The Handbook introduces, contextualises, critiques, and discusses a range of perspectives associated with the concept of the circular economy. These perspectives span an array of subjects including economics, environmental policymaking, sociology, environmental science, environmental and industrial engineering, management, international development, and human geography.

A fundamental underpinning of the Handbook is that it takes account of a wide range of sectors, as well as geographical perspectives that incorporate both a Global North and Global South world context. This approach is crucial because it is only within such a holistic perspective that the circular economy concept can truly be examined. In addition, these issues are examined both from a theoretical as well as a practical perspective, using real-world case studies for illustration.

Given its wide subject, sectoral, and geographical areas of focus, the Handbook should be of value not only for those undertaking research in the field of circular economy, but also stakeholders involved in policymaking, as well as decision-making on the front line.

chapter 1|7 pages


Examining the concept of the circular economy

part I|81 pages

The need for and challenges surrounding circularity

chapter 2|9 pages

Natural resources. Consumption, pollution, and health risks

Developed versus developing economies

chapter 3|14 pages

Consumption and materialism

From acquisitive to responsible materialism

chapter 5|8 pages

Environmental justice, waste management, and the circular economy

Global perspectives

chapter 6|4 pages

Resource consumption and the associated health risks

A brief overview

chapter 8|9 pages

Triggers for industrial symbiosis

Lessons learnt from twenty-five case studies

part II|71 pages

Measuring and implementing circularity

chapter 12|14 pages

Ecodesign and circular design of products

Concepts, assessment, and strategies

chapter 14|11 pages

Complexity and the circular economy

Systems approaches for change

chapter 15|9 pages

Circular economy meso-level planning

An approach with ‘distributed economies’

part III|46 pages

Policy and legislative considerations

part IV|62 pages

Sharing economies and capacity building

chapter 23|9 pages

Overcoming financial, social, and environmental challenges faced by cooperatives

Case studies from the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

chapter 25|9 pages

Refugee camps and circular economy in Palestinian West Bank

Challenges and opportunities

part V|63 pages


chapter 26|14 pages

Exploring household dynamics for recycling in the United Kingdom

A case study of recycling habits in greater London

chapter 27|18 pages

Circular start-ups

Five business model archetypes as frontrunners of circular disruption

chapter 28|10 pages

Enablers and barriers for industrial symbiosis

Lessons learnt from twenty-five case studies

part VI|104 pages


chapter 31|13 pages

Modular smartphones and circular design strategies

The shape of things to come?

chapter 34|6 pages

Circular economy initiatives in India

A case study approach

chapter 38|10 pages

Circular economy principles in Africa

The case of off-grid solar in Kenya

chapter 39|14 pages

Circular supply chain

Emerging opportunities and challenges

chapter |5 pages