As part of our HOOP project, eight lighthouse cities and regions are blazing the trail in Europe by creating Biowaste Clubs that seek to create high value-added products from urban biowaste.

Tackling the challenges created by urban biowaste is a monumental task – and not one that can be solved by municipalities alone. Facilitated and supported by the CSCP and other partners from the HOOP project, the eight cities and regions have established Biowaste Clubs to bring together different local actors and discuss new ways to transform urban food waste and sewage into high value-added products.

The focus of the Biowaste Club meetings varied from lighthouse to lighthouse. In Kuopio, one of the issues raised was the space limitation in private households for a separate biowaste bin. In Greater Porto, three municipalities presented their experience with household separate collection. In Bergen, the focus was on some innovative valorisation streams such as insect rearing or algae production as feed for aquaculture. Building on their experience within the predecessor project SCALIBUR, the city of Albano Laziale and the region of Western Macedonia installed sensors to optimise biowaste collection and are looking into fermentation of coffee grounds respectively. Münster discussed the challenges and opportunities to improve the collection quality and quantities and also ways to engage citizens better within the city. Almere’s initial Biowaste Club meeting focused on using biowaste as building material in the construction sector, while Murcia looked at the topic of circular bioeconomy opportunities.

Although the thematic focus differed between lighthouses, the importance of a multi-stakeholder approaches to broaden the understanding of the issues at hand was confirmed throughout all Clubs. One of the aims of the Biowaste Clubs is to build active and productive networks as well as strengthen cooperation within existing ones in order to identify new business opportunities that support the urban circular economy.

HOOP is a Horizon 2020 project.

For further questions, please contact Fiona Woo.

 

With its pristine beaches, Buddhist pagodas, and vibrant cities, Vietnam has turned into a leading tourist destination, with the tourism sector becoming one of the country’s economic pillars. In 2019 the number of international arrivals skyrocketed to 18 million compared to only around 2 million in 2000*. Data from 2019 also suggests that tourism accounted for over 9 % of Vietnam’s total gross domestic product (GDP)*. But, how can the tourism sector become more sustainable and play a strategic role in recovering and prospering in the era of an ongoing pandemic?

In November 2021, the CSCP launched a pilot project that seeks to explore new strategies to promote the circular economy in Vietnam’s tourism sector. The pilot project is funded by the TUI Care Foundation and is being implemented for a duration of six months together with the Vietnam Tourism Association (VITA). The project will lay the groundwork for a sustainable circular tourism in Vietnam and beyond. To achieve this, the project will engage with national and industrial stakeholders in Vietnam and promote collaboration among them. By working with selected tourism start-ups and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in a Circularity Lab, the project team will facilitate the co-creation of new ideas for sustainable circular tourism products and services.

As part of the Circularity Lab activities, a prototyping of ideas by the participating start-ups and SMEs will encourage their actual implementation. During the pilot, the project team will work closely with the Lang Co district of Hue City in Central Vietnam. New insights gathered during the pilot on how to promote sustainable circular tourism will be shared with all stakeholders involved, creating momentum for a more resilient and vibrant tourism sector in Vietnam.

Despite its contribution to the local economy, the tourism sector is also known as a major contributor to environmental impacts. In addition to land use, tourism requires resources such as energy, water and food, which generates a huge amount of waste, road congestion, noise and air pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. This pilot aims at providing new and powerful impulses to tackle these challenges in creative and collaborative ways for a sustainable tourism that benefits the environment, the people, and the economy. The pilot will identify new sustainable circular business models as well as come up with strategies to tackle, among others, the issues of plastic and food waste as starting points.

For further questions, please contact Kartika Anggraeni.

*The World Bank
*Statista 2021.

Photo by Chris Slupski on Unsplash.

 

What does it take to implement behaviour change interventions in different contexts? For example, how does an intervention to promote shorter showers differ from one focused on boosting e-bike use? What can be learnt from one or the other? In this Academy of Change special podcast, listen to our discussion with the Catalyst project leads, one year after the start of their pilot projects.

As a follow up to our Academy of Change (AoC), we started the Catalyst programme to work with a group of AoC participants and support them to integrate behaviour change methods into their work. Three participating organisations had the chance to have their pilot projects funded and implement behavioural knowledge in practice. Hespul in France implemented a project on shorter showers, CEED in Bulgaria worked on a project to promote more e-bikes as a mode of daily commute, while RARE in the US focused on supporting sustainable fishing.

