Abstract

Digital platforms, regarded as ecosystem enablers, and ecosystems themselves are currently fields of action that are frequently addressed in research and in business practice. One area of interest in this context is the concept of industrial symbiosis, which aims to create sustainable industrial ecosystems through resource exchange and sharing. Platform-supported industrial symbiosis is considered a promising way to accelerate sustainable industrial development. However, the diffusion and maturity of both industrial symbiosis and its corresponding platforms are still low in practice. This paper examines digital platforms developed specifically for industrial symbiosis. Different, currently neglected, issues limiting the number/diffusion of these platforms in practice are derived and discussed. To address these issues, we propose adoption of a platform ecosystem perspective, which is currently not present in industrial symbiosis research. Based on this, we present a novel idea: an industrial symbiosis platform builder. Within this paper, we describe the concept of this tool and how it could lead to an industrial symbiosis-specific platform ecosystem. At its core, the tool shall enable and support the development of multiple different platforms for individual industrial ecosystems in a convenient way.

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