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Special Issue "Phosphorus Circular Economy: Closing Loops through Sustainable Innovation"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Engineering and Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Gerald Steiner

1. Department of Knowledge and Communication Management, Danube-University Krems, Dr. Karl-Dorrek-Straße 30, 3500 Krems, Austria
2. Weatherhead Center for International Affairs (WCFIA), Harvard University, 1737 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +43-(0)2732-893-2313
Interests: sustainability-oriented innovation systems/-processes; sustainable resource management; phosphate rock mining; organizational and regional innovation systems; organizational communication
Guest Editor
Mr. Bernhard Geissler

Department for Knowledge and Communication Management, Danube University Krems, Dr.-Karl-Dorrek-Straße 30, 3500 Krems, Austria
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +43-(0)2732-893-2329
Interests: global food security; sustainable phosphate rock mining and management; efficiency and performance benchmarking; operations research; closed-loop supply chain management

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The necessary optimization of the predominately complex supply chain requires inevitable understanding of the underlying system dynamics; this holds especially true for the unique characteristics of phosphorus. The finiteness of the primary source phosphate rock requires a transdisciplinary approach in order to generate, utilize, and transfer knowledge between stakeholders. On its own, no discipline will be able to solve the underlying problems of future P supply, therefore, we aim to include the overall supply chain, from extraction, mining, processing, to the use phase. Recycling holds an exceptional position since it is of greater importance for closing potential loops. Therefore, unlike previous works, we will not focus solely on the recycling of sewage sludges, as previous studies show enormous potential, especially during mining and beneficiation processes. Furthermore, we want to emphasize the interrelations between the single phases of the supply chain, particularly the role of market prices and the role of technology which both leading to often unconsidered underlying dynamics. From our perspective innovation will be a key element for technological developments, prices of raw materials and intermediates, and, most importantly, for closing loops all along the supply chain.

Prof. Dr. Gerald Steiner
Mr. Bernhard Geissler
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • sustainable phosphorus management
  • closed-loop supply chains
  • transdisciplinarity
  • efficiency
  • circular economy
  • innovation

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
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