One year later, Maïté Garnier (Hespul), Nadya Tasheva (CEED) and Claudia Quintanilla (RARE) sat together with Rosa Strube, head of the Sustainable Lifestyles team at the CSCP and Rob Moore from Behaviour Change to discuss the highlights of their work.

In a vivid discussion, they share how the chosen behaviour change methods worked in their context, how they used behavioural models to identify barriers and the role that co-creation played in the scoping of the best intervention points for their projects. A broad range of topics from how to engage relevant stakeholders and adapt to changing circumstances of a pandemic through to techniques for analysing impact are discussed in the podcast.

Download our Catalyst pilots podcast now!

To learn more about behaviour change interventions and how to use them to increase impact, please visit our Academy of Change website.

For further question, please contact Rosalyn Old .

72 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions are the result of our daily life choices*. From how we live, choose to travel or what we put on the table – every action we take has an impact on the environment. But this also means that there is a huge potential to drive positive change by motivating, engaging and supporting citizens to strive for a more sustainable lifestyle.

Evidence suggests that attempts to change citizens’ habits by simply informing them on the environmental threats that we face have not led to significant behaviour change. Realising what should be changed often does not lead to the actions needed to actually generate such change. Our recently launched project PSLifestyle – Co-creating a Positive and Sustainable Lifestyle Tool with and for European Citizens” addresses the challenge of closing the gap between climate awareness and individual action by increasing citizen participation in sustainability issues. A web-based application (APP) will be developed and used to collect, monitor and analyse citizens’ consumption data and to jointly research, develop and implement everyday solutions to mitigate climate change.

The PSLifestyle project will build a data-driven movement with and for the citizens to enable more sustainable lifestyles across Europe. The project’s goal is to engage a total of four million European citizens (with a particular focus on eight European countries) in data collection and sharing through the PSLifestyle APP.

The APP will be based on the consumption-driven carbon footprint calculator ‘Lifestyle Test’, set up by the project partner Sitra  in 2017. In PSLifestyle, a substantially improved version of the APP will be further developed and contextualised to align with the citizens’ local realities. This will be done by creating a localised version of the application through living labs in order to understand local capabilities, opportunities, and motivations. The project will also work with other societal catalysts, such as policymakers, businesses, civil society organisations (CSOs), and the academia to design solutions based on citizens’ collected data.

As a project partner, the CSCP will coordinate citizen engagement activities through living labs in the eight pilot countries as well as act as a local living lab implementer in Germany. It will also cover the large-scale deployment of the PSLifestyle APP across Germany, ensuring that as many citizens use the application and provide relevant data. Moreover, the CSCP will coordinate and design engagement activities with CSOs as well as support engagement activities with industry actors.

The PSLifestyle project is funded under the European Union’s research program Horizon 2020 and it will be running over a period of 3,5 years (2021-2025). The project relies on the expertise of a consortium of 16 European partners.

For further questions, please contact Arlind Xhelili.

**Hertwich and Peters, 2009

Image @Open Street Maps contributors

When it comes to bio-waste valorisation, from sorting and collection up to its conversion into value-added products, close collaboration between relevant actors is the key to success. Our SCALIBUR project highlights the importance of multi-stakeholder processes by sharing experiences and learnings from three European cities in a recently-published series of manuals.

Over 100 million tonnes of biowaste are produced in Europe each year. Roughly 75% of this biowaste ends up in landfills or is incinerated, posing serious environmental challenges. Innovative solutions are needed urgently. This is why our SCALIBUR project brings together leading waste management companies, technology developers and research organisations in four European cities to demonstrate new ways of transforming urban food waste and sewage sludge into high value-added products. Such multi-stakeholder processes are helpful for cities to increase their recycling rate and create new circular economy business opportunities.

The SCALIBUR National Action Manuals analyse the key experiences and learnings from the project´s pilot cities in engaging their stakeholders: Kozani (Greece), Albano Laziale (Italy), and Madrid (Spain). In addition, the manuals share hands-on expertise from a best performing terroritory as represented by the city of Lund (Sweden). The manuals offer a step-by-step guide on how to set up and run a long-term multi-stakeholder engagements in order to enhance the acceptance and adoption of newly developed technologies and processes.

