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Organizational transition management of circular business model innovations

Hofmann, Florian; Jaeger‐Erben, Melanie

Scholars and practitioners across fields increasingly recognize that business models for the circular economy may be an effective lever for solving ecological persistent problems such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and growing natural resource scarcity. Despite a growing interest in the potential of circular business models, interconnections between the organizational dimensions of firms and their business model innovation processes remain underexplored. Based on problem‐centered expert interviews with business consultants experienced in circular business development, this study creates a conceptual model that offers structured knowledge about why firms steadily reproduce linear BMs and how incumbents manifest themselves as a constant linear‐oriented value creation system. The model also demonstrates organizational conditions and management strategies that frustrate the reproduction of linear BMs and, thus, enable initial moves towards CBM innovation. Building on this, the article provides a set of propositions on how an organizational transition management may be configured and what incumbents require to successfully navigate circular business model innovation. The findings provide a foundation for a contemporary understanding of circular business model transition management, which simultaneously serve as impulses for future research investigations.
Published in: Business Strategy and the Environment, 10.1002/bse.2542, Wiley