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Towards developing a framework for circular business model scalability analysis: evidences from fashion retail value chain

Hultberg, Emelie; Pal, Rudrajeet; Sandberg, Erik

FG Transdisziplinäre Nachhaltigkeitsforschung in der Elektronik

The concept of circular economy and circular business models have received increasing attention in recent years, especially when it comes to innovation and implementation. The scalability aspect of these models is however less explored. This can also be seen in one off the world’s most resource draining industries the fashion industry. In recent years circular economy has frequently been mentioned in sustainability reports and new business models have emerged. This paper aims to create a framework that can be used for further analysis of scalability of circular business models in the fashion industry. To do this we draw on the literature on business model scalability and apply learnings form these papers to a CBM context in the fashion industry. Through a systematic literature review of 25 articles, we find three different themes of scalability: central strategies, supporting activities and required resources. In this paper, we have further explored the central strategies and their different orientations, namely growth, connection, efficiency and adaptability. The implications of these findings are discussed in relation to circular business action points as stated by 94 fashion companies, and reported in Global Fashion Agenda report. Further research is needed to elaborate these themes for understanding scalability of circular business models in the fashion industry, explore the underpinning logics, and prescribe a comprehensive framework on its basis.