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Review

A Review of Reductionist versus Systems Perspectives towards ‘Doing the Right Strategies Right’ for Circular Economy Implementation

1
College of Agriculture and Agri-industries, Caraga State University, Ampayon, Butuan City 8600, Philippines
2
School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Wayne Wakeland
Received: 11 May 2021 / Revised: 25 May 2021 / Accepted: 26 May 2021 / Published: 31 May 2021
This systematic review examines the importance of a systems/holistic approach in analyzing and addressing the footprints/impacts of business-as-usual activities regarding the development of a circular economy (CE). Recent works on why current CE approaches have to be examined in terms of reductionist vs. systems perspectives are reviewed to tackle questions pertaining to the right or the wrong way of CE implementation. ‘Doing the right thing right’ is essential for sustainability—the ultimate goal of a CE, which must be viewed as a system to begin with. The limited reductionist approach overlooks and thus cannot prognosticate on the formidable unintended consequences that emerge from ‘doing the right things wrong’, consequences that become too costly to undo. The systems approach, being holistic, is complicated and difficult to pursue but open to exciting opportunities to integrate innovations in CE analysis and implementation. Complexity is an inherent downside of the systems approach. However, both approaches are complementary, as reductionist models can be combined to create a system of comprehensive analysis to correct the approach towards implementation of current CE initiatives. This review reports that advancements in systems analytical frameworks and tools are highly important for creating general guidelines on CE analysis and implementation. View Full-Text
Keywords: reductionist approach; systems thinking; circular economy; systems models; sustainability; holons; unintended outcomes; sustainable development goals; nature-based solutions reductionist approach; systems thinking; circular economy; systems models; sustainability; holons; unintended outcomes; sustainable development goals; nature-based solutions
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MDPI and ACS Style

Balanay, R.; Halog, A. A Review of Reductionist versus Systems Perspectives towards ‘Doing the Right Strategies Right’ for Circular Economy Implementation. Systems 2021, 9, 38. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/systems9020038

AMA Style

Balanay R, Halog A. A Review of Reductionist versus Systems Perspectives towards ‘Doing the Right Strategies Right’ for Circular Economy Implementation. Systems. 2021; 9(2):38. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/systems9020038

Chicago/Turabian Style

Balanay, Raquel, and Anthony Halog. 2021. "A Review of Reductionist versus Systems Perspectives towards ‘Doing the Right Strategies Right’ for Circular Economy Implementation" Systems 9, no. 2: 38. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/systems9020038

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