Creating fundamental changes in complex systems like the textile industry is a tremendous design challenge that requires collaboration between stakeholders across different sectors of society. The multi-level perspective (MLP) is a popular theoretical framework that conceptualizes such system changes as dynamic processes that happen through the interaction between three analytical levels: the socio-technical regime, the socio-technical landscape, and the level of niche innovations (Markard et al., 2012). Much of past research using the MLP has focused on transitions where the changes have centred around a single innovation, for example, electric vehicles, heat pumps, or wind turbines. However, less attention has been paid to transitions that involve dynamic interactions between multiple emerging niche innovations and the existing socio-technical regime (Köhler et al., 2019). My research aims to remedy this gap by conducting an in-depth case study of the Finnish textile industry, where new policies, business models, material innovations, and supply chain practices are currently emerging around the concept of the circular economy. This short paper briefly presents the empirical context of my research, the scholarly conversation that I hope to contribute to, and my research plan as it currently stands. I invite feedback particularly on my theoretical grounding and research design.
Keywords: sustainability transition, multi-level perspective, circular economy, textile industry
Paper will be updated soon.