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2019-03-07 [

Stephan Schmidt

]

Building and living in a circular economy

Looking back at the workshop for the development of circular products and business models in Graz

For the second national stakeholder workshop the Ecodesign Research Group and the Austrian Institute of Ecology set up a cooperation with Circular Futures – Circular Economy Platform Austria and BauKarussell which operates in selective dismantling and reuse projects of buildings.

The co-hosted workshop took place in the city of Graz on February 27th 2019. Besides the multi stakeholder exchange with the chosen location the opportunity of presenting KATCH_e in a different region in Austria was given. But not only locals took part: around 40 participants from business, academia, public and private institutions from various regions followed our invitation.

In the morning, the legal framework both on EU and local level formed the introduction to the challenges and potentials of circularity and how KATCH_e materials as well as BauKarussell activities offer possible solutions. In the afternoon, three Austrian companies presented their challenges & activities: Internorm (windows), doka (formwork specialist and KATCH_e partner) and Lukas Lang Building Technologies (modular wood buildings).

The audience has been very much interested and actively involved with discussions which continued in the following four workshop groups: 

I Circular Desgin by taking the example of carpet flooring

II Business Models by taking the example of windows

III KATCH_up! game by taking the example of modular building systems

IV Selective building dismantling as a business model

The day was finished by a nearby visit of a large construction site (Reininghausgründe Graz) which demonstrated the challenges and potentials of the on-site use of building materials and importance of new cooperations and partners in such a big endeavor.

It was impressive what`s already on the way towards a more circular economy, but there is much left to do. The inputs from the participants have been very positive and gave rise to further improvements of the KATCH_e materials and maybe common activities.