Planting the seeds of a more sustainable future in Prato: The INNOMED-UP Circular Economy Course in Prato, Training Activities for SMEs


The city of Prato has held ten online training workshops between the end of June and the beginning of September – the final one took place on the 6th September 2021. The WS provided a full introductory course to the Circular Economy, its concepts, its trends, its issues, and the way ahead, at the urban and wider scales. A total of 40 training hours were delivered to around 25-15 stakeholders each time.

The course enjoyed an enthusiastic receptivity by the participants, as they were able to achieve the following objectives:

•To be able to understand Circular economy principles

•To know and understand innovative new business models and digital revolution

•To be able to seek the circular advantage developing new business models

•To be able to understand and practice circular economy processes

•To be able to understand how to drive the circular advantage

•To be able to understand and practice design thinking principles

•To be able to deal with main challenges in New- Product Development

•To be able to understand principles and strategies for a durable and circular design

On the other hand, the course evidenced that for developing the Circular Economy within a city, several challenges must be faced, e.g., pertaining to:

•Understanding framework and instruments involved in the transition

•Understanding circular economy business models

•Understanding the roots of the circular economy

•Knowing how to gain the circular advantage

•Knowing how circular supply-chain management works

•Driving the technology and digital edge in circular advantage

•How to develop main circular capabilities for driving value

•Defining new ideas for gaining the circular advantage

We conclude that the varied composition of the learning group favored a creative exchange of knowledge and ideas among the course participants, which were able to conceive novel opportunities to apply the CE to urban waste disposal issues. Their project ideas will be further developed to participate in the call for projects that will be launched shortly, and possibly funded by vouchers- innovative financial tools that will be the object of an ad-hoc communication campaign through the communication channels of the city of Prato.