Author: david

eReuse: circular thinking and interactions around reuse of computing devices (EN | ES)

English | Spanish

by David Franquesa, Leandro Navarro, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya,

Reuse of electronic devices such as desktops, laptops or mobile phones is applied to devices that have already been manufactured and are no longer in use (disposal) and will be recycled unless they are not repaired, refurbished and/or redistributed to other users. The reuse process ends when after a few years the device or a component returns to the disposal state, which means its use value then, or potential if improvements were made, does not allow its reuse again. Thus ending in recycling, a process that transforms computational use value into raw material use value [1].

We say that a device or component is reusable if it has any use value for someone. We use the word “potential” because when a device is not currently in use (going to disposal) it will only be reused if a preparation for reuse process is applied and the same user or another user finally reuses it. We refer by “use value” to the capacity of a device to satisfy a need, in our case of computing (storing, computing, viewing data, etc.), and not to the “exchange value” of a device on the market. The value of exchange depends on factors such as the value of its resources used during its life cycle, the work added to make raw materials computing usable, or supply and demand, and other factors not currently considered, such as the social impact on the extraction of materials, labor aspects or the pollution generated. We say that the use value of a device is universal and does not depend on a specific geographical location. It does not depend on the value given by the current user that wants to dispose a given device, which is its subjective perception of value, the he may consider it too low while there may be someone else not too far away willing to recondition and use it.

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Educational, social, cooperative and circular consumption of computer equipment

What is How does a computer reuse circuit work? How can you autonomously replicate a circuit in your city? How can you participate in an existing one and provide circularity services in the field of electronics?

Next Wednesday May 31 at 10:00 am we present two circuits. The Circuit of the Barcelona City Council derives its used equipment for social initiatives, and the Circuit of Abacus to public schools. The refurbishers and retailers are entites of the social economy, such as Solidança, Alencop, Andròmines, Engrunes, Donalo, Abacus and Pangea. In the Abacus circuit the computers come from citizens. In those cases where it is not viable to restore a computer, it is derived to organizations doing voluntary donation and service-learning programs, where students learn to repair equipment while serving society and the environment.

More info: Link


¿Qué es el ¿Cómo funciona un circuito de reutilización de equipos informáticos? ¿Cómo puedes replicar de manera autónoma un circuito en tu ciudad? Cómo puedes participar en uno existente y proveer servicios de circularidad en el ámbito de la electrónica?

El próximo miércoles 31 de Mayo a las 10 h presentamos dos circuitos. El Circuito del Ayuntamiento de Barcelona deriva sus equipos usados a iniciativas sociales, y el Circuito de Abacus a escuelas públicas. En los dos circuitos participan entidades de restauración y distribución de la economía social, como Solidança, Alencop, Andròmines, Engrunes, Donalo, Abacus y Pangea. En el circuito Abacus los equipos proceden de ciudadanos. En aquellos casos en que no es viable restaurar un equipo éste se deriva a entitades de donación voluntaria y programas de aprenendizaje-servicio, en donde estudiantes aprenden a reparar equipos al tiempo que hacen un servicio a la sociedad y al medio ambiente.

Fecha: Miércoles, 31 de Mayo del 2017
Hora: 10:00 – 11:00
Lugar: Montjuïc, Pavelló 1 – Sala Economia Social
Más información: Link to conference
Entrada gratuita para miembros de, solicita tu entrada.

Participació del Circuit Pangea al Mobile Social Congress

Dia:    28 de Febrer 2017
Hora: 17:30 a 18:30
Lloc:  Pati Manning. C/Montealegre,7, Barcelona.
Titol:  Com canalitzar els teus dispositius digitals cap a l’economia social i solidària per la reutilització i reciclatge final
Event: Mobile Social Congress (Enllaç)


  • Presentació d’entitats de l’economia social i solidària que participen d’un circuit de reutilització.
  • Demostració d’una APP per a mostrar als donants d’equipament informàtic la traçabilitat de la reutilització i la recollida a punts verds.


Molts dispositius digitals d’empresa i administració pública es donen de baixa quan es considera que estan amortitzats, i, tot i que molts siguin aptes per a la reutilització, s’acostumen a desballestar (reciclar). La reutilització és una forma eficaç de generar economia circular, enfortir la creació d’ocupació local, prevenir la generació de residus, i, quan és solidària, permet reduir la bretxa digital i enfortir a entitats i projectes d’interès social.

Continue reading outcomes aligned to EU action plan for the circular economy

A team of volunteers, activists, and researchers at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya has created

EU project have develop the mature, open-source, decentralised, local, scalable tools and services to aligned to EU action plan for the circular economy, specifically points 6, 8, 9, 10, 13a, 17, 18, 20, 21. outcomes are aligned to EU action plan for the circular economy to effectively ‘close the loop’ and achieve a transition to a Circular Economy where the value of products, materials and resources is maintained in the economy for as long as possible, and the generation of waste minimised. tools and services are appropriate measures to improve the durability, reparability, reusability, upgradability and ensure traceability for recyclability of products. Reusers have support tools to report further reuses and to finally recycle them at authorised points. enable markets for circular products and services and generates data that enables a transition towards a fully circular economy by building the knowledge base for environmental action and sustainability. Researchers, citizens, companies, and governments can access to reliable, timely and understandable information regarding the environmental characteristics of products and services can help make informed choices based on verifiable and transparent information.

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Now there are open tools and standards that can assist in the preparation for reuse process (hardware rating and testing, deletion of data, inventory, labeling, and packaging), certification of the reusability potential of digital devices, and traceability until recycling. These tools could improve efficiency, as only products with a high potential for reuse may be donated, and the remaining will be recycled. In our experience, productivity with network boot can reach at least 20 devices per operator and hour. Donors and receivers can also contribute reducing costs if they perform some tasks as preparation for reuse and track until recycling. [:]

[:en]eReuse CHEST – EU Project[:]

Reusing working computers is significantly more sustainable than recycling or disposal. In addition it can deliver wider economic and social benefits. The donation of reusable Electrical and Electronic Equipment (EEE) can support social digital exclusion programmes, encouraging the creation of local employment and reducing electronics waste. The Computer Re-use initiative proposed by the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya aims at creating an ‘open community’ around the reuse of digital devices. This includes the development of an integrated set of software tools and online web sites to support the lifecycle of digital devices: from registration and labeling of new devices, preparation (data clean-up, pre-install), matching demand and offer, tracking reuse.[:]

[:en]Reuse Workshop[:]

Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (Spain) has a service-learning reuse program ( More than 500 students each year are introduced to On this session participate 30 students preparing for reuse more than 40 computers in less than one hour. They are trained in Device Inventory, a software to assist the diagnostic and inventory of digital devices. Computers are boot by network and a program runs in unattended way that test performs a hardware test, capture hardware characteristics for rating and serial number for traceability and reporting.[:]

Mobile Commons Congress and UPC BarcelonaTech hosts Mobile Commons Congress. This year we will emphasize technological systems management pro-common goods, which are those that are shared in a community. We will be attended by experts in the field of reuse and cooperation in ICT as Leandro Navarro, a researcher and professor at the UPC as well as being the coordinator of the UPC in the European research project He will talk about the concept of “commons” from various examples in the field of reuse of computer equipment and network infrastructure community (

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Training on Tools

On 9 October we conduct training to target groups to validate the degree of compliance with the functional and nonfunctional requirements. The session trained technicians on tools focused on inventory, testing, certified data erasure and labeling digital devices. There were over 50 attendees and assessment was very satisfactory.