Introduction to Circular Economy Supply Chains: From Supply Chains to Value Systems

Lydia Bals, Wendy L. Tate, Lisa M. Ellram

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A circular economy perspective embraces a systemic, cradle-to-cradle notion that everything is designed to be reused as long as possible and then recaptured and repurposed when reuse is no longer possible. Designing for a circular economy ecosystem requires a holistic, integrative viewpoint, spanning all aspects of design and development and considering many supply chain actors, far beyond that of traditional supply chains. This edited book adopts a biomimetic lens, highlighting the need for cross-industry flows and need for different actors (beyond producers and consumers) in circular value cycles. Enablers such as incentives and/or legislation are also discussed. While biomimicry provides the structure for organizing this book, individual chapters build on other theoretical lenses and concepts, such as stakeholder theory, etc. The intent is to move beyond a dyadic (buyer–supplier) view, embracing a holistic network or ecosystem view, to consider a cross-industry system perspective, where there is a diversity of actors (covering four actor groups: producers, consumers, scavengers, and decomposers) needed for a working ecosystem. This edited book offers a comprehensive overview of system components and actors, including how the circular economy adds value, the role of producers and consumers, the spectrum of recovery possibilities to return products back to the consumption supply chain, and the essential role of information management.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCircular Economy Supply Chains : From Chains to Systems
EditorsLydia Bals, Wendy L. Tate, Lisa M. Ellram
Number of pages25
Place of PublicationBingley
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing
Publication date2022
ISBN (Print)9781839825453
ISBN (Electronic)9781839825446, 9781839825460
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Circular economy
  • Circular systems
  • Biomimicry
  • Value systems
  • Circular flows
  • Ecosystem view

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