The barriers of circular public procurement for ICTs

Detta är en Master-uppsats från Lunds universitet/Centrum för miljö- och klimatvetenskap (CEC)

Sammanfattning: The EU procured for roughly 202000 MEUR (14% of the EU GDP) during 2021 in the public sector. The majority of these contracts are traditional, linear business model purchases. The EU has been developing several strategies, guidelines, and policies for sustainable purchasing, with Circular Public Procurement for a Circular Economy (CE) being one of them, but the implementation rate is low. Electronic and Electrical Equipment (EEE) is one of the fastest growing and evolving technological areas with a low retention rate, meaning that the products are often discarded before the life cycle is up, shortening the product lifetime. This has led to a mass generation of e-waste which has several negative environmental aspects. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the potential barriers for implementing circular public procurement for ICTs (Information and communication technologies) with an objective to extend the product lifetime by the 9 Rs (refuse, rethink, reduce, reuse, repair, refurbish, remanufacture, repurpose, recycle and recover) of circularity. The results demonstrate the complexity of circular public procurement. Inconsistencies of definition of circularity is a highlighted issue which trickles down to the implementation of circular public procurement. The outcome is either not committing fully to circularity or simply abandoning the idea completely due to inconvenience as there is little or no support, incentives, and stricter regulations from the organisation and government, respectively. The issues for lifetime extension of ICTs are multi-layered with barriers such as lack of standards, incentives, and pricing of repairs and spare parts. Appropriate solutions should be implemented in a top-down approach starting with regulations and ending with circular activities at organisational and individual level.

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