A circular economy

is a systemic approach to economic development designed to benefit businesses, society, and the environment.

In contrast to the ‘take-make-waste’ linear model, a circular economy is regenerative by design and aims to gradually decouple growth from the consumption of finite resources. After defining what an economy actually is, this learning path explores the nuances of the concept of a circular economy, including the difference between biological and technical materials, the different opportunities that exist to keep materials and products in use, and the history of the idea. Finally, the benefits of shifting from a linear to a circular economy are highlighted.


An economy that is restorative and regenerative by design.

In a circular economy economic activity builds and rebuilds overall system health. The concept recognises the importance of the economy needing to work effectively at all scales – for big and small businesses, for organisations and individuals, globally and locally.
It is based on three principles:

Design out waste and pollution

Keep products and materials in use

Regenerate natural systems

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