Industrial Symbiosis: Networking for Improved Environmental Performance -Teresa Domenech (UCL, Political Science)
Abstract: Industrial ecology has emerged as a body of knowledge that focuses on the possibilities of minimising the materials and energy requirement of the industrial sector, by transforming waste streams into valuable inputs, through the building of complex material and energy flow systems. Within this field, Industrial symbiosis (IS) explores the inter-company dimension in moving towards more closed-loop industrial systems, by looking at networks of industrial companies exchanging waste flows and sharing resources. Equally important for the practical implementation of IS initiatives as the study of the patterns material and energy flows within the industrial system, is the understanding of the organisational, institutional and social aspects that govern those material flows and the performance of the networks. Even given the potential economic and environmental benefits, the process of emergence and development of these networks seems far from straightforward. The effective operation of such networks relies heavily on aspects such as trust and general reciprocity. In this presentation I will explore the networking dynamics of IS networks and their contribution to innovation and to the triple bottom line of organisations. Aspects regarding the structure, morphology and patterns of coordination of these networks will be briefly reviewed.
Bio: Teresa Domenech has a PhD on Industrial Symbiosis Networks awarded by the University College London (UCL). She is also research assistant at the Bartlett School of Graduate Studies (UCL) and coordinates the MSc module on Industrial Symbiosis. Her research interests cover the areas of industrial symbiosis, industrial ecology, innovation and environmental networks and, more widely, sustainability issues. She has taken part in a European funded project to research the applicability of industrial ecology and networking principles to the design of industrial estates and planning policies. She has also worked as environmental consultant providing assistance to industrial companie