Intermediating circular startups in ecosystems: a case study of circular textiles and apparel

Research output: Working paper/preprintWorking paperAcademic


We investigate circular entrepreneurial ecosystems that support circular startups and innovation. We argue that circular entrepreneurial ecosystems are constellations of existing entrepreneurial ecosystems that extend across geographies and sectors, requiring ecosystem intermediaries to bridge institutional environments and provide access to actors and resources. Focusing on the emerging circular transition in the textiles and apparel industry, we gathered data from in-depth interviews, field observations, and archival documentation over a seven--year period. Our findings show that circular entrepreneurial ecosystems are purposefully intermediated at a meta level, generating nested and distributed ecosystems. To elucidate circular ecosystem intermediation, we devised a model of system level 5 intermediation that extends the conceptualization of ecologies of system intermediation across geographic and sector boundaries. Our study contributes to the literatures on circular entrepreneurship, circular ecosystems, and ecosystem intermediation as well as provides practical implications for practitioners and policy makers.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
PublisherHogeschool van Amsterdam
Number of pages39
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2023


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