by r2pi project

The Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, Utrecht University, the Netherlands and Deloitte have jointly carried out research on barriers to the Circular Economy (CE) in the European Union.

For this research, a survey with 153 businesses, 55 government officials and expert interviews with forty-seven thought leaders on the circular economy from businesses, governments, academia and NGOs have been carried out.


Two types of barriers emerged as main barriers:


Firstly, there are the cultural barriers of lacking consumer interest and awareness as well as a hesitant company culture. This finding is at odds with claims that the circular economy concept is hyped; rather, the concept may be a niche discussion among sustainable development professionals.


Secondly, market barriers emerged as a core category of barriers, particularly low virgin material prices and high upfront investments costs for circular business models.

Read about all the various barriers spotted by the team in the full report.