Posted on 2nd June 2021
Ensuring a just transition is increasingly relevant and essential as the circular economy becomes more of a reality. The shift towards circularity in Europe means a change in industry and labour markets. Governments and other social partners must work to mitigate the uncertainty of this change by ensuring workers are protected and given the tools to reskill and upskill to work to their fullest potential in this new system. Circle Economy has highlighted steps that social partners can take to provide a just transition to a circular economy.
Sitra, the Finnish Innovation Fund, has released a working paper examining the effect of the circular economy on the jobs industry, using different sectors and four different countries to analyze the impact. Overall, the work suggests that almost every job and industry will be affected, emphasizing the distinct need for a just transition.
Additionally, Circle Economy has explored pursuing a just transition through initiatives aimed at closing the developing skills gap, specifically by discussing how vocational education and training can and should be used to do this as the circular economy develops across Europe.