The Horizon Europe project RISERS is up and running!

On 18-19 January 2024, CEN and CENELEC in Brussels hosted the kick-off meeting of the Horizon Europe Project RISERS: A Roadmap for Industrial Symbiosis Standardization for Efficient Resource Sharing. This three-year initiative will pave the way to develop standards that support building symbiotic collaborations among industries and sectors that allow keeping resources in productive use for longer.

Industrial symbiosis (IS) refers to collaborative and mutually profitable relationships between different industries and/or sectors to improve resource utilization and productivity. It creates an interconnected industrial landscape where one company or sector uses underutilized resources, such as waste, by-products, residues, energy, water, infrastructures, expertise, equipment, materials from another company or sector, with the result of keeping resources in productive use for longer and for an economic profit.


Despite obvious benefits, industrial symbiosis is still not a widely adopted practice for building future-proof industries due to a number of reasons. The processes to establish
a symbiotic relationship are complex, opportunities often lie outside one sector, the involvement of large players often excludes SMEs, and many stakeholders’ participation is needed. To build win-win cases and incentivise industrial symbiosis, industries and policy makers need a robust framework applicable to diverse industrial settings, addressing issues like the need for a common agreement and understanding of terms and principles, interchangeable resources among industries and industry sectors, compatible and interoperable systems, and practices and processes that comply with regulatory requirements.


The EU-funded project RISERS addresses these challenges by developing a roadmap that defines areas and directions, and it proposes actions where standards are needed to advance industrial symbiosis with focus on priority resources and synergies demonstrating the highest symbiotic potential in Europe.


“We believe that the RISERS project will deliver solid data to guide key European standardization and policy making stakeholders about the standardization priorities and policy interventions necessary to a widespread adoption of industrial symbiosis. It will also ensure that the current and future industrial symbiosis standardization processes utilize research and innovation developments,” says Andrea Ratkošová, Project Coordinator, Enspire Science Ltd.


Key activities of the RISERS project include the identification of priority synergies between industries and sectors and of resources most relevant for industrial symbiosis, the strengthening of the links between research and innovation (R&I) and standardization, cooperation with policy makers, as well as engagement with standardization experts.


The project capitalises on the Workshop Agreement (CWA 17354) Industrial Symbiosis: Core Elements and Implementation Approaches’ published by the European Committee for Standardization (CEN). It provides a consensus on the core elements of industrial symbiosis to enable its identification and on good practice approaches to implementation across Europe and beyond.


The RISERS project is financed by the European Union and implemented by an international consortium of the following beneficiaries: Enspire Science Ltd., Comite Europeen De Normalisation (CEN) and its affiliated entity Deutsches Institut für Normung (DIN), EIT Raw Materials GMBH, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e. V., Universiteit Gent, International Synergies Ltd., Institute for Ecology of Industrial Areas, Institut Du Soudage Et Qualite (ISQ).


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