Objective 2.2

Promoting the transition to a circular and resource efficient economy

The European Union aims at becoming the first climate-neutral continent by 2050. To reach the targets, the efforts must be increased in the next years. The ambition and the potential of the Alpine region are high.

What is it about?

The Alpine region marks a transnational biodiversity hotspot, even though it is situated within one of the most densely inhabited and connected areas in Europe.

Circular economy refers to sustainable systems that treat resources as particularly valuable. The principles of avoiding “waste” and trying to keep resources in use for as long as possible are relevant for the entire production-cycle. Circular economy approaches appear to be very suitable for supporting the needs of sustainable economic development, climate-protection, and social adaptation in the Alpine region.

The Alpine region is characterized by a high potential for natural resources. Circular-economy-approaches will show great impact and foster the reduction of the overall material use as well as the implementation of innovative solutions and new technologies. The Interreg Alpine Space programme 2021-2027 will take a step further and link the circular economy approach with bio-economy and other green economy-concepts. Besides, it will support the development of closed material cycles in key sectors such as Alpine tourism, mobility, energy, construction and housing and related sectors. To support this economic transformation, consumers and their behaviours have to be addressed. Finally, circular economy approaches strengthen the economic development in rural as well as in urban regions.

Indicative types of actions

The programme is looking to support the following indicative types of action:


Circular/green/bio-economy solutions to facilitate the development and implementation of circular and green economy-approaches among different actors with a focus on the Alpine key resources and key sectors abovementioned;


Good practices exchange and pilot activities supporting inter-regional circular economy approaches that promote bio-economy, the use of indigenous biological and regional products and waste reduction specifically in the abovementioned key sectors;


“Transnational value chain” solutions based on regional assets and resources, competences and needs referring to the EU-key-concept of “strategic value chains”, supporting industrial and innovation stakeholders in the Alpine region;


Skills and competences of stakeholders at all policy levels and in the relevant business sectors to pave the way towards the implementation of circular, green economy as well as bio-economy approaches including the set-up of indicators and monitoring systems;


Solutions and pilot activities dealing with communication, capacity building, political framing approaches and awareness raising for stakeholders at different policy and implementation levels as well as citizens/consumers to support a better understanding of the transformation processes needed;


Solutions and pilot activities supporting the development of clusters specialised in circular and green economy and bio-economy that foster research, innovation, implementation and cooperation particularly in the abovementioned key sectors.

Objective overview

Have a look at other priorities and objectives.

Priority 1

Climate resilient and green Alpine region

Promoting climate change adaptation and disaster risk prevention, and resilience


Enhancing protection and preservation of nature, biodiversity and green infrastructure

Priority 2

Carbon neutral and resource sensitive Alpine region

Promoting energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions


Promoting the transition to a circular and resource efficient economy

Priority 3

Innovation and digitalisation supporting a green Alpine region

Developing and enhancing research and innovation capacities and the uptake of advanced technologies


Reaping the benefits of digitalisation for citizens, companies, research organisations and public authorities

Priority 4

Cooperatively managed and developed Alpine region

Enhance institutional capacity of public authorities and stakeholders to implement macro-regional strategies and sea-basin strategies, as well as other territorial strategies.

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