CITYCIRLE was successfully concluded
Peripheral cities in 5 Central European cities and region, namely Košice (Slovakia), Varaždin (Croatia), Udine (Italy), Kranj (Slovenia) and Dornbirn (Austria). The project introduced full package of actions, consisting of setting-up the circular economy hubs in non-metropolitan the cities/regions in order to establish linkages among key circular economy stakeholders (companies, public administration, universities and citizens); enabling and facilitation of the innovation processes in circular economy cities by educating quadruple-helix stakeholders and providing tools for the management of efficient circular economy innovation processes and to deploy these solutions, and setting-up of transnational Circular Economy value chains by establishing transnational CE network and a connecting platform of digital marketplaces for critical materials, supported by joint transnational strategy and action plans.
By setting-up the circular economy hubs in the cities/regions, the new linkages among key circular economy stakeholders (companies, public administration, universities, and citizens) were established and the facilitation of the innovation processes in circular economy cities were supported. These hubs provide a space for designing new solutions in the CE field – material, waste, water, energy, soil, food circles supported by business and operational models. These networks in all 5 target regions/cities jointly developed and adopted the circular economy strategies in line with RIS3 respective strategies. This resulted in adoption of new strategies by 34 institutions and applying of new tools or services by 106 institutions. As the result of the hubs operation, the several follow-up projects and initiatives were prepared and funded with value of 5 836 175.86€, even creating 18 new jobs in the territories.
Moreover, by educating stakeholders via series of trainings with 118 people trained and providing tools for proper management of efficient circular economy innovation processes and for deploy of these solutions, since the concept of circular economy is new to many stakeholders in partner cities, building a knowledge base in newly established hubs is necessary to enable them to work in the field, the adoption readiness level was supported in the region/cities.
To support the awareness raising and knowledge building by showcasing the economic and environmental potential of circular solutions, also the pilot projects were implemented with and for local/regional stakeholders. In Košice (SK), the pilot aimed to showcase the possible cycles of food waste generated at 3 exemplary secondary schools and conduct the analyses assessing the impact of scaling up. In Varaždin (HR), the pilots represent a valuable blueprint for policymakers to stimulate the progression from a linear towards circular economy, using the example of the bio-waste from city market, processed at biogas plant and utilized at the nut farm, concluding the circle. In Udine (IT), the pilot actions assessed the potential of industrial symbiosis and circular economy exploiting the thermal waste (heat otherwise dissipated) and fuels deriving from the construction of a waste treatment plant. In Kranj (SI), the pilot focused on exploring, testing and refining approach on management of land on the principles of circular economy, that will enable urban regeneration in collaboration with landowners and users. In Dornbirn (AT), pilot actions aim to spread the awareness and knowledge of potentials of circular economy principles in the domain of advanced manufacturing and intelligent production.
Finally, by setting-up of transnational Circular Economy value chains implemented by launch of transnational network and a connecting platform of digital marketplaces for critical materials, supported by joint transnational strategy and action plans. These actions also contributed to preparations of follow-up projects reacting to joint challenges among different regions of Central Europe area.