The Role and Value of Data in Circular Business Models – a Systematic Literature Review


  • Päivi Luoma University of Helsinki
  • Anne Toppinen
  • Esko Penttinen



Purpose: A systematic review of the literature on circular business models was performed, for synthesis of what it reveals about the role and value of data in those models. The increasing quantity of supply-chain and life-cycle data available has potential to be a signifi­cant driver of circular business models. The paper describes the current state of knowledge and identifies avenues for further research related to use of various forms of data in the models.

Design: A systematic review of literature on the use of data in circular business models was carried out, to inform understanding of the existing body of knowledge and provide a firm foundation for further research.

Findings: The literature reviewed indicates that the understanding of the role and value of data in circular business models is fragmented. Nonetheless, data and related technologies, services, and platforms are commonly seen as drivers and enablers of circular economy. Among the further research opportunities are work on collaboration in capturing the value of data in circular business models and on data as a source of business-model innovation.

Value: The work provides new insight on transforming data-driven value creation into good business and represents one of the first comprehensive reviews addressing data’s value in a networked circular-economy context. It aids in understanding what data-driven circular business models enable, how companies can create new circular business, and how the emergence of such networked business can be accelerated.






Special Issue: Fostering Multi- and Interdisciplinary Business Model Research