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Circular Economy Alliance


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In order to make circular economy ideals a reality, we must empower individuals, leaders, and institutions with the skills, tools, and knowledge they’re currently lacking. That’s why the Circular Economy Research Centre (CERC) @ École des Ponts Business School, together with the Circular Economy Alliance (CEA), is embarking on an educational journey with one primary mission in mind: enhance educational efforts to close the gap and ensure a faster transition to a (more) circular economy.

The content of the certification program is driven by recent and emerging research and practice dedicated to transitioning towards a (more) circular economy. We are committed to providing knowledge, education, and awareness through a holistic and systematic approach. As we want to avoid any attempts to use our certification as an instrument of corporate “greenwashing” in any shape or form, we have designed the Body of Knowledge based on research-driven data, advanced analytics, and demonstrable best practices. We see people like you – that is people taking the time to learn more about circular principles in practice – as a crucial part of the shift towards a circular economy. Our certification program aims to be an effective solution to closing the skills gap, driving innovation, increasing employability, as well as spreading sustainable ideals and practices.

Circular Economy Alliance (CEA) and the Circular Economy Research Centre (CERC) have created a unique selection of certifications with one primary goal in mind: to educate workforces quickly and efficiently around the globe for a brighter, more sustainable future. The curriculum is research-driven and incredibly diverse, developed by both organisations and an array of leading experts, contributors, and researchers for maximum impact.

You can freely choose between individual thematic courses “à la carte”, or choose from 3 certification bundles, based on your background, work experience and/or objectives (see “What certification should I choose?” for more information).

Bringing about the transition to a more circular economy requires new knowledge, awareness, and skills that most employees, managers, companies, and institutions just do not have access to yet. Our diverse curriculum and extensive body of knowledge aims at closing that gap with targeted, concise, accessible, and flexible training opportunities.

Our certifications are designed to level up your competency, employability, and promotability, while providing you with the foundational knowledge that can help you be part of the movement towards a more sustainably oriented future. Wherever you prefer – at home, at school, at the office, or on the go – you can expand your understanding, broaden your skillset, and gain valuable certifications for the future, all at your own pace.

Getting certified in Circular Economy is an incredible opportunity for you to harness the latest knowledge, skills, and practices that contribute to creating a greener, brighter future for mankind. It’s ideal for individuals to progress in their careers, employees to significantly increase their skillsets (upskilling) and leaders to implement a circular approach in their business models, operations, and strategies. This is your chance to play an active and informed role in the change you want to see in this world.

After validating your certification, you will possess an advanced understanding of circular economy concepts related to business, governance, and industry. You will be highly aware of the opportunities that circular economies will provide. As a result, you’ll be uniquely placed to promote new business models and lead the transformation process as we move towards a more circular society. The learnings from the various modules will position you as one of the rare individuals equipped to analyse cross-disciplinary and complex problems related to sustainable development, and to ideate, drive and deliver innovative circular solutions. Applying the techniques, knowledge, and tools you will have acquired to identify and implement circular approaches – thus playing an active role in advancing circularity and sustainability.

The primary aim of the certification is to enhance your knowledge of circular economy – wherever that journey begins for you. After accessing our exclusive body of knowledge, you’ll be able to promote the common language of circular principles and join a global community of changemakers driving the transition. If you want a unique competitive edge as we enter a greener future, our certifications are the key to achieving it.

Our Circular Economy certifications are designed to help you develop the knowledge and skills required to drive your career progression and the world around you forward. With your new learnings in tow, you’ll be able to take advantage of new professional opportunities, and explore personal interests, while implementing circular solutions along the way. As a result, you will have the opportunity to be both a thought leader and a leader of change – someone capable of identifying and solving the challenges we face today.

Certification also means that you will get the chance to join a community of like-minded circular economy professionals sharing common values and goals. By sharing experiences, proactively networking, and collaborating effectively with other forward-thinking changemakers, you will be part of something bigger.

You might be wondering which of our certificates will be most suited to your unique requirements. Each certification is made up of different elements of the growing circular body of knowledge, expertly chosen to match varying demands and degrees of experience and expertise.

There are three certification bundles and four certificates on offer for you to choose from:

Certificate of Completion (CoC)

If you would like to do just one chapter to cover specific Circular Economy content our Certificate of Completion is ideal for you. It is for people interested in learning about one specific area of circular economy principles, who are just discovering the subject and would like to understand more before going deeper or, conversely, for those who already have experience and are only interested in learning about very specific aspects of circular economy.

