Fab Lab Barcelona, one of the dynamic innovation hubs of the Institute for Advanced Architecture of Cataluña (IAAC), has joined a European consortium REFLOW with the aim to deliver a three year H2020 European Union funded research project aiming to systematically change waste processes in cities. The project aims to contribute real-world prototypes through the development of six pilots that contribute towards circular economy and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. It is in line with the aims of the Fab City movement, which will develop tools for city metrics which will feed data into the DIDO model (Data In, Data Out), rather than a PITO model (Product In, Trash Out).
Cities currently consume more resources than they produce, in which, expanding urban populations will have an increased responsibility towards. The REFLOW project aims to systemically change waste processes – creating a system which sees value in waste. IAAC will take part in this project led by Project Manager Milena Juarez. Milena has an extensive background in industrial ecology to material flow analysis in the urban context. REFLOW aims to address the global problem of waste through creating significant examples which contribute towards a circular economy and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.
REFLOW builds on the urban metabolic concept – through understanding the biological and technical processes of cities, it is possible to identify and incentivise circular practices in local ecosystems through blockchain technologies. The project will seek out existing fab labs and makerspaces as a focal point and “catalyst for change” to seek out waste solutions. The upcoming years will consist of creating data visualisations and mapping of material streams; identifying stakeholders; developing methodologies and tools for scalability and citizen engagement. This is in line with the aims of the Fab City movement, which will develop tools for city metrics which will feed data into the DIDO model (Data In, Data Out), rather than a PITO model (Product In, Trash Out). (Read the Fab City manifesto here).
The project is lead by Copenhagen Business School, alongside partners the Danish Design Centre, IAAC (Spain), Fraunhofer (Germany), Politecnico de Milano (Italy), Metabolic Cooperative (Netherlands), WAAG Society (Netherlands), Fab City Grand Paris (France), Dyne.org (Netherlands) and several others. The other cities joining the REFLOW project are Amsterdam, Milan, Berlin, Paris and Cluj-Napoca. The REFLOW project is funded by Horizon 2020.