Digital Platform for Circular Economy in Cross-sectorial Sustainable Value Networks


DigiPrime has the mission to develop a new concept of Circular Economy digital platform overcoming current information asymmetry among value-chain stakeholders, in order to unlock new circular business models based on the data-enhanced recovery and re-use of functions and materials from high value-added post-use products with a cross-sectorial approach. DigiPrime will create and operate a federated model of digital platforms for cross-sector business in the Circular Economy.

Nodes of the federation will offer interoperable functions and data, that can be accessed by other nodes, combined with local data and services, that are not exposed outside; connectors and open interfaces enable easy integration of new services, provided by third parties, that are not made accessible outside. Specific attention will be devoted to create trustable data sharing mechanisms, preserving the confidentiality of business-critical data. Security and sovereignity of information are guaranteed by IDSA (Industrial Data Space Association)-based solutions for on-demand and controlled sharing of data among organisations, regulated by smart contracts and tracked by block-chain.

The services cover:

  1. The cross-sector value-Chains dimension (De- and remanufacturing oriented product information management, product co-creation, LCA-LCC for eco-design, demand-supply matching, sustainable value network and reverse logistics barriers identification and legislation support, etc.),
  2. The operational dimension (rediction of product conditions, de-and remanufacturing decision support system, demand and supply forecasting, circular production planning and control, material testing and certificationetc).

DigiPrime, will be thoroughly validated through 6 cross-sectorial pilots, further detailed in 20 use-cases covering 5 different European industrial sectors (automotive, renewable energy, electronics, textile, construction), and by additional pilots in new sectors, funded through an Open Call mechanism.

More information
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Start date: 01-01-2020
End date: 31-12-2023
Total budget - Public funding: 19 257 130,00 Euro - 15 963 173,00 Euro
Call topic: Digital Manufacturing Platforms for Connected Smart Factories_2 (DT-ICT-07-2019)
Twitter: @DigiPrime2
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Data spaces Data acquisition
Digital manufacturing platforms Data analytics

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Cybersecurity Circular Economy Pathway Hyperconnected Factories Pathway
Dedicated IT connection to some supply chain partners Dynamic IT connections to new supply chain partners

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Business model aspects of digital platform deployment

      DigiPrime is focused on the development of a circular economy digital platform that enables the creation of circular business models based on the data-enhanced recovery and reuse of functions and materials. A federated model of digital platforms for cross-sector business in the circular economy will be validated through cross-sectoral pilots and use cases in multiple industries including automotive, renewable energy, electronics, textile, and construction. The platform will help overcome current information asymmetry among value-chain stakeholders, thus contributing to unlock new circular business models based on the data-enhanced recovery and re-use of functions and materials from high value-added post-use products across manufacturing sectors. Through deploying a multi-node federation structure that is replicable on different, existing and prospective sectorial platform instances, DigiPrime supports the future systematic creation of cross-sectorial circular value-chains for the remanufacturing and re-use of high added-value components (i.e. batteries, composite and techno-polymer parts, textile components, and mechatronics / electronics).

      DigiPrime develops a multi-sided platform pursuing the goal that all relevant actors of circular economy scenarios - i.e. Products and materials manufacturers, de-manufacturers, remanufacturers, material recyclers, Consultancy, Research and Innovation centres and ICT providers are placed in a common space thereby facilitating contact between two or more sides that would otherwise be unlikely to interact. The platform facilitates transactions (data and services) among those actors by actually reducing transaction costs: that’s the real value DigiPrime business model relies on. In fact, the platform provides a convenient way of matching the different sides of an
      interaction (e.g. search or recommendation function), a virtual space to interact, a code of conduct, instruments that increase transparency and trust (i.e. comprehensive information, feedbacks, Material flow monitoring and aggregated system-oriented KPIs, Barriers Identification and legislation support, Circular Innovation Hubs integration, De-and remanufacturing oriented product information formalization, Reverse Logistics and value-chain integration, Demand and supply forecasting, Circular production planning and control, Material characterization and certification), methods of secure transaction, etc. to which both sides agree.

      Moreover, the concept and availability of federated agile business collaboration platforms for the circular economy is at the core of the DigiPrime vision. The proposed federated platform model will lead to disruption and business benefits in all the above areas of circular economy impact. Unlike platform monopolies, federated platforms offer diversity and demand-led development in a wide range of industry sectors, yet they all adopt a common architecture, standards and core technologies to facilitate interoperability and economies of scale.

      In their simplest shape, existing online platforms do not intervene in the transaction (still guaranteeing its correct execution), except by asking for a fee from one or multiple sides of the transaction in order to make profit. Those kind of platforms do not take control over the object of the transaction, nor on the transaction price. Considering preliminary investigations performed, the heterogeneous variety of requirements DigiPrime wants to address requires a more complex approach. For this reason, our platform needs to adopt a hybrid business model, choosing to act as a platform operator mediating between different market participants in one area of activity and as something like a distributor in another. Hybrid value creation is defined as the innovation strategy of generating additional value by innovatively combining products, data and services. To support such a vision, we currently foreseen a model where a permissioned network of actors can be created on top of the platform. To be in the network each actor will pay a minimal annual fee. Then each actor might earn incomes by selling products, data and services on the platform and/or need to pay additional fees once consuming/acquiring products, data and services.

      To further define the business model of the DigiPrime platform, the project has started to define key elements of the Platform Design ToolKit (, a tool inspired initially by the business model canvas, but extended with a set of tools especially thought for Platforms with several actors and with a distributed value generation. In the following only the Ecosystem mapping canvas and the final Business Canvas are reported for page limits; the overall canvas will be used as first reference for the business model generation and a key guideline for implementations, so to have always a clear vision shared among all the consortium partners.