A Certificate of Completion is available for every chapter of the Body of Knowledge (18 chapters at present, with more on the way). Once you validate the chapter you will receive a link to a digital Certificate of Completion, issued in your name on the blockchain, with an option to post it directly to your LinkedIn account, should you desire to.

If you want to upskill, reskill or further your knowledge in a very specific area of circular economy, the Certificate of Completion is right for you.

Certified Circular Economy Professional (CCEP)

Our Certified Circular Economy Professional (CCEP) certificate is designed to help professionals, graduates, and students to better navigate the sustainability landscape. Whether you are new to the domain or looking to substantiate your circular economy credentials, this certificate is right for you. The CCEP is the building block for our more advanced certifications, Circular Economy Expert or Circular Economy Specialist, so it is also the starting point for those looking to be more extensively trained in Circular Economy with market-recognized credentials.

As part of the Circular Economy Professional Certificate program, you’ll get access to the first four chapters of our Body of Knowledge – or what we consider the fundamental “pillars” of Circular Economy. Mastering the terminology and key principles of Circular Economy is ideal for anyone interested in more sustainable approaches to business. In a word, you will discover how decoupling economic growth from resource use, eliminating waste, and reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 can be readily achieved with more circular ecosystems.

After completing the CCEP, you will feel empowered with a wide range of knowledge and skills to enhance your career opportunities in the domain. So, if you are looking to develop a sound understanding of circular economy business principles and understand how to implement them for maximum impact, the CCEP is the right place to start.

Certified Circular Economy Expert (CCEE)

Our Certified Circular Economy Expert (CCEE) certificate is intended to advance the knowledge and skills of professionals, across a broad spectrum of sectors, in circular economy advanced frameworks, principles, and practices. As the second level of certification, the CCEE builds on and complements the 4 courses of the Certified Circular Economy Professional certificate. Delivered as a cross-disciplinary exploration of circular economy principles, this certification includes both core and advanced modules. You’ll gain a deeper understanding of what’s wrong with our legacy take-make-dispose systems and outdated linear thinking, the challenges we need to address today to ensure a brighter tomorrow, while learning how to design profitable and practical circular solutions. Overall, it will enhance your ability to play the role of change-maker, to spot gaps where impactful business transformation can be implemented, and to make a lasting positive impact.

Certified Circular Economy Specialist (CCES)

Our Certified Circular Economy Specialist (CCES) certificate is our most in-depth certification option. The CCES builds on the four CCEP courses, the four CCEE modules, and allows you to choose an additional four courses from the entire Body of Knowledge (18 chapters at launch, with new chapters added regularly) based on your practice and/or desired area of specialisation.

The CCES is ideal for learners who are already familiar with Circular Economy, have some experience in the field, and are ready to go “all in” to help accelerate the transition to a more circular economy. In addition to core and advanced courses, you can choose from a wide array of adjacent Circular Economy subjects to position yourself as a credible and credentialed expert at the forefront of this rapidly-growing domain.

Once certified, you will have a comprehensive view of the Circular Economy Body of Knowledge, understanding the full implications of the systemic thinking and expertise that is necessary to accelerate the transition. While strengthening your ability to manage the magnitude and pace of transition, you’ll discover how to make a meaningful and long-lasting impact not only on your own work but also on the work and lives of the many.

If you want to unlock the mindset, tools, and skills required to lead the transition and put circular economy concepts into practice, the CCES is the certification for you.

All our certifications are validated by successfully completing a randomized multiple-choice timed examination at the end of each course, that tests to what extent you have retained and assimilated the learnings. A minimum score of 70% is required to validate each course. As soon as you’ve completed the examination, your results will be visible on the screen.

Whether or not you are particularly good at examinations, the format has been created in a way that’s very accessible, very straightforward (no sneaky tricks or ambiguous language), and only covers the course content you have just reviewed.

To help prepare you for the exam, after each section, in each course, you will be presented with a brief context-specific “challenge”. Each challenge is a brief non-graded knowledge check question that helps you assimilate the learnings and prepare you for the final randomized 10-question multiple-choice exam you will be presented with at the end of the module.

After completing each exam, your results will become immediately available in your learning dashboard (in the Talent Learning Management System). All exams have been specifically designed to test how much of the learnings you have retained and assimilated. A minimum score of 70% is required to validate each course. If you fail to achieve a score of 70% or more, you will be given the option to retake the test two more times at no extra cost.

