Objective

To enhance Europe’s remanufacturing rate from its level of only 2%, recommendations about actions for SMEs have been idenitified by previous projects. Based on these, this proposal will develop an educational package for remanufacturing as well as hold 10 workshops with SMEs in five countries. Already 12 SMEs have signed letters of intent to participate. The aim is to support the SMEs plan their own development paths to remanufacturing.

The solution (technology)

Governments are advocating the transition to a more sustainable use of natural resources. Natural resources such as materials and energy are required to produce products. There therefore needs to be practical strategies to handle products, and the resources that comprise them, at the product’s end-of-life. The so called 6R end-of-life strategies are to do this are to reduce, reuse, recycle, recover, redesign and remanufacture. Remanufacture is the focus of this particular project.
This project is motivation by the fact that Europe only remanufactures 2% of products today, yet we can easily increase this significantly in the near future. To make that increase possible however requires developing the competences of companies, particularly small-to-medium-sized manufacturing firms.

This project aims to develop, pilot and hold educational courses for people who work in small and medium sized firms. The aim of the course is for people to identify their firm’s own competence development paths, and devise innovative business models, which involve the firm remanufacturing products into something new and valuable. It is intended to make the education attractive and relevant by enabling people and experts to interact and share experiences as well as using online tools and gamification.

The European Remanufacturing Council is committed to support this initiative, and 12 firms are prepared to participate in a pilot of the education course. The pilots will be held in five countries, the lessons learned will be assessed and the courses refined. Then the courses will be held again. The project will also plan a way of making sure the courses can be held after this project is completed.

The education approach is collaborative, participatory and constructive, utilizing interaction and sharing experience as well as the online interaction and gamification. The main idea that people working in companies can increase their understanding best through linking the learning to their experience and sharing this experience with other industry people. The learning material is built not only to be used individually but also as the basis for collaborative activities like workshops.

Partnership

  • Teknologian tutkimuskeskus VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd. VTT), Finland (Lead Partner)
  • Coventry University London, the UK
  • Digital, Internet, Materials & Engineering Co-Creation (DIMECC), Finland
  • Institut polytechnique de Grenoble (Grenoble Institute of Technology, INP), France
  • Oakdene Hollins, the UK
  • Technische Universiteit Delft (Delft University of Technology), the Netherlands
  • Wuppertal Institut fuer Klima, Umwelt, Energie GmbH (Wuppertal Institute), Germany