Impronta Etica


Type 3: Multi-stakeholder urban alliance

Sector of the company/organisation


Other sector

CSR non profit organization

Name of activity/project (or solution offered)

LOWste - Local Waste Market for second life products

Relevant urban sustainability topic

resource-efficiency (waste, water, materials, circular economy,…)

Start year


End year


Brief project summary

The LIFE+ project LOWaste in Ferrara has experienced a pattern of circular economy based on prevention, reuse and recycling of waste in a logic of public-private partnerships. The project contributed to create a local district of green circular economy.

Short activity description

The project developed a market for reused and recycled products, by operating both on the supply side, by creating the conditions to intercept and give value to materials that can be reused and/or recycled and then put back in the market, and on the demand side, by promoting GPP – Green Public Procurement, and by finding instruments to boost “Green” purchasing.
Partnership agreements between the different stakeholders have guaranteed the success of the process.
In particular, whithin the project, the following actions have been developed:
-Life-cycle analysis of various sort of waste and selection of four promising waste streams
-Investigation of the local market for recycled products
-Collection of local, national and international best practices
-Analyses of the different legal frameworks to identify how to optimize waste management and recycling activities
-Training to improve the operators’ skills and the quality of materials
-Create partnership and code of conducts to integrate products in the local market through a smart use of GPP and “green” purchasing.
-Give the “new” products visibility and make sure they can access the local market
-Awareness raising campaign to promote the project at local, national and international level

Achieved impact

The LOWaste project:
- has created the foundation for the creation of a local market
- has already created the conditions necessary to intercept and exploit the materials that can be reused, recycled and put back on the market
- has developed policies GPP (Green Public Procurement ) and encouraged green procurement also by citizens, cooperatives and businesses
- has created a network of individuals, businesses, recovery and know -how able to grow and give birth to a real model of district of green circular economy based on waste.

Is this project a best practice? Why?

Because it has experienced an innovative model of circular economy that can allow the prevention, reuse and recycling of waste in a logic of public-private partnerships.
Because it has developed a local community involving different stakeholders.
Because the model that has been developed can be replicated in other contexts.

What are the main lessons learned during implementation?

- Short chains of circular recycling and reuse are possible, even in the absence of public funding or subsidies
- A public-private partnership approach between all actors can encourage the creation of synergies and cooperation between actors with often conflicting or divergent views (e.g. waste managers, agencies authorizatory, social cooperation, etc.)