Publication: Circular economy in urban projects: a case studies analysis of current practices and tools
Over the last decade, the concept of circular economy has gained momentum among practitioners, politicians and scholars thanks to its promise of achieving sustainability goals. However, there remains a need to demonstrate and assess its positive environmental impacts. With respect to the building sector, circular economy is still a relatively new topic. To date, research has tended to focus primarily on the macro-scale (cities or eco-parks) and micro-scale (manufactured products or construction materials). Nevertheless, the often-neglected built environment is also expected to play a crucial role due to its high contribution to various environmental impacts. Accordingly, this paper aims to contribute to this growing area of research by reviewing four case studies of ‘circular neighbourhood’ projects in Europe. First, a conceptual framework analysis is defined and applied to the cases. Second, circular economy initiatives and actions are identified and classified using interviews and document analysis. Third, the use of assessment tools within these circular economy projects is investigated. The results demonstrate a diverse representation of the circular economy paradigm and a growing role played by the assessment tools.
Circular Economy, Life Cycle Assessment, Urban Project, Circular neighbourhood