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Industrial Sectors & Community Initiatives

The CIRCULAR research project focuses on two industrial sectors, the automotive supply sector and the building sector, as well as circular economy related community initiatives. The main arguments for choosing these two industrial sectors include that they represent an important part of the economic structure in both regions and that they have been the focus of numerous initiatives focusing on energy use as well as use of natural resources and reuse of materials.

Community initiatives represent part of the contextual environment in the two case regions, as well as exceed the limits of value chains and comprise a series of non-business and cross-sectional dimensions.

Automotive Supply Sector


Employees: 10,000 (1.7% of population)

Number of firms: 40

Turnover: over 1.5 billion €

Cluster: Luxembourg Auto Mobility Cluster

Västra Götaland

Employees: 30,000 (1.8% of population)

Number of firms: 150

Turnover: 11 billion €

Cluster: Göteborgs fordonskluster

Circular Economy initiatives relating to the automotive supply sector include fuel-efficient engines and design, recovery and rebuild of car parts as well as new business models such as car leasing and sharing programs and. They further include programs that focus on design and reuse programs that allow more materials to be retrieved and reused at higher value.

Building Sector


Västra Götaland

Energy use has been a focus area in the building sector for decades as buildings represent around a third of total energy use. Until recently, the emphasis has been on lowering the energy use during the lifetime of the building through isolation and other plans for energy efficiency. Circular Economy projects in the building industry also include initiatives that look at total energy use of the building, from sourcing and production of material until reuse or waist processes, designing buildings so that more of the building material can be reused and processes of creating valuable resources from demolished buildings.

In both of the case regions, new urban development projects focusing on Circular Economy include the design of urban areas for low use of cars, public transport using renewable energy and buildings constructed with reusable materials.

Community Initiatives

Community initiatives represent a part of the contextual environment in the two case regions, as well as exceed the limits of value chains and comprise a series on non-business and cross-sectoral dimensions. These initiatives therefore have the potential to be a part of a social innovation towards Circular Economy values and activities in all parts of life.

Community initiatives include a broad variety of activities, including for example, repair cafes, community supported farming, recycling shops and local car sharing initiatives.