Publications

regenerative circular economy. The circular economy has been widely employed to mean an economy where materials flow in loops or cycles, human activity runs on renewable energy, economic growth is decoupled from resource use, and natural capital is invested in.


With the term regenerative circular economy, we aim to emphasize three main themes. First, we use the term regenerative to place emphasis on net-positive outcomes and expand beyond the narrow focus of system optimization towards more generative, creative system outcomes. Second, our vision of a regenerative circular economy also foregrounds the importance of place-based and context-specific analysis and action. Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach to circular economy principles, we emphasize principles that frame the economy as a nested system spanning local, regional, national, and global scales of production and consumption. In particular, local and regional scales are where latent regenerative potential can be found. Third, we take inspiration from living systems by foregrounding change and adaptive management of socio-ecological systems. We propose learning from the way

resources in natural ecosystems flow. This leads us away from a mindset of engineering tightly controlled closed loops of materials that are isolated from living systems to designing our products to be nutrients for living systems at local and regional scales.

Bolumburu Pilar, Corbin Liz, Coudard Antoine, Garmulewicz Alysia, Powell Zoe, Singh Apurva, & Smith Charlene. (2021). REFLOW Circular Principles for Cities. Zenodo.

The Cities’ Circular Action Plans (CCAP) are roadmaps for the transition toward circular and regenerative cities. The report containing the CCAP gathers the competences of the consortium to create viable ways for the pilot cities to implement CE practices and ensures replicability. In line with the overall structure of the project, The REFLOW Cities’ Circular Action Plan operates on two levels: Project Level and Pilot Level. On a Project Level, the CCAP is described as the overall Roadmap that determines the general direction and modes of organising of the whole consortium. On a Pilot Level, the CCAP refers to the specific action plans created by the REFLOW cities, within the broader Roadmap of the project. The action plans are mainly concerned with the management and implementation of local activities aimed at achieving the pilot-specific objectives. The CCAP gathers the resources created and implemented by the project consortium to overcome the challenges encountered or expected by the pilot cities thus fostering replicability. The CCAP will turn into a living, online document that will provide resources for cities to become regenerative and implement circular economy practices. The CCAP as a digital resource will last beyond the life of the REFLOW project.

Parisi, Cristiana, Beye, Andrea, Bekier, Justyna, & Keremis, Anestis. (2020). Cities’ Circular Action Plans. Zenodo.

First, the REFLOW Collaborative Governance Toolkit, outlines the design framework and overall journey which underpin the development of collaborative governance arrangements in the six pilot cities of the REFLOW project. Furthermore, it describes the core activities that, along the journey, will represent the concrete ground for collaborative governance experimentation and learning, and thereby the terrain for the development of specific tools and supporting resources which will feed the Toolkit over time. Lastly, this document also explains how the Toolkit is meant to be implemented over time in order to crystallize our progress and make it accessible to both the REFLOW partners and other interested cities and stakeholders. The current outlook of the Toolkit reflects a number of activities implemented in the first year of the project, including exploratory research on collaborative governance, pilot cities’ policy review, mapping of existing tools and guidelines for the circular economy in cities, analysis of the Pilot Cities Action Plans developed by the REFLOW Cities, as well as scoping out of their core challenges and opportunities.


Frosini, Valentina, Niaros, Vasilis, Pavlaki, Kelly, Pazaitis, Alex, Martelloni, Laura, Juarez, Milena, & Unceta, Pablo Munoz. (2020). Collaborative Governance Toolkit (beta version). Zenodo.

This document contains the use cases and requirements for the technical tools that support the pilot cities in Reflow becoming more sustainable by incentivising circular practices in local ecosystems through monitoring and optimization of urban metabolic processes. This document describes the effort undertaken within the context of Task 2.1 Use Case Analysis and Requirements and points out in detail the methodology used to create the use cases and to collect the requirements for both tools, ReflowOS and the Open Data Dashboard.

Bruns, Lina, Dittwald, Benjamin, Minutillo, Ivan, & Unceta, Pablo Muñoz. (2020). Use Case Analysis and Requirements. Zenodo.

This deliverable summarizes and validates new CE production and the technological
infrastructure within REFLOW, including the description of the possible outcomes around the adoption of CE practices in the pilot cities.

Maffei, Stefano, Bianchini, Massimo, De Salvo, Veronica, Carraro, Martina, & Leoni, Stefano. (2020). Co-Production Practices in Pilot Cities. Zenodo.

Circular Principles and Indicators lays out the key concepts and components of WP3’s Circular Urban Metabolism framework – (1) Circular Principles, (2) principle-level and pilot-specific key performance indicators, and (3) urban metabolism assessments – as well as the methodologies undertaken to derive them and the resulting outcomes. In doing so, it chronicles the activities undertaken and results derived by WP 3 within the first year of the REFLOW project.

Corbin, Liz, Coudard, Antoine, Garmulewicz, Alysia, Powell, Zoe, Singh, Apurva, Smith, Charlene, & Bolumburu, Pilar. (2020). REFLOW_D3.1_Circular Principles and Indicators. Zenodo.

This document describes the overall Pilot Cities Framework (general and city-specific objectives, activities, deliverables, KPI, and roles of partners) as well as the foreseen management and monitoring methods. It will also include (i) internal communication tools, in order to coordinate the progress of tasks, align the development of each Pilot and share feedback, lessons learnt, outcomes, and (ii) a set of potential indicators to measure Pilots’ effectiveness.

Ista Boszhard, Taco van Dijk, Lotte Geeraedts, Daniel Heltzel, Max Kortlander, Minh Man, … Meia Wippoo. (2020). Detailed Pilot Planning and Evaluation Framework (Version 1.0). Zenodo.

The REFLOW Handbook is a practical resource designed to assist cities in their transition to circular and regenerative cities. This Handbook is open, iterative and participatory. The Handbook contextualises REFLOW and offers an initial investigation into the element of urban governance innovation, particularly with respect to the circular economy. Specifically, this document builds on exploratory research aimed at ‘collaborative governance design’, which will be further explored and expanded on within the REFLOW pilot cities. The Handbook concludes with an initial series of tested tools meant to assist cities in navigating the first steps of the transition.

Laura Martelloni, Milena Juarez, Sally Bourdon, Ida Jusic, Erwan Mouazan, Vasilis Niaros, Tomas Diez, Pablo Muñoz & Zartashia Ahmed. (2019). The REFLOW Handbook. Zenodo.

The Data Management Plan (DMP) of the REFLOW project outlines how the project data will be handled during the lifetime of the project and after the project is completed. It gives an overview of which data will be collected, processed and/or generated, which methodology and standards will be applied, whether and how this data is shared and/or made open access, and finally how it is curated and preserved. This initial version of the DMP provides a set of standard guidelines to ensure that all the REFLOW partners manage their data following the FAIR Data principles while being compliant with the EU GDPR. The DMP is a living document and will be updated, whenever significant changes arise, to support the data management lifecycle for all data generated in the project.

Milena Juarez, Guillem Camprodon, & Pablo Muñoz. (2019). Data Management Plan (Version 1.0). Zenodo.

Presentation Materials

Presentation for the City Science Initiative’s Circular Economy Virtual Workshop (25 May 2020) where PCO and Associate Professor Cristiana Parisi and the Municipality of Milan’s Project Manager, Rosanna Torri presented the REFLOW Project and the Milan Pilot City. 

Cristiana Parisi and Rossana Torri. (2020). REFLOW Project: Milan Pilot City. City Science Initiative Virtual Workshop on Circular Economy.