In search of a circular supply chain archetype – a content-analysis-based literature review


This paper addresses questions of how extant research discourses concerning the sustainability of supply chains contribute to understanding about circularity in supply chain configurations that support restorative and regenerative processes, as espoused by the Circular Economy ideal. In response to these questions, we develop a content-based literature analysis to progress theoretical body of knowledge and conceptualise the notion of a circular supply chain. We derive an archetypal form from four antecedent sustainable supply chain narratives – ‘reverse logistics’, ‘green supply chains’, ‘sustainable supply chain management’ and ‘closed-loop supply chains’. This paper offers five propositions about what the circular supply chain archetype represents in terms of its scope, focus and impact. Novel insights lead to a definition of circular supply chain and a more coherent foundation for future inquiry and practice.

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Divisions: College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School
College of Business and Social Sciences > Aston Business School > Operations & Information Management
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in Production Planning & Control on 21 May 2018, available online at:
Publication ISSN: 1366-5871
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 08:30
Date Deposited: 30 Jan 2019 10:51
Full Text Link: https://dspace. ... ndle/1826/13382
Related URLs: https://www.tan ... 87.2017.1343502 (Publisher URL)
PURE Output Type: Article
Published Date: 2018
Published Online Date: 2018-05-21
Accepted Date: 2017-06-14
Authors: Batista, Luciano (ORCID Profile 0000-0002-0367-2975)
Bourlakis, Michael
Smart, Palie
Maull, Roger



Version: Accepted Version

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