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Circular Economy in Cities: Evolving the Model for a Sustainable Urban Future

Today, more than half of the world’s population lives in cities, a figure that is projected to increase 70 percent by 2050. This has considerable implications for urban infrastructure, waste management, natural resources and energy, and calls for an overhaul of how we envision and approach every element of urban living.

A product of the World Economic Forum’s Future of Urban Development and Services Initiative, the Circular Economy in Cities whitepaper traces the conceptual underpinnings of the circular economy and explains why cities are key to accelerating the transition away from the traditional ‘take-make-dispose’ model.

The paper draws on examples from cities around the world in areas including channeling used building materials to new building sites, water harvesting and reuse, reducing energy use, electronic waste, healthcare and procurement. It explains the opportunities in the circular economy for all stakeholders and the ways in which they can collaborate at city level.

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