Special |

The circular economy

As resources dwindle and waste piles up, the ‘take, make and dispose’ linear model of economics is in need of a rethink. In a special issue, Nature examines how governments, industries and designers are looking to close the loop. In a circular economy, waste materials and energy are redefined as inputs by breaking down and repurposing goods or supplying them as services. It is more sustainable; it creates jobs. So, what research is needed?


A new relationship with our goods and materials would save resources and energy and create local jobs, explains Walter R. Stahel.

Comment | | Nature

The country consumes the most resources in the world and produces the most waste — but it also has the most advanced solutions, say John A. Mathews and Hao Tan.

Comment | | Nature

To reduce consumption and waste we must overcome our squeamishness about repurposing pre-owned possessions, says Bruce Hood.

Comment | | Nature

Books and Arts

In linear economics, objects of desire from skyscrapers to paperclips are waste waiting to happen. Now, linearity is reaching the end of the line: designers are looking to the loop and redefining refuse as resource.

Books & Arts | | Nature