Quite a few of the topics we’ve covered here are intersecting in this European initiative.
The REFLOW Project aims to develop circular and regenerative cities through enabling active citizen involvement and systemic change to re-think the current approach to material flows in cities. The project utilizes Fab Labs and maker spaces as catalysts for change in urban and peri-urban environments.”
Within REFLOW, six pilot cities tested diverse approaches to circularity in cities by focussing on the flow of resources in urban settings and on the “making” aspect to empower citizens and engage various governmental and industrial partners.
The regenerative aspect is important, as we’ve discussed here many times, and the project took an intriguing approach to that.
The REFLOW project builds on the concept of the ‘urban metabolism’ which seeks to understand the city and its surrounding region through the lens of biological systems and technical processes. The project will calculate, analyze, and redefine urban resource usage through specific social, environmental, and economic indicators in order to assess the relationship between urban production and consumption.
Their blog is packed with great articles on the varied projects and events the community fostered through the program, like Creating new circular loops, Waste Heat Radar Ready for Europe, or Food Market 4.0 Dashboard. The knowledge hub, pilot programs, and community tools are all well documented and share a wealth of insights.
I initially “bumped into” Reflow thanks to the very nicely done video below, closing off Reflow Paris.
It’s a good overview of the initiative, provides glimpses of the fantastic Fab City Grand Paris, and some of the projects run in Paris like reusing wood and building material from the Maison et objets fair from one year for the next; Dimension-us, an open and low-cost measuring and documenting kit for material re-use; the Re Label shared label that helps to document the origin of materials used; and Drive studio, a startup studio focused on the construction industry. Lots of inspiring projects, people, and locations.