Business and production solutions: closing loops and the circular economy

Brennan, Geraldine, Tennant, Mike and Blomsma, Fenna (2015) Business and production solutions: closing loops and the circular economy. In: Sustainability: Key Issues. Kopnina, Helen and Shoreman-Ouimet, Eleanor, eds. Key Issues in Environment and Sustainability . Routledge: EarthScan, pp. 219-239. ISBN 9780415529860. [Book Section]

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Traditional production frameworks and business models are now being challenged by alternatives that are informed by biology. The alternative paradigm, based on ecosystem models, argues that shifting from linear modes of production to a circular system can address material and energy efficiency by reducing the total volume of raw materials needed when manufacturing consumer products. This chapter introduces frameworks that apply closed-loop models at the product level namely; the Performance Economy, Cradle-to-CradleTM design, The Blue Economy and the Circular Economy.

We discuss the historic development of these ideas and their main contributions. Through the use of examples we explore both practical challenges associated with realising circular strategies as well as their business model implications. We conclude by highlighting some of the theoretical challenges associated with adopting closed-loop models advocating for a critical approach to sustainable resource management which includes circular strategies as part of a toolbox of options.

Item Type: Book Section
Research Areas: A. > Business School > Centre for Enterprise and Economic Development Research (CEEDR)
Item ID: 21177
Notes on copyright: This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge in Sustainability: Key Issues on 06/07/2015, available online:
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Depositing User: Stanislava Angelova
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2017 16:07
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 22:39

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