Circular economy

The linear economic model, where we extract, manufacture, consume and then throw away, is increasingly being called into question. In response, the circular economy is emerging as a promising solution to today’s economic, social and environmental challenges.

The circular economy is an economic system that aims to maximise resource efficiency and reduce environmental impact at every stage of the product (goods and services) life cycle, while seeking to improve people’s well-being.

In Brussels, more and more projects are adopting this approach, aligning economic and environmental values for a more sustainable future. Companies and organisations can improve their environmental impact by adopting and combining various circular business models. For example, they can work to reduce consumption or extend the life of their products. They can also encourage the reuse of resources, either in the same production cycle (i.e. for the same purpose via reuse, remanufacturing and recycling) or in a different cycle (i.e. recycling for an alternative use after transformation via upcycling or downcycling). These strategies minimise the ecological footprint by promoting a more responsible and sustainable economy.

CurieuCity invites you to explore this theme by highlighting practices such as recycling, upcycling and reuse to reduce waste and optimise the use of resources, the sustainable management of which is essential in an urban context. CurieuCity offers a host of practical activities for adopting these practices on a daily basis, while encouraging reflection and dialogue on their impact on the environment and society.

Workshops such as those run by Carré&Co asbl, BC Materials, Odd Paper and Fablab’ke illustrate the potential of recycling and upcycling by transforming used or bio-based materials into useful and aesthetic objects. They encourage creativity and self-sufficiency among city dwellers by showing how to reuse discarded objects as precious resources.

Molenbeek à Vélo asbl’s bicycle repair workshop promotes sustainable mobility by teaching bicycle maintenance, encouraging an environmentally-friendly way of getting around and empowering participants. This underlines the importance of greener transport solutions in reducing the city’s carbon footprint.

At CurieuCity, art joins science and environmental awareness. For example, Xavier Gazon’s circuit bending workshop uses obsolete electronic devices to create musical instruments, demonstrating the importance of reuse in reducing electronic waste.

Precy Numbi uses recycled materials for his sculptures, superhero costumes and performances, encouraging us to reflect on our consumption habits and their impact on the environment. His works don’t just ask questions; they provoke critical reflection and inspire us to adopt more sustainable practices and make a community commitment to more conscious waste management.

CurieuCity is also exploring how technological innovations can become allies of sustainability principles. Upcycling projects such as Bel Albatros, which transforms plastic waste into new materials, demonstrate that innovation can align industrial practices with ecological objectives, offering new perspectives on the way we produce and consume.

Planned obsolescence is the focus of a talk by Jonathan Vigne of Repair Together asbl, who will be shedding light on industrial strategies that shorten the lifespan of products, inviting the public to reflect on their implications for consumption and the environment. At the same time, the Repair Café Mobile offers an interactive repair experience, where participants and volunteers work together to refurbish various objects. This workshop highlights the principles of the circular economy and the DIY movement, underlining the importance of reuse, repair and knowledge-sharing for sustainable urban living.

CurieuCity aims to inform and inspire by showcasing a range of initiatives that link circular economy theory with practical applications. Highlighting the importance of innovation, community and sustainability, the festival invites you to reflect on the ways in which our individual and collective actions can contribute to a more sustainable urban environment. Each activity offers a perspective on how changes in our daily habits can have an impact on our environment, encouraging constructive dialogue on the strategies available to us to co-construct a more responsible shared future.

Join us to discover, learn and act together towards a more circular city!