Circular Economy: An Interdisciplinary Approach
Do you want to contribute to a more sustainable society? Tackle the challenges in the transition towards a circular economy? In this course you will analyse what it takes to create a circular economy including sustainable supply chains.
The transition towards a circular economy is one of the biggest challenges in order to create a more sustainable society. This transition requires circular thinking and an interdisciplinary approach, combining socio-technical, managerial, and environmental considerations.
Who should attend?
To optimally learn in/from and complete the complete MicroMasters Program we expect you to have a bachelor degree in social sciences (preferably business-, or economics). However, there is no formal entry level requirement for this MOOC.
Introduction to the Circular Economy
In this module, we will investigate how the circular economy is defined, how it deviates from the current so-called "linear" system and how it relates to other sustainable schools of thought. At the end of this module, we hope you will have learned the main principles of the circular economy and the reasons to invest in a transition towards a circular economy.
Circular Systems Engineering
In this module, we will introduce you to the concept of systems thinking. A systematic approach to problems and situations is necessary when dealing with complex systems. In addition to implementing this way of thinking, engineering solutions are also needed when closing cycles. At the end of this module, you will know how to apply systems thinking when analysing and transitioning to circularity, and have learned some interesting examples of engineering solutions.
In this module, we will discuss how circular changes come about within companies and society. What is needed for businesses to successfully transition towards circularity? What are some useful skills you can develop yourself to help transform industries and your own environment?
Life Cycle Assessment (LCA)
In this module, you will learn about the strengths and weaknesses of LCA, and how it can be used to quantify the environmental impact of circular products. After completion of this module, you'll understand the principles of LCA and know what questions LCA can answer.
Agent Based Modelling (ABM)
Agent Based Modelling is a tool that can be very useful when researching circular economy situations. In this module, you will learn what ABM is, how it works and when it can be applied. You don't have to learn how to program code yourself - but if you want to, you can.
The last module contains a case study, in which you will apply everything you have learnt so far.
Course delivery details
This course is offered through Wageningen University & Research, a partner institute of EdX.
16-24 hours per week
- Verified Track -$149
- Audit Track - Free
Certification / Credits
What you'll learn
- Understand the concept of a circular economy
- Understand how a circular economy deviates from the current linear system
- Analyse and develop complex circular systems using a systems thinking approach
- Assess the use of Life Cycle Assessment and Agent Based Modelling
- Formulate improvements for a transition towards a circular design
- Learn how to use and apply complexity aspects agent-based modelling
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