Evidencing the waste effect of Product-Service Systems (PSSs)

Hervé Corvellec, Herman Stål

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This paper adopts a waste-centric analysis of Product-Service Systems (PSSs) to demonstrate that they do not automatically contribute to a dematerialization of the economy, a decoupling of production from material and energy consumption, and thus a transition toward sustainability. A qualitative analysis of various Nordic fashion PSSs that uses a combination of Tukker’s (2004) classification of PSSs and the European waste hierarchy model demonstrates that the waste effect of a PSS is independent of its being product-oriented, use-oriented, or result-oriented. Rather, the effect depends on how the business model of the PSS organizes material flows at production, distribution, use, and post-consumption stages in relationship to prevailing waste regimes where the PSS operates. We suggest that if a PSS is to reduce its waste effect and contribute to dematerialization, its business model should design material flows that fit with the prevailing waste regimes within the area it operates and prioritize waste prevention before considering reuse, recycling, energy recovery, and landfilling.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-24
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 7

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
  • Environmental Management


  • Product-Service System (PSS)
  • Fashion
  • Waste
  • Dematerialization
  • Sustainability
  • European Waste Hierarchy


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