International Journal of Production Research Special Issue Call for Papers

Towards a circular economy production system: trends and challenges for operations management

International Journal of Production Research

In contrast to the “take, make and dispose” widely used production model, the Circular Economy (CE) approach is gaining increasing attention from academia, practitioners and policy-makers.

CE paradigm focuses on closing the loop in the production-consumption scheme by implementing restorative systems towards achieving a better balance between the economy, the environment, and hence improving well-being of humanity. CE assumes an efficient circulation of flow of materials, components and products and the use of raw materials and natural resources such as energy and water through the whole production system. To this end, CE aims to regenerate resources, reduce wastes and losses, and enlarge the usability/utility of products, components and materials, as a means of reducing carbon emissions and the depletion of natural resources. This is a not a zero sum game and in a fierce competitive world, companies around the World have started to embrace CE as an opportunity to gain competitive advantages and bring value to their stakeholders. From a theoretical perspective, a number of concepts, approaches and/or paradigms have been related to CE, such as cradle-to-cradle, sustainability, industrial ecology, blue economy, circular business models, closed loop value chain, green supply chain and closed loop supply chain to name a few. Whilst the number of research papers on CE, and the companies keen to adopt it are increasing, there are still many challenges to be addressed from an operational point of view.

With this Special Issue we challenge researchers and practitioners to unpick the essential contributions that operations management approaches should make to support the adoption of the CE paradigm in companies and organizations around the World. We invite researchers to submit cutting-edge research to build and extend the existing body of literature and applications of classical operations management theories in connection with CE. Research that builds theory, validates and extends existing theory with rigorous research methods is especially invited. Submissions from all theoretical and empirical perspectives are encouraged.

The potential topics include (but are not limited to):

  • Material and product design to improve resource usage, circularity and extend usability
  • Manufacturing and remanufacturing operations
  • Assembly and disassembly for reuse, recycling and repurposing
  • Circular production planning, lot-sizing and inventory management
  • Machining processes in a resource depletion setting
  • Implications of circular economy for vehicle routing
  • Supply chain redesign for circular economy
  • Indicators development for circular economy production system

Submission Details

Deadline for submissions: November 30, 2017

Submit your paper online:

For more information on submitting to the International Journal of Production Research, read the journal's Instructions for Authors.

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