We conduct evidenced-based research in the area of sustainability in its broadest interpretation, for public and private sector clients across the EU. Our research and analytical services enhance the effectiveness, efficiency and impact of, and add value to, the policy decisions and strategies of our clients as we draw on more than 20 years' experience in the sustainability sector.
We have extensive experience of conducting market studies and analysing materials flows and policy impacts, and of determining risk to businesses from resource depletion, geo-political influences, conflict minerals, regulation and the like.
Our Project Teams
Our teams combine technical expertise with practical, sectoral understanding: our research staff hold post-graduate qualifications in relevant technical disciplines, and our experienced economists provide supporting competitiveness and cost-benefit analysis. They work in project teams alongside staff with financial and managerial disciplines.
We build relationships and credibility with stakeholders, and this is a key element of our work. Our staff have personal networks that go back many years. We foster our networks by contributing voluntary time to presentations and membership of sector-specific committees and groups. This investment is often rewarded with easier access to industry data.
Rather than provide subjective opinion we use the principle of inductive research. This semi-quantitative approach endeavours to assign metrics to parameters of interest. We use techniques that can produce quantifiable outputs wherever possible, to reduce dependence on opinions of individual authors and experts. By using such techniques, we aim to arrive at substantiated findings to provide a firm basis on which to draw inferences and make recommendations.
Our rigorous project management practices allow us to achieve stated objectives and maximise the benefits of the project to the client.
We use project management methods generally equivalent to PRINCE2 to ensure the reliability, validity and comparability of the information collected as well as the quality of our analysis and reporting. Oakdene Hollins operates to quality management system ISO 9001:2008 for which we are externally audited annually.
Our report for Defra estimates potential savings to the UK economy from corporate resource efficiency interventions. Updating previous studies, we quantified savings of £5.7-7.2 billion for the UK economy from efficiency improvements related to water, energy, raw material consumption and waste generation. There is still work to be done for other sectors to ensure the challenge and ambition of possible savings are properly quantified. For companies, the message is that resource efficiency savings are still there to be made.
18 October 2017Download PDF
Towards a circular economy - Waste management in the EU
We have to move away from thinking of waste as a problem to realising that it is a resource. This requires cooperation between the waste industry and circular economy enterprises, engaged citizens and integrated infrastructure at all levels from local to EU-wide. This report examines five waste streams identified in the EU’s Circular Economy Action Plan: municipal, packaging, food, bio- and critical raw material wastes.
18 October 2017Download PDF
The economic value of surface coatings
An overview of the surface coatings sector in the UK.
19 September 2017Download PDF
Critical Raw Materials in the EU - 2014
We led this study which added six more critical raw materials to the 14 listed by the EU in 2010.
25 January 2017Download PDF
Chemical recycling – A solution for Europe’s waste textile mountain?
The RESYNTEX project will build a pilot plant to extract proteins, glucose, polyamide oligomers and PET monomers from residual textile waste. Our market study identified 9.35MT of textile waste being landfilled or incinerated in the EU and recommended the residual waste textiles most suited to the plant's input needs.
16 December 2016Download PDF
Remanufacturing Mission to China
We took part in a FCO-sponsored mission to China in May 2016. The agenda included a Sino-UK Remanufacturing workshop, presenting to the World Remanufacturing Summit 2016 and meetings with senior Chinese Government officials.
7 December 2016Download PDF
Waste treatment of end of life mattresses in the UK
Our 2016 report for the NBF updates our 2014 report on the state of mattress recycling/re-use in the UK. It identifies why recent increases in recycling may not be sustained, and makes recommendations to promote and develop the sector.
26 July 2016Download PDF
UK Assessment of Footprinting Methods - Policy Report (25pp)
UK businesses find environmental footprinting useful, but our study finds scant evidence for the claimed benefits for cross-border trade. It's doubtful whether using a single method across the EC would cause greater resource efficiency than is already achieved. See also our technical report.
28 April 2016Download PDF
UK Assessment of Footprinting Methods - Technical Report (107pp)
This technical report looks at the uptake of environmental footprinting methods by over 80 UK businesses to see which - and how many - of the different methods they use, and to assess the costs and benefits of using them. It informs Defra policy at UK and European level.
