Knowledge as a Circular Resource: Integrating Information Exchange and Circular Business Models for Product-life Extension

Rasmus Jørgensen*, Enrico Scarso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review

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The change from a linear to a circular business model requires the development of new services integrating information exchange and product usage to prolong product life through maintenance and repair. Information exchange has been identified as important for promoting circular economy, and this study draws on empirical data from a two case studies to demonstrate which kind of information supports maintenance and repair, and how the information exchange can be facilitated. Case company A offered maintenance of white goods (e.g., washing machine) as a subscription service where reminders and maintenance guides were emailed monthly to customers. Company B offered virtually guided repairs of white goods. The study finds that sharing information on what and when to do something facilitates end-users to participate in maintenance and learn about maintenance; more than half of the company A questioned customers reported that they learnt from guides and were involved in maintenance due to guides and reminders. For repair the problem description and possible solutions is information that must be exchanged, and a simple voice and video call can facilitate repairs that prolong product life with a minimum cost for the end-user. Both types of information exchange are facilitated by simple-tech solutions relying on known and cheap technology (e.g., email service, video call, and text-messaging). The findings of the study suggest that the development of circular business models does not always require expensive high-tech solutions to integrate information flow with product flow and usage, and companies are recommended to experiment with designing solutions based on known technology.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings IFKAD 2023 : Managing Knowledge for Sustainability
EditorsAntonio Lerro, Daniela Carlucci, Giovanni Schiuma
Number of pages15
Place of PublicationMatera
PublisherInstitute of Knowledge Asset Management (IKAM)
Publication date2023
ISBN (Electronic)9788896687161
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Event18th International Forum on Knowledge Asset Dynamics: Managing Knowledge for Sustainability - University of Basilicata, Matera, Italy
Duration: 7 Jun 20239 Jun 2023
Conference number: 18


Conference18th International Forum on Knowledge Asset Dynamics
LocationUniversity of Basilicata
Internet address
SeriesProceedings IFKAD


  • Circular business models
  • Knowledge management
  • Information exchange
  • Case study

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