Digital technologies enabling circular value creation: An expert study of business practices
Sprache des Vortragstitels:
15. Forschungskolloquium Innovation & Value Creation
Sprache des Tagungstitel:
Digital Technologies may contribute to the operationalisation of the circular economy. Smart products connected through the Internet of Things may facilitate remote data collection and allow for closing the information gap that is hindering value recovery after product use. For instance, tracking and identification technologies may support products and components redeployment. Moreover, using sensors to assess product condition could help firms determine their remaining useful life while they are in use by the customer. Furthermore, the development of digitally enabled services may encourage firms to keep their products at their highest value during their entire lifetime and reuse materials after end of life. However, extant literature has highlighted the lack of understanding of the interplay among smart products, services and the circular economy. The purpose of this study is to identify business practices that reveal how the interplay among these concepts unfolds and contributes to the transition towards circularity. The authors employ an exploratory study approach based on 34 semi-structured interviews with experts from industry, consultancies, and research organisations. Most firms in the study have a product-oriented business model and seek to understand the use phase by developing smart products. Smart products have facilitated the intensification of the service offer and the development of smart circular strategies. They have also allowed the feedback of valuable information into product research and development.