Engaging with the general public on critical raw materials through the medium of electronics repair workshops.

Michael Johnson, Jessika Luth Richter, Jana Rückschloss, Janet Gunter, Jef Peeters, W. Sterkens, Milena Bigatto, A. Conci, Colin Fitzpatrick

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPaper in conference proceeding


The issue of Critical Raw Materials (CRMs) and potential interruptions to their supply andavailability due to concerns such as shortages, trade restrictions or geopolitical considerations are topicsthat are relatively unknown to the general public. Education and the dissemination of this informationamongst the general public has been promoted as a key factor in addressing this and enabling thetransition towards a circular economy. By and large, the general public are unaware of the existence ofCRMs, their importance in our world and how they contributes to this issue. Educating people aboutthese issues is one way to redress this shortcoming in modern society.Electronic repair events, repair cafés and repair workshops have been gaining momentum at nationaland international level as a means of addressing the perceived waste inherent in the current linearconsumption model. Repair events have existed for quite some time throughout Europe and around theworld. When considered in conjunction with the problem of CRM education, they provide an innovativeand novel platform for the dissemination of knowledge and the education of the general public on CRMissues.However, at present electronic repair events and workshops lack the capacity or knowledgebase toeducate the public about complex issues such as CRMs and their importance. Raw Engagement forElectronics Repair (REFER) is a KIC Raw Materials project that seeks to address this gap and useplatforms such as electronic repair workshops to educate the general public and the wider society aboutCRMs through engagement in such events.The project will host 60 Restarter Party events across 6 different E.U. member states, engaging with upto 6,000 members of the general public directly on matters of repair, re-use and CRM importance. A setof educational resources has been developed to support these engagements and related referrals throughsocial media, word-of-mouth and website interactions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProduct Lifetimes and the Environment (PLATE) 2019 Conference Proceedings
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-7983-3125-9
Publication statusPublished - 2021
EventPlate 2019 Conference - Berlin, Germany
Duration: 2019 Sept 182019 Sept 20


ConferencePlate 2019 Conference
Internet address

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Business Administration
  • Environmental Management


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