuse of water (B1) and sludge management (B2). For B1, only non-potable uses are considered with scoring based on the proximity of the class of supplied and demanded water. Water quality class is defined based on the intended use and on national and/or EU and international regulations [5, 6,7]. Sludge matchmaking is based on types of sludge, treatment and potential uses and related orders of priority as described in [8]. The 3rd level of the framework is embracing the environmental assessment of the potential marketplace driven cooperation. It takes into account following criteria: a) energy consumption of each treatment scheme, b) GHG emissions from energy consumption of the wastewater treatment processes, from chemicals consumption during filtration and disinfection steps, from transport between marketplace users for the deal to be completed. 4th level embraces the social perspective by looking at components like: public engagement and stakeholder participation, ethical issues, skills development, etc. which will be targeted through a categorized questionnaire. The Matchmaking Framework will be validated and deployed within the marketplace that is being developed as a apart of the Accelwater project.


  1. Łȩkawska-Andrinopoulou L., Tsimiklis G., Leick S., Moreno Nicolás M., Amditis, A. Circular Economy Matchmaking Framework for Future Marketplace Deployment. Sustainability 2021, 13, 5668. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13105668
  2. Akrivou C., Łȩkawska-Andrinopoulou L., Manousiadis C., Tsimiklis G., Oikonomopoulou V., Papadaki S., Krokida M., Amditis A., Industrial symbiosis marketplace concept for waste valorization pathways, E3S Web Conf., 349 (2022) 11005, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1051/e3sconf/202234911005
  3. AccelWater project H2020, https://www.accelwater.eu/ (last visited 03-04-2023)
  4. Amditis A., Tsimiklis G., Manousiadis C., Akrivou C., Konstantinidis F., Krikochoriti M., Deliverable D7.2 “System of systems architecture”, 2022, Accelwater, https://www.accelwater.eu/files/deliverables/D7.2_submitted.pdf (last visited 03-04-2023)
  5. The EU Regulation for minimum requirements for water reuse (DIR 2020/741/EC)
  6. State of Victoria (Environment Protection Authority Victoria) 2021, Victorian guideline for water recycling, https://www.epa.vic.gov.au/-/media/epa/files/publications/1910-2.pdf (last visited 03-04-2023)
  7. U. S. Environmental Protection Agency and U. S. Agency for International Development, 2012, 2012 Guidelines for Water Reuse, EPA/600/R-12/618, https://www3.epa.gov/region1/npdes/merrimackstation/pdfs/ar/AR-1530.pdf (last visited 03-04-2023)
  8. Đurđević, D.; Žiković, S.; Blecich, P. Sustainable Sewage Sludge Management Technologies Selection Based on Techno-Economic-Environmental Criteria: Case Study of Croatia. Energies 2022, 15, 3941. https://doi.org/10.3390/en15113941

This research was financially supported by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under grant agreement No 958266 (project AccelWater)

Husam Sameer (Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany)
Hans H. Dürr (Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany)
Martina Flörke (Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Germany)
Water footprint analysis of recycled concrete
PRESENTER: Husam Sameer

ABSTRACT. Buildings play an important role in achieving sustainable development goals, especially regarding the use of water resources and greenhouse gas emissions. The circular economy is an increasingly important area in constructing and demolishing buildings. Here we examine the potential for circular economy in the production of concrete and extend the assessment of recycled aggregates with analysis of water footprint. A building case study from Germany is considered, which has been selectively demolished and rebuilt with use of recycled materials from the old building. Recycled concrete is assessed from end of life (EoL) to production within the life cycle assessment (LCA) boundaries, and is compared with conventional concrete. Several technologies of concrete recycling are considered, including stationary and mobile plants. The primary results show that significant savings of water footprint can be seen when using the mobile plant for aggregates recycling in comparison with the stationary plant.

Eva Ferrer (NOVA IMS, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal)
Sandro Mendonça (ISCTE, Portugal)
Jose Silva (Universidade de Lisboa, Portugal)
Bruno Damásio (NOVA IMS, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal)
The sustainable dynamics of battery technology: a knowledge-based assessment from article publications
PRESENTER: Bruno Damásio

ABSTRACT. This study provides a bibliometric and text mining analysis of article publications on secondary batteries and circular economy between 2000 and 2021. The objective is to expand the literature on the impact of reusable batteries in sustainability and investigate the role such technology plays in eco-efficiency. Understanding the research evolution is critical to highlight the current scientific framework on the subject as batteries are vital components for a transition to a more sustainable and ecological energy supply. The analysis concentrates on five different battery types specifically redox flow, lead-acid, solid-state, lithium-sulfur and sodium-ion, which are technologies with potential to segment the leading position of lithium-ion batteries in the area of energy supply and storage. A total of 1154 publications mentioning the five selected battery types and other eco-related terminology (circular economy, sustainability, sustainable, green innovation, eco-innovation, and eco-efficiency) were searched and extracted from the Web of Science (WoS) database. This platform is commonly used by the scientific community in the field of bibliometrics because of its extensive collection of high-quality research materials, making it an exceptionally robust and reliable data source (Sarkar et al., 2022). Firstly, the WoS database was filtered using built-in search queries so that only articles that mentioned the pre-defined battery technologies were object of investigation. Afterwards, the initial dataset was pre-processed and filtered in the R environment, to create a sub-dataset containing publications whose abstract mentions at least one of the pre-selected eco tokens. Furthermore, to conduct a more specific exercise on circular economy, the data was filtered to create an additional data frame containing only articles that mentioned either circular economy or circularity. Generally, we conclude that the global article publication activity started to grow since 2015. The scientific efforts from countries such as China, the United States of America, South Korea, and Germany, were the main drivers for the increased publication volume over the years. Nonetheless, the academic institutions that stand out for their contribution are originally from the forementioned countries, with the exception of Germany, as well as from Spain and Australia. From an authors’ perspective, the individuals who contributed the most for the observed publication trend are originally from the United States of America, China, and Spain. As for journals, the three main publishers are the Journal of Materials Chemistry A, ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, and the Journals of Power Sources.

Furthermore, content analysis on article abstracts shows a growth in popularity of battery-related terminology and of concepts indicative of sustainability and renewable energy. Sodium-ion battery and lithium-ion battery are the most reoccurring trigrams. Such is expected since on one hand lithium-ion batteries are a leading technology in energy storage for their high specific energy, high energy density, long shelf life and relatively affordable cost (Kennedy et al., 2000; Zhang et al., 2022), and on the other hand there is a great similarity between sodium-ion and lithium-ion batteries (Eftekhari et al., 2018). Other commonly found trigrams are sustainable energy storage, renewable energy source, and battery electric vehicle, which are all linked to the sustainability field. Token analysis indicates that terms such as sustainable, energy, and system were amongst the most popular words found in abstracts between 2000 and 2010. From 2011 onwards, other terms also started to grow in importance, for instance, material, storage, lithium, and ion. The specific exercise on circular economy reveals that redox flow has the greatest volume of articles published on circularity issues, followed by sodium-ion, a direct competitor of lithium-ion batteries. Considering the number of publications per year, redox flow is the only technology with a clear growth trend on papers mentioning circular economy. The lead-acid battery demonstrated a constant publication rate for the last 3 years. In 2021 there was an increase in the publication volume of articles related to sodium-ion batteries, but the opposite trend was registered for solid-state technologies. Finally, lithium-sulfur has a single article on the topic of circular economy, which was released in 2021.