While there is common agreement that the transition towards a Circular Economy could foster more sustainable futures, there is a lack of discussion about how a truly (viable, feasible, and desirable) circular economic system should be organised. Most of the current literature on Circular Economy fails to recognise this, presenting the transition towards a Circular Economy as a straightforward, neutral, and apolitical process, implicitly characterised by a techno-optimistic and eco-modernist stance. Most Circular Economy work is conducted at the practical and technical levels, looking at material and energy flows in production-consumption systems. Emphasis is placed on metrics, tools, and instruments; however, the basic assumptions concerning societal structures, along with underlying worldviews which should be embedded in a Circular Economy are largely overlooked or unclear.
- Practical and theoretical investigations about the compatibility of CE models with free-market and growth-oriented economic contexts will be explored;
- The emergence of alternative CE framings will be investigated, along with their links to alternative production networks
- A comparison of linear and circular production systems in selected industries (for instance, electrical and electronic equipment) will be performed, by assessing, across a wide range of economic, environmental and social indicators, and through a life-cycle assessment perspective, the performances of alternative systems linked to alternative circular futures.
- An investigation about policy mechanisms and initiatives needed for favouring the implementation of CE systems will be undertaken