Methods and Demonstrations

The Method and Demos Flagship will support the two domains – textiles and building materials - in a multifaceted manner.

The first manner in which we will support the two domains is through supporting new modes of interaction to stimulate a participatory process between the different stakeholders who are active and engaging in the research programme. These will be applied in cases that are promising for making a change within the two domains that serve as our contextual anchors. This means supporting boundary crossing between different disciplines (interdisciplinarity) and between science and society (transdisciplinarity). The first key objective is to catalyse and motivate system thinking, learning and an understanding of what is meant by the transition process. A reflective and adaptive learning cycle aims to facilitate, understand and monitor the transition process both within the thinking of participants and the outcomes of their resulting activities. To this end new methods for transdisciplinary collaboration, with a focus on system change will be developed and existing methods will be tailored to the context for application in the cases.
The second manner in which the Method and Demos Flagship are supporting the domains is through offering technical knowledge. The key objective of this is to identify ground breaking, cutting-edge innovations that fit in one of the three technological transition pathways (biobased, recycling, CO2 capture and utilization technologies – link to pathway page). Once identified, the innovations are further explored and undergo first tests in laboratory settings. The investment theme aspires to cover all identified transition pathways and not to shy away from underexplored pathways that might be riskier due to their early development (TRL) stage.
The third manner in which the Method and Demos Flagship are supporting the domains is through integrated sustainability assessments. The key objective of which is to develop and implement integrated approaches to assess the potential challenges and opportunities of selected cases within the domains (link to). These integrated approaches encompass all dimensions of sustainability, i.e.,  social-ecological, economic, technical, as well as governance. Ultimately, the flagship will support the analysis of trade-offs (compromises) between those dimensions and look for synergies (win-win) opportunities. To do so, the existing concepts, such as socio-ecological systems and ecosystem services, and existing methods related to life cycle thinking and mass flow analysis will be considered. It will also identify gaps in existing approaches and develop new tools. 
The key tasks of the Methods and Demos team are:

  • To stimulate and facilitate transdisciplinary collaborations and systems thinking
  • To demonstrate cutting-edge innovations in fundamental laboratory research
  • To Investigate the dimensions of sustainability for the case studies chosen
  • Assess progress in the transition process instigated by the programme in terms of learning and institutional changes in and around the selected cases