Monitoring circularity in the Metropolitan Region of Amsterdam

A measurement framework to track circular progress

Amsterdam has been engaged in the circular economy for several years and wanted to be able to systematically monitor the progress towards circular economy and assess the effect of different policy instruments.

  • Client: Amsterdam CTO, Amsterdam Economic Board
  • Date: May 2018
The challenge

Metabolic researched current frameworks and relevant conceptual work and concluded that no framework existed to measure circularity at a city-level and only few have been made at national level.

The challenge
Our approach

By translating key concepts from Material Flow Accounting to the city-level and using a range of indicators, Metabolic created a holistic set of indicators for monitoring circularity. Additionally, Metabolic performed an analysis of the data and infrastructure needed and defined a roadmap for Amsterdam to implement the monitoring framework.

Our approach
The outcome

Metabolic delivered a number of recommendations, including the need for more data on building materials in the city for urban mining, and a combination of a top-down and bottom-up data collection approach. Following on from this, Metabolic and the MRA are continuing to implement circular solutions, such as monitoring of e-waste.

The outcome
Want to learn more?

“Imagine there was nothing like GDP in the world, and people asked: ‘how is the economy of the Netherlands doing?’ you wouldn’t have a clue how to answer. It is the same with the circular economy. If we can’t comprehensively and systematically measure where we are, or where we want to be, we have no idea how we are doing.”

Team Lead Circular Policy & Implementation


For more information about this project, please get in touch.