Transitioning to a circular bioeconomy: Key drivers and the new cluster technologies to accelerate process development in biotechnology sectors


*Corresponding author
1. Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Hamar, Norway; Norse Biotech AS, Elverum, Norway
2. Norse Biotech AS, Elverum, Norway


There is growing interest from governmental organizations and firms in the biotechnology sector in transitioning to a circular bioeconomy to meet their climate and economic goals. We use data from a recent presentation given at the CPAC Rome Workshop 2023 (30, 31) to present five key factors driving the transition away from carbon-based materials to biobased ones and the technologies that are being implemented to achieve this. We address some of the new challenges that have arisen such as long wait times at the process development and commercialization stages. Finally, we offer solutions through the implementation of organizational clusters to overcome the challenge of resource efficiency through geographical proximity, and knowledge transfer.

This paper presents some of the arguments from a presentation given at the recent CPAC Rome Workshop 2023 (30) at the University of Washington Rome Center. The presentation “To Facilitate a Rapid Transition to a Circular bioeconomy will Require the Development of New Tools to Speed Process Development” focused on some of the key drivers for a circular bioeconomy, which included a description of the new technologies that will be required to enable a smooth and rapid transition. The presentation started with a review of the problems that led to the development of the circular economy concept that was an overarching topic at this year’s workshop titled, “Utilization of New Processing Concepts to Support the Demand for Sustainable Materials in a Circular Economy, often enabled by Exploring New Reaction Routes for Continuous Flow Processing Aided by Real-Time Monitoring Technology” (1). Designed to be “restorative and generative” the circular economy approach speaks to an economic system where the resources in the economy are maintained for as long as possible and the generation of waste is minimized (2) – an approach that demands ...