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From linear to circular manufacturing business modelsPurpose - This editorial piece introduces the special issue titled ‘From Linear to Circular Manufacturing Business Models’. Design/methodology/approach - The ‘Background and Motivation’ section provides an overview of the current practical environmental challenges faced by the manufacturing sector, mainly due to the use of linear business models, and it argues the potential benefits of adopting the circular economy concept as a potential solution to address such challenges. This section also exposes the limitations of scholarly research in this field. On the other hand, the ‘Features and Areas of the Special Issue Contributions’ section discusses the themes and related inter-disciplinary topics that were considered in the special issue. Findings - The editorial concludes with a summary of the accepted papers in terms of the specific topics they address and their main contributions to the domain of manufacturing technology management, with specific focus on how circular economy can intervene, support and contribute to deliver more economic, social and environmentally sustainable manufacturing operations and processes, and in this way help to address some of the most critical challenges we are currently confronting as humankind, i.e. environmental degradation. Originality/value - Four articles that characterise good and state-of-the-art research work spans from a variety of leading edge research in the area of circular economy, with particular application in the design, management and improvement of manufacturing operations, processes and technology were selected. These papers illustrate the different practical approaches and theoretical perspectives considered by the authors to effectively use/integrate CE into manufacturing operations and processes.