On this course, you will learn what is meant by the circular economy and why it is needed. In addition you will acquire a deeper appreciation of the importance and opportunities of the circular economy through four different subject areas and at the same time gain a comprehensive picture of the practical applications of the circular economy. As multidisciplinarity, shared expertise and systems thinking are strongly linked to the circular economy, the course is constructed taking these perspectives into account.

In the introduction section we examine the current use of resources and the challenges that gives rise to, and also familiarise ourselves with the circular economy model. We delve deeper into the circular economy by considering its benefits, fundamental principles, challenges, constraints and business models, as well as by looking at what steering instruments and measures could promote the circular economy. In addition, the first section provides an introduction to each practical theme, which are covered in more detail in the following sections.

Sections 1-4 address the subjects covered from the perspective of the application of the circular economy. The subjects are a sustainable food system, forestry related cycles, technical cycles and mobility and the sharing economy.

In the end, you will find the essential vocabulary related to the circular economy as well as a teacher’s guide that contains detailed instructions for delivering the course.

Course learning goals:

The objective of the course is to

  • develop an overall image of the circular economy and understand its basic principles
  • understand the problems of today‚Äôs consumption of resources and how the circular economy can help in resolving these problems
  • become familiar with approaches that could promote the circular economy
  • create a vision of practical activities that could be undertaken by different sectors to promote the circular economy

Course level: Bachelor

Pre-requisities: No pre-requisities

Scope: 3-5 ECTS

Available languages: FIN & ENG

Authors: University of Helsinki, LUT University, University of Eastern Finland and Aalto University.

Where to study: Hanken (course code 38025), University of Eastern Finland (course code 5119445-3001), University of Helsinki (course code MAAT-051), LUT-University (course code BH60A5400).

Course material (ENG):