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Circular Economy



This course is a first-year elective module for the joint degree MSc Programme on Industrial Ecology and compulsory for the first-year Erasmus Mundus CIRCLE students. The course teaches basic concepts, methods, tools, and indicators related to the circular economy.

Learning goals

  • Explain and compare various concepts and definitions of Circular Economy (CE)

  • Explain and compare various types of business models and governance options for CE

  • Get insight into an analytical framework for CE and execute this framework to a case study

  • Summarize sense and nonsense of and use metrics for CE

  • Criticize and judge various technological options for circularity

  • Test main learnings of the course on a practical case study to generate recommendations and new insights on the transition to a circular economy

Teaching methods/mode of instruction

Interactive lectures with discussions, flipped classrooms using MOOC material, case study based learning.

Type of assessment

Individual assignment on a case study.


Because this course is part of a joint degree between Leiden University and TU Delft, students (also guest and exchange) have to be enrolled to both universities.
All students have to enroll for the course via Brightspace (before the start of the course) and for the exam via uSis, Leiden University. For more information see this website.

Students who are not enrolled for the MSc Industrial Ecology, have to ask for permission from the studyadvisor of Industrial Ecology to join this course, at least one month before the start of the course.

Exchange students can only enroll for this course if their home university has an Exchange agreement with both Leiden University and TU Delft. Exchange students have to ask permission from the studyadvisor of Industrial Ecology as soon as possible, preferably six months before the start of the course.

BrightSpace will be used for communications and distributing study material.