In 2016 LWARB established a London Borough circular economy champions scheme. The scheme invites three officers per year to actively lead and promote circular economy thinking and practice within their organisation.

LWARB offers each champion support to delivery circular economy projects. As well as the opportunity to increase their understanding of the circular economy. Champions benefit from knowledge and skills building opportunities such as:

  • The opportunity to attend an Ellen Macarthur Foundation (EMF) Circular Economy 100 Acceleration Workshop
  • Or the opportunity to attend the EMF Annual Summit
  • And access to the EMF online circular economy training

The Acceleration workshop is a two-day event that takes place every six months in a major European city. It attracts senior representatives from some of the world’s biggest companies and cities, as well as academics, SMEs and policy makers. For example, the main funders of the EMF, the Global Partners, are Cisco, Google, H&M, Intesa Sanpaolo, Kingfisher, Phillips, Renault, and Unilever.

The Annual Summit is a one-day event attended by CE100 members and leading circular economy thinkers.

Accelerating circular economy at borough level

The aim of the scheme is to increase delivery of projects which help London to transition to a more circular economy.  This is achieved through:

  • Increasing boroughs’ understanding of the circular economy
  • Assisting with identification of opportunities for circular economy activities within boroughs
  • And facilitating in the creation of projects to deliver circular economy within boroughs

For example , LWARB assisted Merton’s champion to investigate the creation of a housing development in Merton which embeds circular economy. Merton is continuing to work with the housing developer to deliver the opportunities identified.

Requirement from champions and borough

  • Each champion is required to work with LWARB to deliver the activities identified within their application (see how to apply below). The champion will also actively promote circular economy thinking and practice within their own organisation and networks.
  • Each Borough will need to demonstrate commitment to delivering the activities identified within their application form. Alongside their activities, champions should allow adequate time to deliver activities and attend an EMF event. Champions will need to attend either an acceleration workshop (up to 3 days) or/and the Annual Summit (1 day).

What LWARB will provide

In addition to the opportunity to attend an EMF event, and access the online course LWARB will provide:

  • A grant of up to £5,000 for each borough to assist in delivering activities
  • Approximately 5 days support over 12 months to each borough.
  • Support from LWARB’s Senior Management team to engage Senior Managers within Boroughs to ensure buy-in with relevant projects.

Benefits to you and your organisation

Being a Circular Economy Champion offers some significant CPD opportunities in a rapidly growing area of policy. London has committed to a vision of becoming a Low Carbon Circular Economy within the new London Environment Strategy.

Becoming a circular economy champion will allow you to make contacts with some of the world’s biggest companies.  As well as, a host of smaller ones, with all the potential collaborative opportunities this provides. The circular economy champions scheme is open to anyone who works for a London borough council, in whatever capacity and at whatever level. Although we are looking to recruit people who can make a real impact.

There are also potential benefits for your borough. LWARB are very keen to explore with you and other boroughs how circular economy business models, for example sharing and leasing, can be developed at local level to deliver income or savings to local authorities. Circular economy thinking will have wider applications in the public realm, in purchasing policies, land use planning, housing and mobility.

How to apply

To apply to be part of the next cohort of champions, please email providing the following information:

  • Name, position and directorate of officer
  • Why is this scheme of interest to your borough? And how will it help deliver borough commitments?
  • Why is this scheme of interest to you?
  • What specific areas of activity would you like to undertake with LWARB as part of this scheme (please specify what you will require from LWARB, and what the borough will provide to deliver activity/activities).

Please note we will require all participating Boroughs to report to LWARB on how funding has been utilised and what it has achieved. Boroughs also grant us permission to publicise positive results.

If you have any questions please contact Andrea Crump at

Further information

London Circular Economy Route Map
CE100 Acceleration Workshops
Ellen Macarthur Foundation Annual Summit

Please note : Circular economy acceleration workshops are usually located in major European cities. LWARB will cover the costs of attendance at these workshops by arranging for travel and accommodation. Other expenses will be met by the participant.