• Logo CIRCO
  • Program info

    • Title: CIRCO
    • What: circular business and design
    • Input: CLICKNL is the lead agency for this program. The program operates independently with its own executive team.
    • Duration: 2015 – present
    • Key words: product design, system and process design
    • Project partners: CIRCO, CLICKNL, Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management
    • Website: www.circonl.nl


CIRCO - creating business through circular design

'Creating business through circular design'
The circular economy will not create itself. CIRCO is focusing on setting a new market in motion. With help from the government, CIRCO is therefore motivating entrepreneurs and creative professionals to (re)design products, services and business models in alignment with circular entrepreneurship. In doing so, it’s also contributing to long-term solutions to social problems.

As a programme of CLICKNL, CIRCO is motivating production companies, circular entrepreneurs and creative professionals to get started with circular design in (more) concrete terms. By (re)designing products, services and business models, circular entrepreneurship becomes possible in many cases. CIRCO has developed a, now proven, method for this. More than 1,400 companies and 650 (industrial) designers have now been trained in the Netherlands and internationally.

The current global economy is based on a linear model, in which primary raw materials that are in short supply are used and products made from those raw materials quickly end up as useless waste. Instead, we must move toward a circular model, in which raw materials can be reused. By designing products more efficiently and consciously and reusing materials as much as possible, little or no waste remains. A circular economy also offers opportunities for new revenue models, based on value retention. The development of new value starts with entrepreneurs, among others. A design approach can help them to come to innovative circular products, services and business models.

The key to the success of the CIRCO method is the combination of design and business


The proven method developed by CIRCO consists of Circular Business Design Tracks for entrepreneurs and one-day Circular Design Classes for creative professionals. The Track is a workshop series in which entrepreneurs are introduced to the possibilities of circular business and design, they explore opportunities for their own business and take concrete steps toward developing new products, services and business models. In the design class, creative professionals learn how they can contribute to the development of the circular economy, while generating new business themselves. They also practice together the concrete application of circular design and gain insight into their role in realizing circular products and services.

Tracks and Classes are offered by CIRCO Hubs, industry associations and intermediaries.
CIRCO focuses on different sectors: construction, plastics, consumer goods, industrial design/industrial design and manufacturing.