The team behind Reincarnate gathered in Sweden from 19 to 20 October to discuss their progress, exchange ideas and plan their next steps before their review with the European Commission. The Ragn-sells group, a private corporate group involved in waste management, environmental services, and recycling in Sweden, hosted the meeting. They invited all 16 members of Reincarnate to their facilities to celebrate the General Assembly and visit their waste management treatment plant. This was a great opportunity for the team to learn and gain insights from the host partner.

On the first day of the meeting, Ragn-sells introduced and welcomed the Reincarnate team. They delivered a presentation on the Paris Agreements, the Stockholm Convention, and the importance of critical raw materials. Thanks to these insights, the team behind Reincarnate reflected on the challenge of obtaining information and the significance of circular thinking. After that, Timo Hartmann, Project Coordinator, opened the meeting and emphasised its importance for the upcoming review. “This meeting is an opportunity to be critical and constructive in assessing the status of our project,” highlighted Hartmann.

From the CP-IM Reincarnate platform to the ten innovations and eleven demonstrators, to communication and the social approach, every work package leader and task leader showcased the advancements and progress made after one year of the project. A significant milestone for Reincarnate will be the upcoming ontology that will be created by our technical coordinator, Demo Consultants. We recognise the need for more agreement in circular economy terminology, and this document represents an essential step towards establishing a common framework. “Our ontology will be a formal, explicit specification of a shared conceptualization,” affirmed Samaneh Rezvani, Senior Project Manager at Demo Consultants.

During the meeting, we visited Ragn-sells’ Ash2Salt plant in Sweden, which offered a timely opportunity to learn about their operation. We were taken to their waste separation plant for hazardous waste, tyres and rubber granulate, recovered wood chips, scrap metal, WEEE, plastics and paper. The visit gave us a remarkable insight into their expertise and efforts in circular economy. Our Swedish partner is highly experienced and can assist with various business proposals, including the collection and delivery of waste within Sweden, as well as exports to other European countries for eco-friendly on-selling.

Last month, the Reincarnate team conducted a workshop in Rotterdam, where we had the opportunity to reflect on the barriers that hinder the adoption of circular solutions in the construction industry. The workshop was organised by Erasmus University Rotterdam, and its discussions and results were shared at the General Assembly. We identified various challenges, including sociocultural, behavioral, financial, legislative, educational and market barriers. 

To end the first day on a creative note, the team organised innovation pitches for work package leaders. The objective was to showcase their work, creatively and persuasively demonstrating its importance. The winner of the activity was Samaneh Rezvani from work package one, specifically for her presentation on the Ontology. Additionally, we conducted workshops on robotics and demonstrations to generate ideas for the project and to gain a standard perspective on these aspects of the Reincarnate project.

On the second day of the General Assembly, the project’s technical board held a meeting to discuss the day-to-day progress of the project. This group is responsible for finding strategies to achieve our objectives in a timely manner. The meeting was very productive, and we were able to come to a common understanding despite the many internal challenges that a project like Reincarnate presents.

In addition to the day-to-day progress discussions, our partners working on the standardisation plan, demonstrators and innovations presented their progress. The main objective was to analyse and plan the expectations of each end-user of the demonstrators, which can be used in other similar cases. Furthermore, Demo Consultants, the partner responsible for exploiting results, conducted an interactive workshop on CP-IM Reincarnate. In the workshop, we worked in groups to define the value proposition of our innovative platform, as well as value creation, capture, growth, and management. The workshop was productive and dynamic.

During the two-day meeting, we were unable to establish a concrete definition of our strategies to meet our objectives. Therefore, for the upcoming review meeting, we believe that preparation, proactivity, and support from all team members are essential for success. Additionally, we have discussed the importance of improved communication and interrelation between our work to achieve our goals. We would like to express our gratitude to our host partner, Ragn-sells, and every member of the Reincarnate team for making the meeting a success. The gathering provided an opportunity for reflection, learning, preparation, and brainstorming ideas. We will continue to develop our social and technical means to transform the construction industry into a circular one.