How to build a circular economy

Jul 18, 2018


As manufacturers around the world attempt the transition from the "take, make and dispose" model of linear economies to more circular models that aim to minimize waste and resource input and emphasize recycling, some roadblocks have emerged. A Harvard Business Review article co-written by Rob Herb, Vice President of Asset Management at DLL and Michael Rinaldi, Assistant Vice President, Sustainable Business Development at Rabobank examines these barriers and identifies three components companies must implement to overcome the obstacles and make circular economies work for their businesses.

Barriers to a circular economy

Companies are facing serious challenges when it comes to executing a circular economy strategy within their organizations. The article explains that companies typically run into one or more of these barriers:

  • Products are not designed with circularity in mind
  • Lack of access to used products
  • Cannot refurbish or recycle in a cost-effective way
  • Customers don't want to purchase "used" products

 How to overcome barriers to a circular economy

In the article, the thought leaders identify three key tactics companies have taken to be successful in building circular economies:

  • Implemented modular product architectures
  • Leased instead of sold at least a portion of their products
  • Expanded their refurbishing operations

 Circular economy success

Through direct experience with life cycle asset management at DLL, the article features success stories from DLL partners JLG Industries and Philips Healthcare.

Read the Harvard Business Review article, Rethinking Sustainability in Light of the EU’s New Circular Economy Policy, for more insights on how to take care of your business while protecting the environment. To learn more about how DLL supports its partners in achieving circular economies, click here.

Read about how DLL is helping its partners reap the benefits of modular design.

Rob Herb
Rob Herb