Industrial Symbiosis Emergence and Network Development through Reproduction

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22 Citationer (Scopus)


Industrial symbiosis, the exchange of excess resources between traditionally separate industries, has received increasing attention in recent years as a means of realizing a circular economy. Research has focused on determining how industrial symbioses come about and develop. Characteristics and dynamics of their emergence as well as their development processes have been identified. However, within this field, little attention has been paid to the effect of relations and interdependence between symbioses in the emergence process. The present paper addresses this gap. Its objective is to determine how existing industrial symbioses influence the emergence of new ones and contribute to industrial symbiosis network development. In doing so, a conceptual model is built and presented, explaining the connection and dependence between existing and emerging industrial symbioses. The model is inspired by analogies with biological processes of reproduction, which are translated into industrial principles. Embedded in the model are the principal reproduction modes: budding, broadcast spawning, and brooding. To validate and illustrate the applicability of the model, the paper presents empirical cases selected from the industrial symbiosis network in Aalborg, Denmark. Based on findings of the case study, the model of industrial symbiosis reproduction is found to be a useful tool for gaining a new perspective on industrial symbiosis networks’ development. The paper contributes to the understanding of industrial symbiosis emergence and network development processes by revealing the role of interconnectivity among existing and emerging industrial symbiotic linkages.
TidsskriftJournal of Cleaner Production
StatusUdgivet - 10 apr. 2020


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