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An examination of the activity, outcomes and cost effectiveness of resource efficiency cluster activity through the use of five case studies, secondary research and stakeholder/expert interviews.

This case study:
  • Understands how Local Enterprise Partnerships currently support Resource Efficiency
  • Identifies and Compare Different Types of Cluster
  • Examines Pre-Existing Evidence

WRAP has identified two major barriers to SME adoption of resource efficiency – capability and capacity. Capability barriers exist where SMEs do not have the knowledge, understanding and skills to adopt resource efficiency measures. Capacity barriers occur where SMEs do not have the time and resources to implement resource efficiency actions.

There can also be informational market failures where businesses are unaware of the possible savings they could make through resource efficiency measures. Specifically in relation to opportunities for industrial symbiosis, businesses are unlikely to be aware of the resources and needs of businesses in other sectors and thus the potential for industrial symbiosis matches. In addition, market pricing of materials may not take into account their environmental impact and thus may limit incentives to resource efficiency. 

The following five case studies were used and their activities and outcomes detailed in the report:

1. BESST (the Business Environmental Support Scheme for Telford): a private sector environmental network operating a membership fee located in Telford.

2. IS NET: an industrial symbiosis, network focused, ERDF funded project for the West Midlands, delivered by a consultancy, International Synergies.

3. EREIKS (Embedding Resource Efficiency in Key Sectors): primarily a one to one resource efficiency business support programme delivered through clusters, funded by Defra.

4. Advance London: an ERDF project to help SMEs to either scale up a circular economy business model or transition from a linear business model to a circular business model.

5. SREM (Shared Resource Efficiency Manager): a Defra funded project using a shared resource efficiency manager in SME manufacturing businesses to move them to a continual model of resource efficiency improvement.

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  • WRAP-Clusters-research-report .pdf

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