Recurring patterns and blueprints of industrial symbioses as structural units for an it tool

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


  • Anna Rohde-Lütje
  • Volker Wohlgemuth

Industrial Symbiosis (IS) deals with the set-up of advanced circular/cascading systems, in which the energy and material flows are prolonged for multiple material and energetic (re-)utilization within industrial systems. To facilitate the technology-enabling environment of IS systems, this work deals with the identification of recurring patterns in IS systems of specific IS case studies and deduction of elementary blueprints and structural units, setting an initial cornerstone to pool and synthesize existing IS knowledge and to deploy this knowledge base in an Information Technology (IT)-supported IS tool, which would remarkably advance the scope of action and development of IS systems. An explorative cross-case analysis was conducted by investigating 80 IS case studies in depth in order to illuminate recurring (key) patterns in IS systems by generalizing and abstracting IS main structures, compositions, resource exchange activities and measures. It has been shown that similar IS sectoral partnerships and resource exchanges have recurrently formed in different regions and hence, generalizable patterns can be deduced. This study identified common IS compositions, sector clusters and key/core/anchor entities and synthesized a content basis for a database of an IS resource exchange catalog based on existing/available IS information, which can be used in an IT-supported IS tool. It contains information of specific IS resource exchanges, broken down by industrial sectors, differentiating providing and receiving sectors and which respective exchanged waste flows were processed into which secondary material/product. Once this fundamental information/data base is incorporated and applied in an IT-supported IS tool, it enables the facilitated recommendation of potential IS partners and IS actions to optimize existing IS cases or to initiate IS development. Especially, first IS germ cells of (key) entities can be derived and connected to each other considering individual circumstances and (geographical) business environments.

ZeitschriftSustainability (Switzerland)
Anzahl der Seiten21
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 08.10.2020