Creation of the research chair on the "Circular economy and urban metabolism"

Xavier LEMOINE, Vice-President of the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority with responsibility for the circular economy, the collaborative economy, and the social and solidarity economy and Jean-Bernard KOVARIK, Deputy Managing Director of IFSTTAR

IFSTTAR and the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority have created a research chair on the circular economy and metropolitan urban metabolism

IFSTTAR, Europe's leading research institute for transport, cities and regions, offers solutions to make our cities more accessible, more energy and resource efficient and more resilient to climate change. These themes are also central concerns of the partners in the "urban metabolism" group of the Futurs Urbains LABEX, members of IFSTTAR and of the University Paris Est Marne la Vallée or the EIVP (Ecole des ingénieurs de la ville de Paris). Moreover, these institutions will join forces on 1 January 2020 to create the Gustave Eiffel University[i]. The École d'Architecture de la Ville & des Territoires Paris-Est (EAV&T (School of Architecture for Cities and Regions), the École Nationale des Sciences Géographiques Géomatique - The National  School of Geomatics (ENSG) and the ESIEE Paris Engineering School will also be part of this new entity.

At the same time, the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority, which is particularly involved in the planning and economic, social and cultural development of the metropolitan area, is seeking to improve knowledge about the physical aspects of the metropolitan area. The aim is to understand its composition and operation in order to identify the major tasks that will pave the way for the strategic and operational process needed to make the Metropolis a circular economy zone.

This context in which the "Circular Economy & Urban Metabolism" Chair was set up. This chair was officially created on 9 September 2019 in order to give substance to the agreement establishing the programme that had been signed in May 2019.

The "Circular Economy & Urban Metabolism" chair, which has been created for an initial 3-year term, aims primarily to assist the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority in the implementation and promotion of its circular economy policy. The Chair will support the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority in its desire to instil and implement the principles of the circular economy throughout its various departments and among the region's stakeholders, through a process of cooperation and knowledge sharing. This support will include creating decision-making tools that will help monitor and evaluate the impact of the actions of the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority, but also help build up knowledge about the circular economy, based on case studies of mainland France or the results of foreign initiatives. In addition, partnering with the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority  gives IFSTTAR the opportunity to pursue its activities in support of public policies and to discuss the findings and concerns of researchers with grassroots actors.

Drawing also on an international research network that includes the Université de Montréal and the Université Libre de Bruxelles, the Chair will organise discussions between the academic community and stakeholders in the Grand Paris Metropolitan Authority. It will thusenable the Authority to confirm its international standing in the field of the circular economy and the urban metabolism.



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