28 April 2016Download PDF
ERN Remanufacturing Market Study
This preliminary report gathers data on remanufacturing across nine key sectors to calculate the current level of reman activity in EU member states in terms of economic value, numbers employed and approximate carbon benefits.
23 March 2016Download PDF
Scrutiny of Horizon 2020 focusing on the European Parliament’s priorities
This in-depth analysis identifies factors affecting the European Parliament’s key priorities for the Horizon 2020 programme, as well as implementation bottlenecks. We recommend how better to implement existing measures.
22 March 2016Download PDF
End of Life Report for Mattresses - National Bed Federation
Our report finds that 30% more mattresses were recycled in 2013 than in 2012. It investigates the lifecycle of mattresses and options for them at end of life. We shed light on this complex area, including where the constituent parts end up once a mattress is dismantled.
11 November 2015Download PDF
Best Environmental Management Practice Report – Food & Beverages
Our report is a tool for the food & beverage sector to improve companies' environmental performance. We detail market leaders' proven and practical strategies, which if more widely adopted, could result in exceptional environmental performance.
23 October 2015Website link
Monitoring impacts from EC Regulation No 333/2011: End-of-waste criteria for Al/Fe scrap
In 2011, the EC established criteria by which scrap from iron & steel and aluminium & its alloys could cease to be regulated as waste. We examine the impacts of Regulation 333/2011, gathering evidence from ca. 250 companies, 15 industry associations & 25 Competent Authorities.
18 March 2015Download PDF
Reducing Food Waste by Extending Product Life
Extending product shelf life by a single day could save £600m and prevent 0.23 million tonnes of household waste. We looked at how changes in the supply chain could prevent waste without compromising product safety or quality.
5 March 2015Website link
Tagging clothing for recycling
Using 2D barcodes to tag textiles through to the end of life could add value at all stages of the life cycle of textiles. We highlight some of the key benefits of such labelling for all stakeholders along the supply chain.
30 January 2015Download PDF
Critical materials outperform base metals: Tracking price trends for the EU critical raw material list.
Prices for critical raw materials, particularly rare earths, spiked in 2011 after the re-emergence of the commodity boom and concerns about resource nationalism. Our analysis shows they still outperformed exchange traded base and precious metals by some margin.
30 June 2014Download PDF
Risk Factors in Developing Mineral and Metal Projects
15 key risk factors affecting the development of pipeline projects are examined, ranking their importance over time and across each stage of the supply chain. Our report, available for sale from the International Lead & Zinc Study Group website, will inform future minerals policies and aid in planning new projects.
20 January 2014Download PDF
The role of Lean thinking in increasing resource efficiency in the UK food and drink supply chain
Using Lean techniques could unlock around £5bn of identified resource efficiency opportunities in the food & drink supply chain. Key recommendations on the most effective strategies can be found in this report.
21 November 2013Download PDF
Electrical products: UK mapping of raw material consumption and waste.
This research tracks the flow of critical and valuable raw materials in electrical and electronic products through the UK economy. We identify opportunities to increase recovery and reduce losses of critical raw materials in the UK.
4 November 2013Download PDF
Critical Metals in the Path towards the Decarbonisation of the EU Energy Sector
The transition to a low-carbon economy is a central priority of EU policy, of which supply of critical metals to the energy sector is a vital part. Our report identifies metals which could be a bottle-neck in the supply chain. It recommends strategies, for both government and businesses, to mitigate supply chain risks for key technologies.
4 November 2013Download PDF
Conflict Minerals: Our viewpoint on EC policy discussion for the ICT industry
In Sept 2013, Karel De Gucht, European Commissioner for Trade called for the European Union to take action on the issue of conflict minerals. Read Oakdene Hollins' assessment of the potential impact of such action on the ICT industry.
17 September 2013Download PDF
Repair or Replace? Insights from Behavioural Economics
We summarise results and insights gained from research on repair and reuse. Our research involved private sector companies along the supply chain including OEMs, warranty suppliers, retailers, small and large repair organisations and trade associations.
11 July 2013Download PDF