Please go to our library to download the manuals.

For further questions, please contact Francesca Grossi.

In times like these – with an ongoing pandemic, the pressing challenge of climate change, and new standards stemming from the EU Green Deal – small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have to top-up their efforts in order to stay competitive. Our joint CSR.digital and Competence Centre eStandards online conference “Sustainable Digitalisation 2.0” put the focus on what it takes for SMEs to not only react to changing circumstances but also proactively lead positive change.

How can the two mega trends – sustainability and digitalisation – be interlinked smartly and responsibly? What opportunities do companies have in using digital tools and processes to reach their sustainability goals? What hinders and challenges companies from endorsing digitalisation as a sustainability enabler? While clear-cut answers to such questions are challenging, the conference offered a platform for constructive discussion and stimulating peer exchange.

Insights from the North-Rhine Westphalian (NRW) perspective were shared by Prof. Andreas Pinkwart (NRW Minister of Economy), who also spoke about the need to jointly reflect on digitalisation and decarbonisation in interlinked ways. Almut Nagel from the European Commission elaborated more on the EU Green Deal requirements and the implication they have for SMEs.

Front running SMEs in the field of digital and sustainable development presented their approaches and showcased their positive results in using digitalisation as an enabler for sustainability. Inspiring ideas were taken up in a total of six breakout sessions during which in-depth discussions took place around topics such as trust in the digital economy, climate protection through digital technologies, circular value creation and new work concepts.

A summary paper of the insights and discussions that took place at the conference will be published soon – please check the CSCP news section!

The digital conference “Sustainable digitalisation 2.0: Covid-19 and the European Green Deal as Accelerators and Paradigm Shifts” was co-organised by our projects the Competence Centre eStandards and CSR.digital.

For more information on CSR.digital, please contact Patrick Bottermann.

For further questions regarding the Competence Centre eStandards, please contact Patrik Eisenhauer.

Financial institutions in Pakistan often face challenges when it comes to properly assessing and addressing the risks of green technology investments. The lack of knowledge, skills and training on the appropriate instruments to mitigate the risks of transactions often hinder them from financing such projects altogether. A recent CSCP training as part the Sugar REET project was aimed at supporting local financial institutions (FIs) to increase their capacities and tap into green investment opportunities.

The CSCP team shared knowledge and practical examples on how to decide which projects to finance based on the lowest environmental, managerial, financial and security related risks. A broad range of topics, such as project development cycles, credit risk assessment, types of credit guarantee schemes, or risk rating tools were covered during the training. External co-financing opportunities were also presented and explained as important incentives for the financial institutions.

A total of 45 representatives of Pakistani financial institutions joined the training, which was conducted in close collaboration with the Iqbal Hamit Trust and the State Bank of Pakistan.

The project Implementation of Resource and Energy Efficient Technologies in the Sugar Sector of Pakistan (Sugar REET) seeks to enhance the resource efficiency of the sugar sector through the adoption of Resource and Energy Efficiency (REE) technologies.

Sugar REET is part of the SWITCH-Asia Programme.

For further questions, please contact Ahmad ur-Hafiz.

Image from Adrienne Andersen, Pexels.

 

Consumer electronics waste is one of the fastest growing waste streams. Only 40% of this waste is recycled, let alone repaired or reused. What can policy makers, manufacturers, retailers and last but not least consumers do to stop this downward trend? In October, the CSCP co-hosted an EU CircularTalk on the topic of “Circular consumer electronics: getting it right from design to consumption”, organised by the European retailers’ association EuroCommerce.

The main challenge is the short life span of products, which is why retailers, the recycling industry, researchers and civil society organisations discussed in two panel rounds interventions that can stop this trend and return more electronics to the cycle. The CSCP has conducted various pilot projects to test promising interventions that get consumers to return, repair and reuse old appliances. Insights from these pilots were shared with the #EUCircularTalks audience.

Tiina Vyyryläinen from the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) and Paulo Da Silva Lemos from DG Environment (European Commission) underlined the urgent need to finally act and put an end to the waste of resources in the electronics sector. According to Vyyryläinen, education, lifelong training and self learning must be put in place, while more best practices are needed to show alternatives to the common linear lifecycle of consumer electronics.

