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Implementing Circular Economy practices: a regional perspective

Implementing Circular Economy practices: a regional perspective
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Presenter(s) Ms. Sanja Arsova PhD student Management School, TUoS
Seminar type Research Student Seminar
Location online
Date and time 20/11/2020, 12:00-13:00
Organiser(s) South East European Research Center
Website http://

Regions are the kernel of the ongoing circular economy transition. Their controllable scale; proximity to environmental, social, and economic issues; and their knowledge and understanding of their local territories enables them to effectively mobilise regional stakeholders and develop suitable framework conditions. Nevertheless, their full potential has yet to be unlocked. Synchronised efforts are required, not only in the technical direction, but also to ensure supportive governance frameworks that can create incentives, encourage innovation, and generate information. Nonetheless, the existing academic knowledge base regarding the role of regions in the shift towards a circular economy is meagre (OECD, 2020).

The main aim of this study is to explore the drivers that can promote the adoption of circular economy practices at the regional level and investigate the resulting effect on regional performance. For this purpose, a systematic literature review was conducted, revealing a number of research gaps, pointing to a dearth of relevant research. To address these identified gaps, the research methodology was devised. Through the institutional isomorphism theoretical lens, the adoption of the regional circular economy practices will be studied as an outcome of institutional pressures (coercive, normative, and memetic).

This study adopts an inductive, qualitative approach. Publicly available secondary data will be used as a main source. Adopted or planned regional circular economy practices, institutional drivers stimulating regional efforts, and measurement systems to assess the level of circularity will be extracted and gathered into a comprehensive, large-scale database. The results will be analysed and used to organise and conduct focus groups with regional stakeholders, which will provide further insights. Following the integration of the findings from the primary and secondary data, a conceptual framework will be developed that will outline the different regional circular economy practices, the institutional drivers supporting these practices, and a measurement system able to assess the impact of those adopted practices. This study is intended to inform future regional policymakers on the proper combination of institutional pressures needed to unlock the full potential of the region for the circular economy journey.

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