TAGES and Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality (IMM), as Turkish partners of the CircularPSP Project (Public Service Platforms for Circular, Innovative and Resilient Municipalities through PCP) funded by the EC Horizon Europe Programme, conducted three focus group studies in Istanbul with stakeholders in April and May to determine the needs and requirements in the field of circular economy in order to accelerate the digital transition towards a circular economy.
CircularPSP brings together 7 procurers from 7 countries, representing 45 million citizens, to invest €5.64 million in R&D to address the common challenge of accelerating the digital transition to a Circular Economy (CE). (The funding will be offered through a multi-stage pre-commercial procurement (PCP) process. All interested parties are invited to attend Open Market Consultation (OMC) events to learn more about the challenge and the process. For more details on the PCP procedure, see PCP Process).
The Buyers Group represents highly attractive national markets (Germany, Finland, Turkey, Sweden, Ireland, Portugal, Slovenia), supported by a Preferred Partner in the UK, including capitals with global influence (Berlin, Helsinki, London, Istanbul). The Consortium represents European CE-transition and PCP leaders in science and practice.
Suppliers are expected to deliver a new green digital public service and data platform that enables the entire municipal operation (city) and the local economy (market) to select, open and consume existing and new data. The solution is to support business processes and workflows to plan, procure and implement innovative CE solutions faster and at higher scale across Europe – in other words, a scalable as-a-service public service platform for the city organisation (Circular City Platform: CCP) and the local market economy (Circular Market Platform: CMP).
To enable the transition, vendors will respond to the unmet need for ICT innovation in the cross-cutting combination of three strategic digital technologies:
1) Scalable platforms for city and SME users
2) CE data analytics using EU taxonomy and open-linked data
3) Natural Language Processing (NLP) to overcome language barriers across the EU and beyond.
In order to identify the needs and requirements for the Public Service Platform to be developed, focus group studies were conducted with three different groups, namely local government users, intermediaries and SMEs & businesses.
The focus group studies in Istanbul were organised by IMM and TAGES. All sessions were very productive and intense.
The first focus group with local administrations users was held on 28 April 2023 at IMM Kasımpaşa Additional Service Building. The participants were selected from the relevant branches of IMM and its subsidiaries. In this study, Yıldız Münevver Koç, Sustainability Chief of the Energy Management and Lighting of Parks, Gardens and Green Areas Directorate of IMM, welcomed the participants and introduced the project and its objectives. Aslıhan Kağnıcı, the project consultant of TAGES, then moderated the focus group. From the focus group, we observed that the participants are aware of the issues and are willing to move towards a more circular economy. During the study, the participants formed groups and raised the importance of integration, process tracking for applications and data security in the context of digital transition to a circular economy.
The second focus group study was with the intermediaries, which was organised on 11 May 2023 in Zemin Istanbul. The representatives of universities, associations, NGOs, platforms and specialists whose working areas are related to circular economy, sustainability and waste management were invited to participate. Prof. Dr. Yasin Çağatay Seçkin, Head of Parks, Gardens and Green Areas Department, welcomed the group and pointed out the importance of the project and IMM’s vision on circular economy.
Leyla Arsan, CEO of TAGES, also gave a welcome speech and emphasized the importance of the insights and feedback of the invited circular economy experts for the project. Ülkü Gül Güneş, National& International Programmes Coordinator of Parks, Gardens and Green Areas Department of IMM introduced the project and the aim of the focus group study and Aslıhan Kağnıcı moderated the questions.
As everyone was an expert on the subject, this session was very intense. Some of the suggestions for the platform from this focus group were to include training modules for citizens, to create a common language, to include good practices and benchmarks, and to include many types of medium within.
Focus Group study with Intermediaries, May 11, 2023, Zemin Istanbul
The last focus group with SMEs and businesses was held on 12 May 2023 in Zemin Istanbul. Representing the stakeholders who are more likely to become suppliers for the project were invited to participate. The aim was to understand the level of knowledge and awareness about circular economy within the supplier group.
Dr. Ahmet Cemil Tepe, Deputy Manager of Green Areas and Facilities Construction Branch Office of IMM and Leyla Arsan welcomed the group and Ülkü Gül Güneş introduced the project and shared information about the procurement processes where the local companies will be invited.
With the moderation of Aslıhan Kağnıcı, a result of this focus group study was that the legal framework was perceived as the most challenging to strengthen the circular economy and data collection and analytic tools were found to be the most useful feature for a technological solution to promote the circular economy.
Focus Group study with Local Businesses, May 12, 2023, Zemin Istanbul
OMC event in Istanbul will be organized online on June 7, 2023. Stay tuned to participate and learn the details!
Main website: circularpsp.eu
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