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This Circular Talk was the second organised by the Leadership Group on Retailers, Consumers and Skills in 2021. The group is led by the CSCP and is an initiative of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform. The CSCP will soon launch its Circular Academy, a six-module training programme aimed at supporting retailers to get consumers on board for more circularity in the electronics sector.

The CSCP has also participated in the EU Circular Talks “Circular textile design: Get it right from the start” and “Measuring Circular Economy Impacts in Cities and Regions”.

For further questions, please contact Imke Schmidt.

Some of the main challenges of our era, such as climate change, housing and mobility issues, ageing population, inequality and societal polarisation are especially palpable in cities. At the same time, cities have a huge innovation potential to tackle these challenges. In October 2021, the city of Aachen signed the Circular Cities Declaration, a major step in the city’s efforts to speed up its transition to the Circular Economy, alleviate existing challenges, and pave the path to a more sustainable future.

As demographic and economic epicentres, cities have a critical role to play in making the transition to the Circular Economy happen. The Circular Cities Declaration (CCD) allows local and regional governments to communicate their commitment and gives them a chance to create a shared vision as well as a network of committed organisations to share experiences, challenges, and successes.

The signing ceremony in Aachen’s town hall gathered more than a hundred stakeholders from different organisations, such as universities, business, city administration, civil society – a diverse network as a base for fruitful collaborations in the circularity journey.

As a supporting partner to the CCD network, the CSCP is sharing its circular economy expertise, including holding webinars to signatories. The webinars offer a combination of state-of-the-art theoretical knowledge as well as hands-on advice. In October 2021, the CSCP held a webinar on the topic of citizen engagement and behaviour change for circular cities. Drawing on insights and experience from projects such as Day of the Good Life or the Consumer Insight Action Panel, the webinar highlighted how circularity is highly dependent on citizens, for example in their role as waste and, therefore, resource producers. Other interesting topics revolved around practical examples of engagement and lively discussions with the cities.

Upcoming signatories of the Circular Cities Declaration have the opportunity to achieve better international profiling, access advice and support, and enhance city-to-city cooperation.

The CSCP calls on cities to sign the Declaration and become pioneers in the path to a Circular Economy.

Do you have further questions? Please reach out to Cristina Fedato and let’s engage together!

Photo by © CCE/IME.

 

How can sustainability be communicated successfully, generate real action, and lead to positive impact? This is the focus of our training and networking programme, weiter_wirken. The recently published booklet “From Thinking to Acting – Knowledge and Tools for Sustainability Projects” summarises the central contents of the training, thus providing civil society organisations (CSOs) with suggestions for project design. It also lays out steps to effective behaviour change and shares useful tools and examples.

weiter_wirken takes the model of our successful Academy of Change (AoC) programme and brings it into the context of the region North Rhine-Westphalia to not only challenge conventional belief systems and practices, but also generate creative ways to introduce and promote more sustainable ones.

In the first round of the training and networking programme (2020/2021), CSOs working for more social and environmental sustainability were trained in numerous workshops on how to design and communicate their projects more effectively and thus increase their positive impact. Participants not only learned about insights from behavioural science, but also had the opportunity to apply them in their projects. At the end of the training, participants set a 10-step plan with helpful tasks and tools to make their projects more effective and have the opportunity to stay in touch through a community of practice.

The ten steps are summarised in a booklet (in German), which also includes examples, tools, and other relevant materials. You can download the booklet here or order a copy for free via the website of Stiftung Umwelt und Entwicklung Nordrhein-Westfalen.

Are you keen on learning more about how behaviour science can support you to achieve more impact in your sustainability projects? Would you like to be part of a network of like-minded people? Then, subscribe to our weiter_wirken newsletter or check the weiter_wirken website to be the first to know about the start of the application phase in early 2022 for the second round of the weiter_wirken programme!

weiter_wirken is a cooperation project between the Collaborating Centre on Sustainable Consumption and Production (CSCP), ecosign / Akademie für Gestaltung and the Stiftung Umwelt und Entwicklung Nordrhein-Westfalen.

For further questions, please contact Jennifer Wiegard.