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Call for expression of interest for SME support organisations

Boosting the circular economy amongst SMEs in Europe

The European Commission invites organisations who engage with and support SMEs (e.g. sector associations, industry associations, SME umbrella organisations or networks, chambers of commerce) in the European Union to put themselves forward if they are interested in receiving training from: KPMG, Ecofys, CSR Netherlands and CSR Netherlands regarding resource efficiency, eco-innovation and circular economy.

The trainings will be focused on helping you to establish a programme to deliver support on the topic of circular economy to your members. The content of the trainings can be tailored towards your specific needs/the needs of your organisation. Topics which you can expect to be addressed in the training are: EU financial instruments to finance circular solutions (e.g. Horizon 2020, Life), EU non-financial instruments to help promote circular solutions (e.g. EU Ecolabel, EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS), EU Environmental Technology Verification scheme (ETV), green public procurement (GPP), indicators for construction sector) and circular business models (e.g. leasing).

The training sessions are expected to take place during Q1 of 2018.

The offer:

  • Capacity building in the form of digital training materials
  • Two-days training session on how to extend services to SMEs regarding resource efficiency, eco-innovation and circular economy

Your benefits:

  • State-of-the-art and tailored content in the trainings
  • On-site training
  • Improved service provision to your SMEs
  • Your SMEs can benefit from circular economy solutions, including cost reductions, new/increased revenue streams and improved environmental performance

What is expected from you if you participate:

  • Time investment to participate in different training modules
  • Implementation plans to bring the gained knowledge to SMEs

 

Application form:

Application form for SME support organisations which are interested in receiving training

Closing date for submission: 18th of September 2017. The European Commission will then select the most suitable applicants. The training materials will be made publically available.

In terms of characteristics of the SME support organisation, the selection process will be based on the following criteria. The SME support organisation:

  • is highly motivated;
  • is at an early stage of providing services on resource efficiency, circular economy, and eco-innovation;
  • preferably operates in one of the focus sectors of the EU Action Plan on Circular Economy;
  • has sufficient organisational capacity;
  • and has a large network.

If you have any further question please write to ENV-PILOT-PROJECT@ec.europa.eu

The project also offers support to circular solution providers and policy advice to regional authorities:

Call for expression of interest for circular solution providers

Call for expression of interest for regional authorities

 

Background:

The European Commission has adopted an ambitious new Circular Economy Package to help European businesses and consumers to make the transition to a stronger and more circular economy where resources are used in a more sustainable way. With this plan to make Europe’s economy cleaner and more competitive, the Commission is delivering ambitious measures to cut resource use, reduce waste and boost sustainable production and consumption.

Since adopting the Circular Economy Package the Commission has observed an increased uptake by corporations to adopt resource efficiency, eco-innovation and/or circular economy strategies and practices.

The Commission observes that SMEs are experiencing more difficulties in adopting such strategies and practices, due to:

  • their more limited organisational, technological and financial capacity;
  • and less access to (pre-) financing for circular solutions.

With this project the Commission aims to bring assets (e.g. knowledge, networks and tools) via the right support infrastructure, organisations and associations to SMEs so that these enterprises can start to benefit from the advantages of the circular economy, including cost reductions, new/increased revenue streams and improved environmental performance.

 

Frequently asked questions

What will the trainings look like?

The training would consist of a two day face-to-face training session. In addition, we will share digital/online materials with participants to prepare for this training. After completion of all the trainings the total set of materials will be made available online in major EU languages.

As support for the face-to-face training sessions, we will develop digital training materials for each of the face-to-face training modules. The digital training materials:

  • stimulate active participation and learning by the participants as the se materials will enable them to prepare for the face-to-face sessions;
  • enable the participants to test their knowledge before and after the face-to-face training sessions;
  • serve as a reference guide in which all relevant information covered during the face-to-face training sessions is stored;
  • provide suggestions for further reading;
  • serve as a basis for the creation of a set of web-based training materials that will be disseminated for further use among SMEs and SMEs support organizations.

The web-based training materials will be further developed during the implementation of the face-to- face training sessions. At the end of the two year program we will provide the Centre with web-based trainings in six major European languages (which will be determined in consultation with the Centre).

What will the trainings look like?

The offer is a two day face-to-face training session. In addition, we will share digital/online materials with participants to prepare for this training.  After completion of all the trainings the total set of materials will be made available online in major EU languages. We also expect there to be some follow up time investment needed.

What are the costs for the training?

There will be no costs for the participating SME support organizations. Travel and hotel costs will be paid/reimbursed by the Commission to a maximum as determined by the Commission based on local price levels. However time related expenditure  are not reimbursed.

Where will the training take place?

The training for the SME support organizations will be organized at a location near to the offices of the SME support organization If we cannot organize the training at a location near to your offices we will reimburse travel- and/or hotel costs to a maximum determined by the Commission based on local price levels.

In what language will the training be given?

The physical trainings will be offered in English with a potential local language expert when necessary.

Which subjects will be covered by the training?

You may expect an in-depth training curriculum covering circular business model/business case development, business benefits,  circular design, procurement/ value chain,  sector deep dives, financial / non-financial instruments , European funding, developing action plans for stimulating SME’s and implementation support.

When you apply through the European Commission webpage, you will have the opportunity to indicate your specific demands.

Can SME support organizations from non-EU member states also apply for this project?

Unfortunately SME support organizations from non-EU member states are not eligible for this project. However we advise you to follow the developments of the project by visiting the website of the commission as online training material will become available.