Closing loops through Industrial Symbiosis An exploration of how Dutch microbreweries can convert their wastes into resources through Industrial Symbiosis in a Circular Economy.

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The transition from a linear to a circular economy has increasingly gained attention over the past decade. An important aspect of this transition can be found in closing material loops. This research aimed to explore how Dutch microbreweries can convert their wastes into resources by cross-industrial collaborations, also called Industrial Symbiosis (IS). A case study has been conducted to find out why companies engage in circular practices, and an in-depth analysis was conducted to explore which conditions influence the emergence of Industrial Symbiosis, and whether they hinder or facilitate the process. Findings show that ecological motives were dominant over economic motives, which contradicts the general belief IS is a result of companies seeking for competitive advantage driven by economic incentives. In terms of the emergence process, it became apparent cases experienced multiple different barriers, overshadowing the enabling factors. This is partially caused by the small scales of the companies. Overall, this study provided an overview of the most important factors affecting the emergence of IS, including 32 propositions proving additional context. Furthermore, it emphasizes the importance of facilitators to share knowledge and best practices, as well as platforms to connect different actors in order to make waste-valuation work for SMEs.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen