Circular business models are business models that are closing, narrowing,
slowing, intensifying, and dematerializing loops, to minimize the resource
inputs into and the waste and emission leakage out of the organizational
system. This comprises
recycling measures (closing),
(narrowing), use phase extensions (slowing or extending), a more intense use
phase (intensifying), and the substitution of product utility by service and
software solutions (dematerializing).
While the initial focus
of academic, industry,
and policy activities
was mainly focused on
the development of re-X
technology, it soon
became clear that the
their implementation. To
leverage this technology
for the transition
have to work together.
This shifted attention
towards business model
innovation as a key
leverage for 'circular'
Sustainable development within a business can create value for customers,
investors, and the environment. A sustainable business must meet customer
needs while, at the same time, treating the environment well. To succeed
in such an approach, where stakeholder balancing and joint solutions are
key, requires a structural approach. One philosophy, that includes many
different tools and methods, is the concept of Sustainable Enterprise
Excellence. Another is the adoption of the concept of responsible
The definition of "green jobs" is ambiguous, but it is generally agreed that
these jobs, the result of green business, should be linked to clean energy,
and contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases. These corporations can
be seen as generators of not only "green energy", but as producers of new "materialities"
that are the product of the technologies these firms developed and deployed
Organizations that give back to the community, whether through employees
volunteering their time or through charitable donations are often considered
socially sustainable. Organizations also can encourage education in their
communities by training their employees and offering internships to younger
members of the community. Practices such as these increase the education
level and quality of life in the community.
For a business to be truly sustainable, it must sustain not only the
necessary environmental resources, but also social resources—including
employees, customers (the community), and its reputation.
Corporate sustainability strategies
Corporate sustainability strategies can aim to take advantage of sustainable
revenue opportunities, while protecting the value of business against
increasing energy costs, the costs of meeting regulatory requirements,
changes in the way customers perceive brands and products, and the volatile
price of resources.
Not all eco-strategies can be incorporated into a company's Eco-portfolio
immediately. The widely practiced strategies include: Innovation,
Collaboration, Process Improvement and Sustainability reporting.
1. Innovation & Technology
This introverted method of sustainable corporate practices focuses on a
company's ability to change its products and services towards less waste
production and sustainable best practices.
The formation of networks with similar or partner companies facilitates
knowledge sharing and propels innovation.
3. Process Improvement
Continuous process surveying and improvement are essential to reduction in
waste. Employee awareness of company-wide sustainability plan further aids
the integration of new and improved processes.
4. Sustainability Reporting
Periodic reporting of company performance in relation to goals. These goals
are often incorporated into the corporate mission.
Sustainable Scoring Platform
5. Greening the Supply Chain
Sustainable procurement is important for any sustainability strategy as a
company's impact on the environment is much bigger than the products that
they consume. The B Corporation (certification) model is a good example of
one that encourages companies to focus on this
Additionally, companies might consider implementing a sound measurement and
management system with readjustment procedures, as well as a regular forum
for all stakeholders to discuss sustainability issues. The
Sustainability Balanced Scorecard is a performance measurement and
management system aiming at balancing financial and non-financial as well as
short and long-term measures. It explicitly integrates strategically
relevant environmental, social and ethical goals into the overall
performance management system  and supports strategic sustainability
A circular economy (also referred to as "circularity") is an economic
system that tackles global challenges like climate change, biodiversity
loss, waste, and pollution.
Circular development is a model of economic, social and environmental
production and consumption that aims to build a sustainable society based on
a circular model. The purpose is to be able to form a model that is no
longer linear and transform towards a circular economy. This new form of
society is based on the principle of circular economy. The aim is to
enable economies and societies in general to become more autonomous,
sustainable and in tune with the issue of environmental resources.
The circular economy is a framework of three principles, driven by design:
Eliminate waste and pollution, Keep products and materials in use and
Regenerate natural systems. It is based increasingly on renewable energy and
materials, and it is accelerated by digital innovation. It is a resilient,
distributed, diverse, and inclusive economic model. The circular economy is
an economic concept often linked to the sustainable development, provision
of the Sustainable Development Goals (Global Development Goals) and the
green economy but which goes further than the latter. Indeed, rather than
only think to reduce the ecological and environmental impact of the
industries and the amount of waste, it aims to transform our economy into
one that is regenerative. In other words, the goal is to make the economy
as circular as possible, by thinking to new processes and solutions for
the optimization of resources, decoupling reliance on finite resources.
Sustainability is often confused with corporate social responsibility (CSR),
though the two are not the same. Bansal and DesJardine (2014) state that the
notion of ‘time’ discriminates sustainability from CSR and other similar
concepts. Whereas ethics, morality, and norms permeate CSR, sustainability
only obliges businesses to make intertemporal trade-offs to safeguard
intergenerational equity. Short-termism is the bane of sustainability.
CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY (CSR).
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a form of international private
business self-regulation which aims to contribute to societal goals of a
philanthropic, activist, or charitable nature by engaging in or supporting
volunteering or ethically-oriented practices. While once it was possible
to describe CSR as an internal organisational policy or a corporate ethic
strategy, that time has passed as various national and international laws
have been developed and various organisations have used their authority to
push it beyond individual or even industry-wide initiatives. While it has
been considered a form of corporate self-regulation for some time, over
the last decade or so it has moved considerably from voluntary decisions at
the level of individual organizations to mandatory schemes at regional,
national, and international levels.
Considered at the organisational level, CSR is generally understood as a
strategic initiative that contributes to a brand's reputation. As such,
social responsibility initiatives must coherently align with and be
integrated into a business model to be successful. With some models, a
firm's implementation of CSR goes beyond compliance with regulatory
requirements and engages in "actions that appear to further some social
good, beyond the interests of the firm and that which is required by
Furthermore, businesses may engage in CSR for strategic or ethical purposes.
From a strategic perspective, CSR can contribute to firm profits,
particularly if brands voluntarily self-report both the positive and
negative outcomes of their endeavors. In part, these benefits accrue by
increasing positive public relations and high ethical standards to reduce
business and legal risk by taking responsibility for corporate actions. CSR
strategies encourage the company to make a positive impact on the
environment and stakeholders including consumers, employees, investors,
communities, and others. From an ethical perspective, some businesses
will adopt CSR policies and practices because of the ethical beliefs of
senior management: for example, the CEO of outdoor-apparel company
Patagonia, Inc. argues that harming the environment is ethically