Start Circles - Supporting TrAnsition from lineaR To CIRCuLar valuE chainS
The Start Circles project is one of the approved projects in the frame of the »Cooperation Programme Interreg V-A Slovenia-Austria«. Find out more about this Interreg program here.
Website of the project: http://www.si-at.eu/en2/start-circles/
Duration of the project: 01.09.2018 – 31.08.2021
Value of the project (all participating partners): € 686.039,24
- Gospodarska zbornica Slovenije (Lead Partner)
- Wood Carinthian Competence Center
- LIMNOS doo, Podjetje za aplikativno ekologijo
- asteenergy – Ingenieurbüro für erneuerbare Energie, Forst- und Holzwirtschaft Christoph Aste Dipl.Ing, Msc.
- Fakulteta za tehnologijo polimerov
- Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz
The shift towards a circular economy (entailing a number of new demands from relevant directives) presents new challenges: Companies will need to increase the use of recycled materials, innovate and introduce new technologies to improve material recovery and recycling. There are, however strong regional differences in the capacity for innovation in the program area and SMEs, especially lack information, activities, strategies and innovation partners necessary to tackle them. The project area offers good conditions to address these issues together. The program area has internationally connected RTD institutions in materials (polymers, wood) with a clear (political) commitment to sustainability.
The project objective is to increase sustainable innovation and resource efficiency in the program area, especially for SMEs. START CIRCLES is designed to enable SMEs better access to information, activities, as well as innovation partners in order to strengthen and support their cooperation with RTD partners.
The main project outcome is to sustainably integrate SMEs in cross-border innovation networks and circular economy oriented value chains to increase innovation and develop new products / materials. START CIRCLES has been developed from the perspective and needs of SMEs and RTD organizations. The project will monitor SMEs from innovation initiation to the launch of the new products while delivering new and sustainable support services for each phase.
The following approaches in the project are new/innovative:
- documentation and utilization of RTD skills for the circular economy
- establishment of new cooperation models, especially regarding reuse-oriented value chains (training of mediators / facilitators)
- supporting SME in RTD networks
- support the launch new products by developing new business models
- deliver a policy recommendation on a new theme: business models in the circular economy.