Contours of the Circular Cities workshop of Holland Circular hotspot


In a city, everything comes together. The vast majority of people live in cities. It is the place where people, live, work and recreate. If we cannot make cities more sustainable and viable we cannot reach the Climate Goals nor the SDG’s. Cities are is the place of action and time is increasingly running out.

A lot has been written about cities from different viewpoints: smart cities, sustainable cities, resilient or climate adaptive cities. Typical city topics like the built environment, energy & mobility are interlinked and ask for a system approach. We approach cities from the perspective of Circular Economy, an inspiring concept that is, true to its name, about economy, and viable business models. But it is also about sustainability. The concept of keeping the value of products and materials in the loop as high and long as possible is very central in this vision. But a circular economy is also about renewable energy, respect for biodiversity and social inclusiveness. It is about people and businesses that interact and find new ways of collaboration and preserve and create value.

A circular economy in cities can start small and deliver results “close to home. A result, like for example a revitalised building and the creation of meaningful jobs, is something that people can identify with and that inspires them to scale up. Solutions can jump from quarter to quarter, each in their own context and with their own local hero.

We have many circular examples from our home base in the Netherlands. We believe that a lot of these concepts can work in both developed and developing countries. Together we will explore if that is true and what will work.
Examples that are inspirational, actionable and have the potential to scale up. In the workshop, we will include circular examples from the built environment, mobility, energy, feeding and greening the city, water management and cross-sectoral topic like consumer goods and plastics. We aim to inspire and invite you work together on solutions that can be adapted to your reality.

We go further than just sharing technological solutions. The main challenges might be more linked to social innovation and lie in the domain of design and coalition building. A circular economy is a system change and asks for collaboration. We will discuss what a local government can do, what knowledge institutes can do and naturally speaking what local entrepreneurs can do as they are the main actors of a scale-up.

Please join us in the discussion!

Credits: City Hall Venlo, photo by Gemeente Venlo, Ton Desar

ORGANIZED BY: Holland Circular Hotspot

Conference Organiser

NABC is the leading Dutch networking organization for trade and investment facilitation on the African continent.