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MSc Thesis Utrecht University - Value in the wardrobe: A case study of the transition towards a circular economy clothing industry in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area

By Onno Slikker

The clothing industry accounts for 5% of the global CO2 emissions as it is grounded in the linear economy. The circular economy is proposed as a sustainable alternative. However, regions struggle to find strategies to implement the circular economy. The aim of this research is therefore to find out which agency strategies support a transition towards a circular clothing industry. By employing a mixed method research approach using interviews and desk research, the case of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area is studied.

Results show that industrial change led to a constraining condition for circular clothing production, but enabling for circular clothing design. Policy instruments enabled the transition, while fragmentation constrained it. Also quadruple helix interactions engaged regional actors in the transition. Taking these regional conditions into account, agency strategies which are based on regional capabilities, systemic impact and complement current strategies support the transition. This includes intermediaries setting up multistakeholder partnerships, educating public officials by a NGO or providing digital solutions by innovative firms.

Source: Slikker, O. 2021. Value in the wardrobe: A case study of the transition towards a circular economy clothing industry in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. Master thesis Human Geography, Economic Geography: Regional Development & Policy Track, Utrecht University

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