Elen Macarthur Foundation




The Foundation works across three interlinking areas:

Inspiring and enabling learners to apply contemporary science (systems thinking) to the challenge of building a circular economy and reflecting this opportunity to their lives, skills and futures. By leveraging the power of online learning to connect people and break down educational barriers across the world, the Foundation is creating a global teaching and learning platform built around the circular economy framework. With an emphasis on online learning we aim to provide cutting edge insight and content to support circular economy education. This work runs alongside a Pioneer University Network and Fellowship Programme, focusing on fostering academic research and teaching with partners in Europe, the US, India, China and South America.

Since its launch in September 2010, the Foundation has placed an emphasis on the real-world relevance of its activities. The Foundation understands that business innovation sits at the heart of any transition to the circular economy. The Foundation works with its Global Partners (Cisco, Philips, Renault, Kingfisher and Unilever) to address major challenges in accelerating the transition to the circular economy. In February 2013, with the support of its Global Partners, the Foundation created the world’s first dedicated circular economy innovation programme. The Circular Economy 100 comprises a group of industry leading corporations, emerging innovators (SMEs) and regions. The programme provides a unique forum for businesses to build circular capabilities, address common barriers to progress and pilot circular practices in a collaborative environment.

The Foundation works to quantify the economic potential of the circular model and develop approaches for capturing this value. Working together with its Knowledge Partner, McKinsey & Company, the Foundation has created a series of economic reports highlighting the rationale for an accelerated transition towards the circular economy. The Foundation believes the circular economy is an evolving framework and continues to widen its understanding by working with a network of international experts including key circular economy thinkers and leading academics. These external experts feed into the key programmes that we run as well as contributing to our growing body of reports, resources, case studies and publications.

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Project MainStream launches three new...
23rd January 2015 – Today sees Project MainStream launch a new project outline containing three programmes ...
Download the DIF 2014 Report
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Re-thinking Progress, save the date: ...
12th January 2015 – The Ellen MacArthur Foundation is pleased to reveal the dates for our second Re-thinkin...
Our year in review, by Ellen MacArthur
5th January 2015 – Read about our highlights and milestones in 2014 at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

The Economics

The first macroeconomic report series into the size of the prize for business in the transition to a circular economy


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Resource downloads

Film clips, publications, colour graphics, presentations…raw material for a range of educational activities.


Global Partners of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation

Circular Economy 100 Members