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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/V029746/1
Title: UKRI National Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Hub
Principal Investigator: Charnley, Professor F
Other Investigators:
Smith, Ms MJ Hopkinson, Professor P
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Avieco Circle Economy Circular And Co
Circular Economy Hub Design Council Ellen Macarthur Foundation
IDEO KINGSPAN Knowledge Transfer Network Ltd
Oakdene Hollins Ltd Riversimple Movement Ltd SAP (UK) Ltd
The Manufacturing Technology Centre Ltd Zero Waste Scotland
Department: Science, Innov, Tech & Entrepreneurship
Organisation: University of Exeter
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 January 2021 Ends: 31 December 2024 Value (£): 3,673,166
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Design Engineering Innovation
Knowledge Management Operations Management
Waste Minimisation
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
15 Oct 2020 Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Hub Interview Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form

The National Interdisciplinary Circular Economy Hub will be led by Co-Directors and joint PI's Professors Peter Hopkinson and Fiona Charnley to harness and scale-up the UK's leading research capabilities, providing the evidence base, inspiration and capacity to accelerate the transition towards a global circular economy (CE). To achieve this ambitious vision, the CE-Hub will deliver a User Engagement Strategy targeted to meet the differing needs of three user groups NICER Circular Economy Centre consortia 2) CE research Collaborators, Experts and End Users 3) CE Communities and Wider Society

These objectives will be delivered through five pillars.

Pillar One: CE-Observatory. We will develop and deliver the UKs first National CE-Observatory to create a systemic data and modelling framework for the NICER programme.

The observatory will provide an evidence base to a) improve data quality and consistency across the NICER programme and wider policy initiatives b) improve modelling of resource flows across the UK relevant to CE system level interventions , c) quantify CE resource productivity, value creation and capture opportunities at scale, d) establish a common, agreed and consistent set of CE metrics and indicators and e) provide a source of evidence for a UK CE Road Map.

Pillar 2: Knowledge Platform. We will develop a CE Knowledge Platform to coordinate programme outputs and a repository of national research, knowledge, practical demonstration and implementation tools and enablers.

Outcomes and impacts of the CE knowledge platform include a) develop shared understanding of CE in theory and practice, principles and methods, b) improve the co-ordination, design and evaluation of CE case studies including detailed evidence of implementation pathways and opportunity c) generate knowledge and insight to inform key research, policy and industry solutions, d) identify UKRI and Innovate UK funding priorities, [c] create a gateway between the UK and International CE communities

Pillar 3: Impact and Innovation. The CE-Hub will facilitate mechanisms of interdisciplinary, cross-value chain collaboration and solution innovation; contributing towards the co-creation of a UK CE Road map.

Outcomes and impacts include a) increase the UK CE research and innovation capacity, b) build capability and experience of interdisciplinary CE collaboration c) create new CE value propositions, products, services and demonstrators capable of scaling and d) advance understanding of the pathways, enabling mechanisms and roadmaps to implementation.

Pillar 4: Inclusive Community and Pillar 5: Capacity Building. The CE-Hub will build and coordinate an inclusive and capable CE community to enable CE transformation through collaboration and communication. It will identify CE capability and skills gaps and inform future funding and training opportunities.

Outcomes and impacts include a) to embed multi-disciplinary understanding of CE principles, opportunities and pathways through a highly engaged community, b) the synthesis of evidence directed towards key stakeholder questions, c) to define CE skills, capacity requirements and career pathways d) to contribute to an increase in ECRs pursuing CE related careers and e) increase general consumer awareness of CE and influence informed behaviour and decision making.

Key Findings
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