Circular economy is a sustainable economic model that aims to minimise waste and preserve natural resources by promoting the reuse and recycling of materials. The CirCoAX project by CircularInnoBooster is a unique accelerator programme, developed with funding from the EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (COSME), that supports small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the textile and fashion industry to transition towards a regenerative and circular economy.
Unlike the conventional "growth fixated" unicorn accelerator models, CirCoAX is a "zebra" accelerator that emphasises collaboration and resilience in cooperation. The programme uses a 4-Helix model of collaboration, which brings together research and education, companies, the public sector, and citizens to promote lateral growth in resilience, regeneration, social inclusion, ecological and social impact, and economic sustainability.
One of the shining examples of CirCoAX's success is a collaboration between a family-owned long-established spinner factory and other stakeholders in the textile industry to recover European natural textile production and re-localise the industry. The project seeks to restore the value of local wool, currently incinerated and given away as waste, by involving farmers, cooperatives, local authorities, other companies, young fashion students, and women entrepreneurs in the production process. The aim is to create natural wool garments and products that are distributed through local retailers across Spain, while avoiding long shipments and transport to keep to a kilometre-zero (KM0) philosophy.
CircularInnoBooster is working with Human Nation to co-design and develop CirCoAX.
Regenerating, restoring and recovering the damage that has already been done, and building new systems for a viable future for human civilization requires a profound cultural change, going deep to the heart to transform the predominant extractive socio-economic systems built principally for economic gains by a minority, which is a centuries or even millennia old system. ‘Sustainability’ is a step in the right direction, but it is not enough to meet the SDG targets and reverse the climate emergency, urgently needed for human survival and planetary system health,” - Sharam Yalda of Human Nation.
CirCoAX is a pioneering accelerator programme that supports SMEs in the textile and fashion industry to transition towards a regenerative and circular economy. The programme's unique approach emphasises collaboration and resilience in cooperation, promoting lateral growth in sustainability and economic impact. The success of CirCoAX is evident in the collaboration between a family-owned spinner factory and other stakeholders to recover European natural textile production and re-localise the industry, while creating natural wool garments and products that are distributed through local retailers across Spain.
This project is funded by the EU Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (COSME)