On 5 July 2017, ACR+ concluded its first training course, organised in cooperation with Venice International University. A total of 24 participants took part in the three-day training course, including 10 ACR+ members’ representatives. Other participants were coming from other public authorities at national and local level, and representatives of the private sector and consultancies.

The course included lectures, workshops and site visits addressing the topic of circular economy policies and practices, with the aim of providing participants with practical advices and guidelines on how to implement circular economy at national, regional and local level. Some cases have been presented, in particular strategies implemented in China, Brussels, and Scotland. The presence of Professor David Peck was appreciated, not only for his knowledge but also for challenging the presentations and providing food for thought along with other presenters’ interventions.

Plastics were also at the core of the discussions on the second day, with presentations of German cases and a study visit to ACR+ member Contarina. The third and final day completed the picture by making links with the collaborative economy and highlighting the importance of public procurement as a tool to leverage circular solutions and stimulating innovation.

The workshops gave the opportunity to work in small groups on exercises related to territorial mapping, stakeholders’ engagement and project development. These exercises were adaptable enough to be easily replicable in the participants’ territories and put forward the importance of building bridges between the various stakeholders of a territory in order to build efficient circular economy strategies.

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