Rest assured, the exam format has been designed in a way that is very accessible, straightforward (there are no sneaky tricks or ambiguous language) and each exam only covers the specific module content you have just reviewed. We do suggest that you take the exam immediately after completing the module content to ensure it is still fresh in your mind.

After three failed attempts, if you wish to try again, you can pay an additional administrative fee of €45 to have another chance to retake the exam.

That said, we understand tests aren’t easy for everyone. If you have a learning handicap, or other challenges related to test-taking, please contact our team at and we will try to accommodate you accordingly.

Our certifications have been designed for anyone and everyone to complete at their own pace. We estimate that one course can be completed in one week, despite working or studying full time. We understand that you won’t always know how your schedule might look ahead of time or how much time you’ll be able to dedicate to your certification. That’s why our certification schedules are incredibly flexible, allowing you to complete the courses faster or take more time to complete. We do suggest that you take the respective exam immediately after completing the content of each course. However, all courses can be validated up to 12 months after initial registration. That said, the sooner you finish, the sooner you can get certified, the sooner you can start changing the world for the better!

Certification is valid for one calendar year. You will receive a personal and unique link to a digital certificate, in your name. After this initial period, maintaining active certification status requires maintaining active Circular Economy Alliance (CEA) membership which is renewed annually with a predefined fee for 2022 to be set at €50.  The fee is subject to annual revisions which will be communicated to the users with the renewal communication launched prior to the expiration date of their certification. All Circular Economy Alliance Certified Members will need to report on an annual basis their contribution to the development of the domain and the profession in the format of CPEs.

If, for whatever reason, you decide not to renew your certification and maintain your active CEA Community status, your certification will expire. As we drive the transition to a circular economy forward, it’s vital that our global community of certified professionals keep their knowledge as fresh as possible. By renewing your membership each year, you will maintain your access to the rapidly expanding knowledge and practices relative to the Circular Economy, as well as exclusive benefits and opportunities to further your circular skillset for the future.

Following successful registration for any of the Circular Economy Alliance’s certifications, you will be automatically registered as an active member of the global CEA Community.

As a certified member, you can expect to:

  • Receive regular updates and access to new resources and research
  • Get exclusive invites to community events, conferences, presentations, and workshops
  • Access relevant networking opportunities
  • Receive early bird and loyalty discounts on all future educational and training products developed by CEA and CERC @ École des Ponts Business School

CEA and CERC are committed to updating the circular economy curriculum and our Body of Knowledge in line with the emerging developments in the field. As a certified member, you will be notified of these changes to help you to keep your circular economy expertise up to date.

Only individuals with a valid certification status will be identified as active members of the registered global Circular Economy Alliance Community. Annual membership is included with the initial certification fee for one year, and thereafter there is an annual membership fee of €50 to maintain active certification and member status.  Despite many requests, we do not intend to accept external, that is non-certified professionals, as part of the global CEA Community, at this time.  Maintenance of certification only applies to the CCEP, CCEE and CCES and not to the Certificate of Completion that is issued for individual chapters of the Body of Knowledge. Members should also note that there is no requirement to retake any assessment or examination, except in the event that you allow your membership and certification to expire for more than one calendar year without renewal.

As collaboration is a key principle of circular economy, we are always open to new partnership opportunities and approaches that can add value to our community and help grow the ecosystem. As a global network of professionals passionate about Circular -Economy and Sustainable Development, we’re always looking to expand our community with companies and organisations that share our principles and values.

To join our alliance and make your mark, please register to create a profile and then apply to become a member of our valued community. We will rapidly contact you to see how we can work together to further pursue the circular economy agenda and/or train the people in your organisation most effectively.

As collaboration is a key principle of circular economy, we are always open to new partnership opportunities and approaches that can add value to our Community and help to grow the ecosystem. If you’d like to partner with us to enhance your impact, you’re welcome to get in touch. We will invite you to be one of the growing numbers of companies and organizations that have signed a Memorandum of Collaboration in order to be actively involved in the very necessary transition to a more Circular Economy.  Engaging in a Memorandum of Collaborations bears significant benefits for your organisation given that it unlocks preferential corporate rates for collective institutional training, prominent display on our website, business opportunities as well as research opportunities. For more information reach out to us at the following e-mail

If you’d like to stay in the loop about the latest circular economy news, it is as easy as subscribing to our newsletter. We will appear in your inbox regularly, but not too frequently, with circular economy news, updates on our actions and events, and, more globally, on the progress in the transition to a more circular economy around the globe. Subscribe to our newsletter here

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