Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, CARPE Conference 2019: Horizon Europe and beyond

Font Size: 
Circularity in value chains for building materials
Evert-Jan Velzing, Annemiek van der Meijden, Kitty Vreeswijk, Ruben Vrijhoef

Last modified: 24-10-2019



The urgency for developing a circular economy is growing, and more and more companies and organisations are concerned with the importance of adapting their business to fit a changing economy. However, many analyses on the circular economy are still rather abstract and there is a lack of understanding about what circularity would mean for specific industries. This insufficient insight especially seems to be apparent in the building and construction sector. Besides, the building and construction sector is responsible for a major part of energy use and emissions.

To tackle the issue of insufficient insight into the business consequences of circular devlopments, further research is necessary. Therefore, we propose to collaborate on a research project that aims to provide a more detailed level of analysis. The goal is to identify drivers and barriers to make better use of materials in the building and construction sector. This further research would benefit from an international collaboration between universities of applied sciences and industry from different European countries. An additional benefit of the applied orientation would be the relevance for professional education programmes.



CBS, PBL & Wageningen UR. (2017). Vrijkomen en verwerking van afval per doelgroep, 1990-2014 (indicator 0206, versie 13, 26 janauri2017). Retrieved from: https://www.clo.nl/indicatoren/nl0206-vrijkomen-en-verwerking-van-afval-per-doelgroep

Cuchí, A.; Arcas, J.; Casals, M. & Fobella, G. (2014). Building a common home Building sector – A global vision report. Produced by the Global Vision Area within the World SB14 Barcelona Conference.

De Jesus, A. & Mendonça, S. (2018). Lost in Transition? Drivers and Barriers in the Eco-innovation Road to the Circular Economy. Ecological Economics, 145, 75-89. doi: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2017.08.001.

EC. (2015). Closing the Loop – An EU action plan for the Circular Economy. Brussels: European Commission.

EC. (2019). Report from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on the implementation of the Circualr Economy Action Plan. Brussels: European Commission.

Ghisellini, P; Cialini, C. & Ulgiati, S. (2016). A review on circular economy: the expected transition to a balanced interplay of environmental and economic systems. Journal of Cleaner Production, 114, 11-32. doi: 10.1016/j.jclepro.2015.09.007.

Kirchherr, J., Pisciceli, L., Bour, R., Kostense-Smit, E., Muller, J., Huibrechtse-Truijens, A. & Hekkert, M. (2018). Barriers to the Circular Economy: Evidence From the European Union (EU). Ecological Economics, 150, 264-272.

Mazzucato, M. (2018). Mission-Oriented Research & Innovation in the European Union – A problem-solving approach to fuel innovation-led growth. Retrieved from: European Commission; https://ec.europa.eu/info/sites/info/files/mazzucato_report_2018.pdf

Nederland circulair in 2050. Rijksbreed programma Circulaire Economie (2016). Den Haag: Ministerie van Infrastructuur en Milieu & Ministerie van Economische Zaken.

Stahel, W.R. (2016) The Circular Economy. Nature, 531(7595), 435-438.

UN. (2018). 2018 Global Status Report – Towards a zero-emission, efficient and resilient buildings and construction sector. United Nations Environment Programme.

UNCTAD. (2018). Circular Economy: The New Normal (Policy Brief No. 61). Retrieved from United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD): https://unctad.org/en/PublicationsLibrary/presspb2017d10_en.pdf


circular economy; building materials; circular strategy; value chain cooperation; circular business models

Full Text: PDF