ESCF Circular

logo ESCF Circular

The EU has set ambitious sustainability goals – including a fully circular economy by 2050! Business leaders are looking to translate these ambitions into concrete actions. Yet transitioning towards circularity requires a mentality shift and thorough redesign of supply chains and operations.

Circular chains
Compared to classic linear chains, circular chains are more complex – they include many interdependencies and feedback loops. Indeed, additional material flows emerge as waste gets recycled, or as manufacturers take back used products for remanufacturing. Organizing such new material flows also calls for new logistics solutions, new information feedback, new financial flows, and new business models.

ESCF Circular | LINCIT

The ESCF Circular LINCIT program aims to guide the involved companies to embrace a circular business ecosystem with the ambition to (1) increase their circularity level to at least 20% and (2) reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 49% in 2030, in line with national policy.
Researchers, ESCF professionals, MSc and PhD students are involved.

While many frontrunners are “born circular” (that is, they designed a circular business model from the very start), most businesses need to transition from a linear to circular business ecosystem step by step. This transition is a journey that requires a mentality shift and thorough redesign of supply chains and operations. To further explore the challenges, we organized a workshop on 15 March 2022. Watch ESCF members Chep, Shell, Van Happen Containers, and Philips on their circular challenges: 

For the presentations and a recap of the full day, visit this page.

Next steps

We received an official statement that the project “Transitioning to a Circular Business Ecosystem” (LINCIT) is granted. About thirty companies (both SMEs and large firms) will be involved to develop new circular activities and to move the circular transition forward.

The LINCIT project focuses on developing knowledge, insights, and tools for guiding companies with their transition from linear supply chains to circular business ecosystems and organizing the associated logistics and operational processes. The project studies the transition from a linear to circular economy from an ecosystem perspective.

The research questions will be studied in a Living Lab with three use case clusters, directly relevant to the Living Lab partners, and organized along the circularity ladder: (1) reusable packaging and transport items, (2) servitization and remanufacturing, and (3) circular plastics.

Progress within LINCIT will be published in a quarterly newsletter
LINCIT newsletter #1 – Autumn 2023
LINCIT newsletter #2 – Winter 2024

ESCF researchers are involved in this program
Alex Alblas: Associate Professor of Product and Process Innovation at TU/e
Zümbül Atan: Associate Professor on multi-echelon supply chains subject to demand and supply uncertainties at TU/e
Christina Imdahl: Assistant Professor of Machine Learning in Operations Management at TU/e
Néomie Raassens: Associate Professor of Servitization and Innovation Outsourcing at TU/e
Yeqing Zhou: Assistant Professor in Operations Management at TU/e

Academic Partners
Eindhoven University of Technology
HU University of Applied Sciences
NHL Stenden University
Wageningen University & Research 

ESCF Circular | CAMS

The ESCF Circular CAMS program aims to accelerate transition to a digitally integrated closed-loop supply chain. The program runs from 2024-2027 and represents Modular prefabricated construction: A Circular Asset Management System for closed-loop supply and logistics chains. The goal is to: 
1. Develop a Circular Asset Management System for syndicates of stakeholders for closed-loop supply chain in modular construction
2. Develop tools to enable the (semi-) automation of an optimized circular construction process.

ESCF researcher involved in this program
Claudia Fecarotti: Assistant Professor Resilient Asset Management and Maintenance at TU/e

Eindhoven University of Technology