Workshop with Walter Stahel: Exploiting the business models of the performance economy

On Wednesday, 20. of June, we had joy to welcome Walter Stahel in Vienna for our workshop “Exploiting the business models of the Performance Economy”.

Walter Stahel is a specialist for strategy- and policy advice for a sustainable society. In 1976 he sketched his vision of an economy in loops (or circular economy) and its impact on job creation, economic competitiveness, resource savings and waste prevention in his research report ‘The Potential for Substituting Manpower for Energy’ to the European Commission. Since 2012 he is a full member of the Club of Rome and Member of the Coordination Group of the European Circular Economy Stakeholder Platform.


Walter is furthermore founder and director of the not-for-profit organization, the Product-Life Institute in Geneva. It aims to demonstrate the possibilities of economic development towards a Performance Economy (PE) or Functional Service Economy.


The workshop started with an introduction about sustainability and a Circular Industrial Economy and the societal and economic benefits which come along with it.


Subsequently, Walter introduced us to the basic idea behind the concept of a PE. This means selling services instead of goods. It includes that companies who provide a service ensure that their products are made of good quality and are very durable in order to reach their break-even point. So, the companies are economically better off if they are providing goods which are designed to last long.

After two hours we had a break with snacks and the participants had the possibility to exchange on the input we got from Water Stahel. After the break it continued with really lively debates, interesting inputs from the participants and insightful comments from Walter Stahel. He complemented his argumentations always with up-to-date examples out of the global economy which made the workshop very interesting and informative.

Thank you all for participating!