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Exploring assessment practices of companies actively engaged with circular economy

Roos Lindgreen, Erik; Opferkuch, Katelin; Walker, Anna M.; Salomone, Roberta; Reyes, Tatiana; Raggi, Andrea; Simboli, Alberto; Vermeulen, Walter J. V.; Caeiro, Sandra


Erik Roos Lindgreen

Katelin Opferkuch

Anna M. Walker

Roberta Salomone

Tatiana Reyes

Andrea Raggi

Alberto Simboli

Walter J. V. Vermeulen

Sandra Caeiro


Claire Lea
Project Manager


An emerging research area is dedicated to developing approaches for assessing the ‘circularity’ of companies and their products, within the context of sustainability goals. However, empirical evidence on the uptake of these assessment approaches remains scarce. Using a purposive sampling, we conducted a survey receiving 155 responses and held 43 semi-structured interviews with Dutch and Italian companies active in circular economy (CE), pursuing three research aims: to explore the use of CE and sustainability assessment approaches; to study the process of developing assessment approaches; and to uncover benefits of—and barriers to—CE assessment. While we find high variability of assessment approaches, most often, companies develop tailor-made sustainability indicators and apply life cycle assessments to CE strategies. Importantly, assessment development for CE practices requires and facilitates collaboration with external stakeholders. Finally, we reflect on the paradox of standardisation versus tailoring of assessment approaches within the CE reality and recommend establishing company needs and capabilities before designing assessment approaches.


Roos Lindgreen, E., Opferkuch, K., Walker, A. M., Salomone, R., Reyes, T., Raggi, A., …Caeiro, S. (2022). Exploring assessment practices of companies actively engaged with circular economy. Business strategy and the environment : BSE, 31(4), 1414-1438.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 15, 2021
Online Publication Date Jan 12, 2022
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date Feb 14, 2022
Publicly Available Date Feb 15, 2022
Journal Business Strategy and the Environment
Print ISSN 0964-4733
Electronic ISSN 1099-0836
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 31
Issue 4
Pages 1414-1438
Keywords Circularity indicators; Corporate sustainability; Material flow analysis; Mixed methods; Stakeholder engagement; Sustainability assessment
Public URL


Published article (3.8 Mb)

Copyright Statement
© 2022 The Authors. <br /> This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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