Mistra to continue funding research into circular economy transition

The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research has granted SEK 47 million for four years to Mistra REES. The aim of the programme is to facilitate the transition by Swedish manufacturing industry to a circular economy.

Mistra REES Mistra REES Thor Balkhed

Business and academia collaborate to facilitate the transition by Swedish manufacturing industry to more resource-efficient solutions.

Mistra REES, where “REES” is an acronym for “Resource-Efficient and Effective Solutions”, works to facilitate the transition to a more resource-efficient and circular economy. In a close collaboration between the academic and business worlds, researchers are working with partners to develop resource-efficient products, services and business models.

The programme started in 2015 and has now undergone evaluation by an international panel of experts, whose assessment is one of fulsome praise. The results from the first four years are considered to have been published with high productivity, and to have been disseminated not only to relevant courses of education at universities but also to key actors in society. The management and organisation of the programme have functioned well, according to the experts. Thus, the programme has been awarded financing for a further four years from the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research, Mistra.

“We are incredibly happy that Mistra retains its confidence in us, and made it possible to deepen our research into resource-efficient solutions”, says Mattias Lindahl, professor at LiU and programme director for Mistra REES.

SEK 76.5 million for four years

In addition to the grant of SEK 47 million from Mistra, the universities and partners will contribute a further SEK 29.5 million, giving the programme a budget of at least SEK 76.5 million.

“During the first four years we have focussed on examining business models, design strategies, and policies for resource-efficient solutions. In the second phase of Mistra REES, we intend to create in-depth knowledge about the design of products, services and business models, and to propose political measures for more resource-efficient and circular solutions. We hope to be able to implement and test these measures in practice”, says Mattias Lindahl.

Phase 2 of Mistra REES consists of three research projects, where Tomohiko Sakao, associate professor at LiU, is responsible for the largest: “REES design support at a company level”.  The other two are “Policy and laws affecting REES in companies” led by Carl Dalhammar of Lund University, and “Environmental and Financial Assessment of REES”, led by Maria Ljunggren Söderman of Chalmers University of Technology.

LiU is coordinator

Mistra REES is coordinated by Linköping University and collects researchers from LiU, Chalmers University of Technology, and the International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics at Lund University. More than ten senior researchers and ten doctoral students have been involved from the start. Around 15 small and large companies and organisations will participate in the second phase, and their involvement is necessary to reach the overall goal of increasing the pace of transition for Swedish manufacturing industry to more resource-efficient and circular solutions.

Translated by George Farrants

Mattias Lindahl Photo credit Thor Balkhed


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