The City of Amsterdam

Circular Evaluation of Amsterdam

The background

The circular evaluation of Amsterdam shows that the city is at the forefront of circular economy – not only as a pioneer in the Netherlands, but also internationally! This report features five action perspectives that outline the role different parties in the market can take on. The report also indicates what the municipality can do in order to optimally support the market. The results of the evaluation and the perspectives are summarized in the report Circular Amsterdam: evaluation and action perspectives. We completed this assignment together with Circle Economy.


In 2015, the City of Amsterdam decided on its circular potential in the report Amsterdam Circulair: routekaart voor stad en regio. Over the last few years, 73 circular projects have come out of three programs and subsequently been implemented; these projects are evaluated in the report. Part of this evaluation includes the next steps that the new city council can take to maintain Amsterdam’s international leadership position.

The question

Evaluate our circular programs: this should cover both determining what results the projects achieved and preparing action perspectives for follow-up steps.

Current situation and future

Evaluating the 73 projects required intensive collaboration with the municipality and the companies and knowledge institutions from the Circular Innovation Program – that’s where the managers who ran the projects worked. The evaluation covered a range of projects, from circular land issues to supporting the Cirkelstad (Circular City) Network, and from the introduction of the Circular Challenge to a circular development strategy for Haven-Stad. The evaluation was carried out jointly with Circle Economy, which had published the roadmap in 2015.

The process

The assignment consisted of two parts: the evaluation of the results achieved, and the action perspectives for follow-up steps. The results of the project and lessons learned were collected for the evaluation, and the main features of the results were subsequently validated in a meeting with project leaders. Five action perspectives were then drawn up on the basis of the evaluation, which were further refined in a validation meeting with more than 100 stakeholders from market parties.

The results

The evaluation and action perspectives are summarized in the report Amsterdam Circular – Evaluation and Action perspectives (English), which was adopted by the Mayor and Aldermen on 6 March 2018. The evaluation shows that a circular economy is realistic and profitable – if external costs are structurally included in the pricing. The action perspectives provide five directions in which activities can be developed in the coming years:

  • Accelerate three value chains: construction, biomass & food and consumer goods
  • Expand the use of two municipal instruments: procurement and knowledge development & sharing
“The extraordinary and inspiring collaboration with Copper8 and Circle Economy has resulted in a unique product: for the first time, circular economy programs and projects have been evaluated. What’s more, we have action perspectives for the next period – something we can build on!” Eveline Jonkhoff Strategic Advisor Sustainability & Circular Economy

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