REsource Management in Peri-urban Areas: Going Beyond Urban Metabolism

Contact: Alex Wandl

A shift towards a more circular economy is crucial in order to achieve more sustainable and inclusive growth. The core objective of REPAiR is to provide local and regional authorities with an innovative transdisciplinary open source geodesign decision support environment (GDSE) developed and implemented in living labs in six metropolitan areas. The GDSE allows creating integrated, place-based eco-innovative spatial development strategies aiming at a quantitative reduction of waste flows in the strategic interface of peri-urban areas. These strategies will promote the use of waste as a resource, thus support the on-going initiatives of the European Commission towards establishing a strong circular economy. The identification of such eco-innovative strategies will be based as much as possible on the integration of life cycle thinking and geodesign in order to operationalise urban metabolism (UM). Our approach differs from previous UM as we introduce a reversed material flow accounting (MFA) in order to collect data accurate and detailed enough to allow for the design of a variety of solutions to place-based challenges. The developed impact and decision models allow quantification and validation of alternative solution paths and therefore promote sustainable urban development built upon near-field synergies between the built and natural environments. This will be achieved by quantifying and tracking essential resource flows, mapping and quantification of negative and positive effects of present and future resource flows, and the determination of a set of indicators to inform decision makers concerning the optimization of (re-)use of resources. The GDSE will be made available on an open source platform. With a budget of 5.0 million euro, REPAiR funds a consortium rich in experience in waste and resource management, spatial decision support, territorial governance, spatial planning and urban design, and has deep knowledge of the six case study areas.


To develop, test and implement a geodesing decision support environment (GDSE) for the development of integrative spatial development strategies that understand waste and related treatment processes as a resource.

AmbitionsREPAiR 3

  • Extending the concept of Urban Metabolism (UM) by exploring the roles of governance settings and territorial and socio-cultural characteristics;
  • Extending the concept of UM by strengthening the relation between design, not only of products but also space, and resource management;
  • Shedding new light on participatory and science-based decision-making by combining local and economy-wide sustainability appraisal




Two Living Labs

NaplesREPAiR 1
Recycling a Wasted Landscape which applies to waste flows as well as to open spaces and built entities, like buildings and infrastructure.



Amsterdam – Haarlemmermeer
From ‘The Valley: National
circular lighthouse projectREPAiR 2  at Schiphol Trade Park’ to a circular regional development
In cooperation with MBE, AE&T and international partners