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Circular Economy: A Product Life Cycle Perspective on Engineering and Manufacturing Practices



Maya Reslan, Noah Last, Nehika Mathur, KC Morris, Vincenzo Ferrero


Realization of a Circular Economy is paramount to solving global challenges in resource scarcity, sustainable manufacturing, and supply chain uncertainty. A Circular Economy (CE) is an economic system hallmarked by linearity reduction, decoupling of economic growth and resource depletion, and favoring regenerative models that consider sustainability. Growing support for a CE is leading to the proliferation of new economic terms, standards, and research to meet the different goals of CE. However, gaps exist in the formalization of these CE terms, frameworks, and research contributions. This paper provides a system-level context for a CE from the perspective of manufacturing in the product life cycle. We do this using the standard process modeling representation IDEF0. The main contribution of this work is to provide the general context for a CE system by examining each CE activity involved in the creation of a product, reviewing the current literature, identifying current CE standards status and directions, and discussing CE concepts present in current business practices. We anticipate that this work will act as a reference for identifying gaps in research and standards development for integration of CE in manufacturing practices. Through this work, we identified two opportunities for furthering CE progress: metrics for measuring CE success and a standard CE framework with term definitions.
Proceedings Title
Procedia CIRP
Conference Dates
April 4-6, 2022
Conference Location
Leuven, BE
Conference Title
29th CIRP Life Cycle Engineering Conference


Circular Economy, Re-manufacturing, Recycling, IDEF$\emptyset$, Waste Hierarchy, Sustainability, Process Flow, Reuse, Production, Standards, Environment, Product Life Cycle, Sustainable Manufacturing, Manufacturing Standards, Digitization, Manufacturing Reference Model


Reslan, M. , Last, N. , Mathur, N. , Morris, K. and Ferrero, V. (2022), Circular Economy: A Product Life Cycle Perspective on Engineering and Manufacturing Practices, Procedia CIRP, Leuven, BE, [online],, (Accessed June 18, 2024)


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Created April 4, 2022, Updated November 29, 2022