The Chair participates in the presentation of the study "Citizens and the circular economy"

The director of the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF participates in the debate about the role of citizens in the challenges of the circular economy held during the presentation.

The study carried out by the Creafutur Foundation involves the participation of ESCI-UPF, among the 14 public and private entities responsible for the work.

Citizens and the circular economy

Panel discussion “How to involve citizens in the challenges posed by the circular economy?”.

The director of the UNESCO Chair in Life Cycle and Climate Change ESCI-UPF, Pere Fullana i Palmer, has participated in the panel discussion “How to involve citizens in the challenges posed by the circular economy?”, during the presentation of the study “Citizens and the circular economy”. This study, carried out by theCreafutur Foundation,, promoted by the Generalitat de Catalunya and ESADE, involves 14 public and private entities, including the Mango Chair in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) ESCI-UPF. The work analyses the behaviours, attitudes and perceptions of citizens regarding sustainability and the adoption of circular economy practices such as reuse or recycling. In addition, it identifies good practices at local and international level to accelerate the transition to the circular economy.

Last Tuesday, July 3, the Palau Robert in Barcelona hosted the presentation of the study “Citizens and the Circular Economy,” organised by ESADE, the Generalitat de Catalunya and Creafutur, involving the participation of ESCI-UPF, the host institution of the Chair. The secretary of Environment and Sustainability at the Generalitat de Catalunya, Marta Subirà, was responsible for welcoming the event, highlighting the case of Mango, which collects used clothing in stores. The introduction to the study was given by the president of Creafutur, Ferran Rodés, and Oriol Alcoba, general director of ESADECREAPOLIS.

During the event, issues such as the behaviour of citizens, the role of companies or the role of public administrations were discussed. The journalist Georgina Ferri moderated the debate that involved the director of the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF, as well as Francesc Giró, director of Strategic Planning at the Agència de Residus de Catalunya, Montse Bayen, director of Bymyeco, Damián Martín, director of eCooltra and Andrés Fernández, Director of Ciudadano Kane Comunicación. According to Fullana i Palmer, “The majority of citizens who are proactive are getting involved. Now, it is time to motivate the change of habits of those reactive, who only mobilize themselves when something involves them, applying more punitive measures.”


Current situation and future perspectives

“The circular economy arises to respond to the need to transform the economic model that has prevailed (and continues to prevail) in industry and consumption: the linear economy. It is clear that the classic system of extraction of resources of nature, transformation, production, sale and elimination of the consumed products, is not sustainable,” highlights Creafutur. Therefore, “the transition from a linear system to a circular one will require the involvement of the three agents of society: public administration, companies and citizens,” the Foundation concludes. And Fullana i Palmer adds: “The Pact for the Circular Economy has been promoted by Spain Government, which includes in its second article the need to use life cycle assessment and ecodesign methodologies to adopt the most correct measures. In this sense, the Generalitat has a very powerful ecodesign programme.”

With the aim of identifying the different profiles of citizens, based on their declared behavior and attitudes on aspects related to sustainability and the circular economy, the study includes “2,534 interviews to citizens, a collection of exemplary private initiatives in the implementation of models of circular business and interviews with experts from different fields in the field of circular economy and sustainability,” as explained by responsibles from Creafutur. In addition, “it includes a reference trip to Scotland to interview public institutions and companies that are leading the transition to the circular economy,” they add.

In order to measure the level of “circularity” of these citizens, Creafutur has developed the Circular Index (CI) from the perception that citizens have about their attitudes, among others: if they separate domestic garbage, if they try to extend the useful life of the products, if they buy second-hand products, what waste they recycle or which one they separate. Regarding the index, both Spanish and Scottish citizens do not reach 50% of the CI. By age groups, citizens aged between 45 and 55 have a higher CI (47.5%), while the youngest sector of the population (18 to 29 years old) has a lower CI (40.8%).

The study has been prepared by 14 public and private entities: ACCIÓ, Agència de Residus de Catalunya (ARC), Banc Sabadell, Barcelona de Serveis Municipals (B: SM), Department of Territory and Sustainability of the Generalitat de Catalunya, Diputació de Barcelona, Endesa, Gallina Blanca-GBfoods, Holaluz, ISP, Mango Chair in RSC ESCI-UPF, Naturgy, Puig and Veritas.


About Creafutur

Creafutur is a private non-profit foundation created in 2006 with the support of the Generalitat de Catalunya and ESADE, the Escuela Superior de Administración y Dirección de Empresas (Higher School of Business Administration and Management). The aim of the Foundation is to help all types of organisations to identify innovative business opportunities with a positive social and environmental impact.


About ESCI-UPF

ESCI-UPF includes in its statutes the objective: “The provision of training and research services within the international area of the company that covers any field of sustainability management.” To fulfil this objective, the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF (consolidated research group recognised by Generalitat de Catalunya) incorporates into its studies, in addition to the environmental sphere, the social perspective, with researchers from the Mango Chair in RSC, and the economic one, with the research group Research in International Studies and Economics (RISE). .

 

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