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Territorial repair networks for sustainable production and consumption

Abstract : The ongoing race towards innovation and growth, continuously sustained by new products, has shaped a "throwaway era" overwhelmed by waste. Despite the European Waste Framework Directive, European economy is surprisingly wasteful and continues to operate a take-make-dispose system, leading to adverse business decisions such as planned product obsolescence. Repair workshops, which generally come from social or environmental movements, propose to develop second-life markets with repaired or upcycled products. These niche-innovations, based on small networks of actors sharing a set of expectations and visions are structured across networks (RREUSE, repair café, Open Repair Alliance, etc.). They are crucial actors to decrease waste flows, while creating local sustainable values (e.g. less environmental impacts, social cohesion, citizen networks), and their legitimacy mainly come from the mind and behaviors of consumers, and not from public policies. Transition of repair-reuse niche-initiatives to a more socio-technical regime (Geels, 2002) requires co-evolution from a cultural, technological, economic, societal point of view as there is a need for a co-evolution between trajectories (policy, science, user practices, markets,...) (Geels, Shot, 2015) and not just from the waste management point of view. Indeed, repair and reuse patterns question consumption and production, institutional landscape at local scales, as well as the mainstream economic growth paradigm. Recyluse is an ongoing research project whose ambition is to develop a methodology to support the development of resilient territorial repair networks and to question their role and potential contribution to system innovation for sustainability. Product design and related business model, consumer habits, socio-cultural context, or the current legislation of waste management create strong barriers to scale up existing repair workshop niches to resilient territorial repair networks. Recyluse proposes to experiment living labs to facilitate the transition from hyper-consumption to more qualitative and less quantitative consumption, a better integration of citizens into the waste management and the structuration of repair-reuse networks anchored in local ecosystems based on existing isolated grass-root initiatives. Finally, it will contribute to the improvement and the recognition of product reuse and repair. To do so, we first question the expectations and motivations of the different stakeholders directly or indirectly associated to repair activities in territories (users, repair actors, industrial designers, NGO, public actors). Through this analysis, institutional and economic locks will be identified to develop robust business model for territorial repair networks. Secondly, we propose to develop repair-oriented living labs, as a tool to facilitate collaboration between these stakeholders, in order to align their expectations in terms of reparable products. The main objective of this project is to facilitate the transition from hyper-consumption to more qualitative and less quantitative consumption, to better integrate citizens in the waste management and to support the emergence of structured network anchored in local ecosystems. This research-action is based on a multidisciplinary theoretical framework and methodology. This research mobilizes different sociology fields as use and consumption sociology (Desjeux, 2006), sciences and technic sociology (Akrich, 2010), sociology of organization (actors’ networks, industrial and territorial ecology). Multi-actor collaboration is also explored with design engineering (Design for Dismantling, Design for Recycling) (Pialot et al, 2013), eco-innovation (Tyl et al. 2016), Do-It-Yourself design (Bonvoisin et al, 2016) and co-design, (Fuad Luke, 2006). The methodology crosses traditional tools and methods from sociology as field studies (semi-directive interviews, group focus, observations) and innovative tools (as living labs) supported by engineering sciences (Eco innovation and product design). This communication presents initial reflections and the structuration of this research-action project. We also expose the two territories implied in this research project: Coeur de Savoie and the Agglomeration Pays Basque as well as first observations (initiatives and stakeholders, institutional landscape and main issues to territorial repair networks deployment).
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Contributor : Romain Allais Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - 10:18:27 AM
Last modification on : Saturday, June 25, 2022 - 8:03:23 PM


  • HAL Id : halshs-01906486, version 1


Romain Allais, Julie Gobert, Benjamin Tyl. Territorial repair networks for sustainable production and consumption. International Sustainability Transition Conference, Jun 2018, Manchester, United Kingdom. ⟨halshs-01906486⟩



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