Research on the impact of circular economy

Intesa Sanpaolo and the LIUC - Università Cattaneo collaborate on the research project "The transition of businesses to a circular economy: analysis of the implications in business processes and functions".

The future of the new generations must be ever greener.                                                 
It is the commitment that Europe has made with the new generations by launching the Green Deal program which aims to achieve the neutral emissions target by 2050.
Investments in the environment in the broadest sense of the term, and in the circular economy will create innovation and new jobs.

Circular economy: the principles of the new development model

The circular economy is a new model of economic and business development that aims at enhancing the use of natural resources to preserve the surrounding environment. In one sentence, the  circular model is based on the redesign of industrial processes and business models to generate economic and competitive advantage for companies, with a regenerative approach towards natural capital.

This is a cultural change, which contrasts the indiscriminate consumption with the approach of pay per use and recycling, to promote the full use of resources and extend their useful life cycle by reducing waste. To this is added a further key element represented by peer-to-peer relationships which are an important part of the thinking behind the circular economy, these guarantee an equal relationship between all the participants in the production cycle.
The adoption of the circular economy model involves new strategic visions in the remodeling of traditional production and organizational processes: it is necessary to rethink product design in terms of longevity, repairability, reuse and recycling.        
In addition, it is also necessary to redesign the distribution chains and marketing techniques to bring the value of new products to end customers.
The achievement of all this primarily involves the management of companies and includes all stakeholders as well as the academic world and research.                   
The common and virtuous actions carried out by all these actors generate innovation and sustainability and therefore economic and social growth, benefits for the community and business.

Intesa Sanpaolo Group is strongly committed to the transition to the circular economy, Intesa Sanpaolo Innovation Center is the company that oversees all the activities carried out in the area.

The collaboration between Intesa Sanpaolo and LIUC - Università Cattaneo

Intesa Sanpaolo and the LIUC - Università Cattaneo, taking on the commitment deriving from their role, have decided to take an active part in this transition phase.     
As part of the research, innovation and study support activities already provided by the Framework Agreement, the Bank and the University have launched the research project "The transition of businesses towards a circular economy: analysis of the implications in the and in corporate functions ".

Object and subjects involved in the research on manufacturing and SMEs

The research aims to observe and analyze the dynamics and impacts of the transition to the circular economy. It will focus on the manufacturing sector, SMEs and some sectors of interest from the the circular economy point of view, such as food, clothing, automotive and urban planning.                              
The research project will last two years, will involve young researchers from the University's School of Engineering and will be coordinated by prof. Federico Visconti - Rector of LIUC - Università Cattaneo, by prof. Raffaella Manzini - Director of the School of Industrial Engineering, and by prof. Andrea Urbinati who is entrusted with the Supervision activity.

The research will start from the milestones of the circular economy development model, namely: the new design criteria, the digitization of production processes, the remodeling of marketing strategies and the relationship with the customer, the rethinking of logistics and distribution, management of recycling and reuse, the final economic impacts for the company and the impact on sustainability for the community. From here the researchers will explore the dynamics and interconnections of the different phases, developing a thesis that will be enriched by proposals and operational solutions capable of making the transition to circular business models smooth and positive.
The research will also explore areas connected to the business world starting from digital technologies that help workers, customers and suppliers in acting their activities within the circular model, to arrive at Customer engagement, or ways, channels and formats with which companies involve customers in their circular initiatives.         
Finally, the research will have to identify the drivers and ways to develop and increase knowledge and culture on circular models in a widespread way.

The dissemination actions will see Intesa Sanpaolo and the University equally committed. Together, they will design and deliver training content and formats. LIUC teachers and Intesa Sanpaolo professionals, mutually borrowing their knowledge and expertise, will give lectures and testimonials to the students of the degree course, customers, suppliers and all the players in their respective networks

Promote change to make young people main protagonist

Sustainable development and circular economy are the sides of the same coin.
In addition to the scientific objectives, this bank - university collaboration aims to promote change by providing young people and businesses with scientific ideas and models to become the real protagonists of the necessary rethinking of lifestyles and production.
The research pursues the desire to promote scientific and conscious thinking towards young people, to make them increasingly attentive, receptive and ready to be leading figures of new challenges.                                                                    

Sustainability can only be achieved if institutions, citizens and companies assume their own share of responsibility.


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