|Project title||Promoting collaboration for sustainable and circular use of bioresources across agriculture, forestry, and aquaculture|
|Duration||01/10/2021 – 30/04/2024|
|Promoter||Baltic Studies Centre|
|Partners||Institute of Agricultural Resources and Economics, RURALIS, Estonian University of Life Sciences, Vilnius University|
|Implementing agency||State Education Development Agency|
|Funding source||Baltic Research Programme, EEA Grants, Project No. EEZ/BPP/VIAA/2021/9|
|Total funding granted||984 224 EUR|
About CIRCLE in other languages
The project aims to develop an interdisciplinary perspective on the circular economy in the Baltic-Nordic region by integrating insights from sociology, economics, philosophy, political science, and environmental science.
The emphasis is placed on the use of by-products (bioresources) generated as part of primary production in agriculture, forestry, and aquaculture and across the sectoral boundaries to explore the underlying models of socially- and commercially-driven collaborations, and the factors facilitating and hindering the development and wider use of circular practices and collaborative arrangements thereof.
- Interdisciplinary evidence-based knowledge on innovative circular business models, collaborative arrangements, and policies across and between agriculture, forestry, and aquaculture that can lead to a sustainable use of bioresources.
- Overview of bioresources utilised, and the factors that enable and hamper intra- and cross-sectoral circularity.
- Sustainability assessment criteria for circular business models to assess their socio-economic and environmental benefits.
- Pathways for sustainable and ethical circular business models and sectoral linkages, and identified supportive governance and collaborative arrangements to facilitate transitions to circular bioeconomy.
- Wider societal impacts, including contribution to policies and industry, through a range of practice- and policy-oriented outputs promoting intra- and cross-sectoral circular solutions in bioresource use.
- Strengthened research capacity of participating organisations and advanced research on the circular economy in the Baltic-Nordic region.
WP1 Conceptual and analytical framework
Objectives of the WP1 are to
- develop an interdisciplinary conceptual and analytical framework (based on various disciplinary fields: sociology, economics, environmental science, philosophy, political science) for the analysis of intra- and cross-sectoral circular use of bioresources in agriculture, forestry, and aquaculture in the Baltic-Nordic region,
- address existing knowledge gaps and identify interdisciplinary approaches for exploring circular business models, collaborative arrangements, and policy frameworks, and
- establish criteria for assessing the impact of circular use of bioresources in terms of economic, social, and environmental sustainability.
Deliverables of WP1:
- 15 Theory primers,
- Report on media analysis,
- Interdisciplinary conceptual and analytical framework.
WP2 Scoping and mapping the diversity and performance of cross-sectoral circularity
Objectives of the WP2 are to
- map the variety of practices and initiatives involving elements of intra- and cross-sectoral circularity of bioresources in the Baltic-Nordic region,
- develop a taxonomy of cross-sectoral circular resource use and economic and social arrangements, and
- propose a measurement tool for assessing the business readiness to uptake the principles of circular economy.
Deliverables of WP2:
- Taxonomy of intra- and cross-sectoral circularity initiatives,
- Report on intra- and cross-sectoral linkages, incl. a tool for measuring circularity at enterprise level,
- Report on end-of-waste readiness.
WP3 In-depth exploration intra- and cross-sectoral circularity in agriculture, forestry, and aquaculture
Objectives of the WP3 are to
- explore in-depth 12 cases (three in each partner country) of intra- and cross-sectoral circularity initiatives in agriculture, forestry, and aquaculture, stemming from WP2 results,
- analyse circular business models and examine conditions and collaborative and governance arrangements that enable the use of bioresources in a sustainable and efficient manner,
- perform cost-benefit analysis of circular business models and assess their economic, social, and environmental sustainability impacts, and
- map consumer perspectives and attitudes towards circular business models and collaborative arrangements.
Deliverables of WP3:
- 12 case study reports,
- Case study synthesis report.
WP4 Ethical considerations and consumer demand for, and contribution to, cross-sectoral circularity
Objectives of the WP4 are to
- examine the ethical implications of the implementation of the principles of circularity across and within sectors by grounding it in the existing scholarship in environmental philosophy, particularly in relation to ecological solidarity, and
- use empirical evidence to explore how consumers engage with the cross-sectoral circular economy in their behaviours and how they understand the concept as it is presented in the media and policy debates.
The goal is to identify potential overlaps between policies and innovations (in business, technologies) related to the cross-sectoral circularity and locally existing, historically embedded practices, the latter part bringing a consumer perspective to the multi-level analysis of the circular economy.
Deliverables of WP4:
- Report on the current consumer behaviours and understandings of the circular economy, comparing results from all four countries,
- Policy-oriented summaries of findings based on 24 exploratory interviews and four focus groups.
WP5 Governance of cross-sectoral circularity
The objective of the WP5 is to
- explore institutional strategies and policies, including the role of collaborative governance for developing synergies between sectors to create a place-based circular economy.
Sub-objectives are to
- synthesise the results of WP1-WP4 regarding governance arrangements and policies for circularity in agriculture, forestry and aquaculture,
- identify and analyse enabling frameworks conducive to intra- and cross-sectoral circularity,
- develop tailored future scenarios for facilitating financial and collaborative arrangements, and
- elaborate policy and practice recommendations for supporting business models and collaborative governance of intra- and cross-sectoral circular resource use.
Deliverables of WP5:
- Four reports on national scenario workshops,
- Policy and practice recommendations. Five policy briefs.
WP6 Dissemination, exploitation, communication, and outreach
The objective of the WP6 is to
- enable and foster communication, stakeholder involvement and joint learning throughout the project.
This will be achieved through
- efficient communication and engagement with relevant stakeholders for collaboration and effective implementation of project tasks in WP1-WP6,
- preparation of research results in user-centred formats and their wide dissemination to relevant actors and stakeholders engaged in the circular economy,
- training of early-stage researchers.
Deliverables of WP6:
- DECO strategy,
- Project website,
- Four training webinars,
- Final conference,
- Peer-reviewed publication on interdisciplinary conceptualisation of intra-sectoral and cross-sectoral circularity,
- Peer-reviewed publication on matching the by-product technologies and regulative frameworks,
- Peer-reviewed publication on collaborative arrangements in circular economy,
- Peer-reviewed publication on ethical considerations of circular economy from an environmental ethics perspective,
- Peer-reviewed publication on collaborative governance arrangements of circularity in agriculture, forestry and aquaculture,
- ERC Consolidator grant proposal on cross-sectoral circularity.