Assessing circular economy in Brazilian industries through the analytical hierarchy process




circularity index; circularity levels; circularity measurement; sustainable development.


Sustainable development has been pursued by organizations around the world ever since environmental and social issues were introduced into institutional agendas. In the various sectors of the economy, the factors that influence sustainable decisions are multidisciplinary and systemic, and address the concept of Circular Economy (CE). This study aimed to develop a method to measure the level of commitment of companies and sectors to CE. The method allows investigating institutional factors associated with sustainable development and assessing the depth of CE practices. A circularity index is originated that can assist decision makers in the development of specific strategies, investment plans, and policies to guide organizations towards the achievement of a CE. The proposed method was then applied to 75 Brazilian companies recognized for their sustainability initiatives, analyzing practices associated with CE actions, as well as their depth. The results, using the Analytic Hierarchical Process (AHP), indicate that the sectors analyzed do not have a significant difference among them and that the majority of the companies analyzed (80%) do not practice any circular action despite claiming the opposite. Therefore, CE is still incipient in Brazil. The application of the proposed method to a large sample showed its potential for global use, and that it can also be employed to guide actions of single companies or entire sectors towards sustainable development using a CE path.


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How to Cite

Gomes, P. R., Carstens, L., Vilas-Boas, M. C., Kauling, M. F., Cruz, S. T., & Dziedzic, M. (2022). Assessing circular economy in Brazilian industries through the analytical hierarchy process. Revista Brasileira De Ciências Ambientais (RBCIAMB), 57(2), 194–205.