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Dr Stijn Van Ewijk
Gower Street
Dr Stijn Van Ewijk profile picture
  • Lecturer in Environmental Engineering
  • Dept of Civil, Environ &Geomatic Eng
  • Faculty of Engineering Science

Stijn (pronounced "Stine") studies how modern societies use materials and energy, and the complex interactions between the environment, economy, and society. Stijn focuses specifically on technologies and policies for sustainable waste management and the circular economy. Previously, Stijn was a Postdoctoral Associate at the Yale Center for Industrial Ecology and a Research Associate at UCL. He was a visiting researcher at the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra).

Research Summary

Industrial Ecology and Policy

Stijn is building a research group on industrial ecology and policy. The group seeks to understand how public policy shapes the use of materials and energy in society. The methods include material flow analysis (MFA), life cycle assessment (LCA), techno-economic modelling, and policy analysis. The group work across disciplines and in collaboration with industry and policymakers to investigate government interventions that support the transition towards a sustainable circular economy.

Recent and current projects

  • Techno-economic modelling of paper recycling
  • The role of life cycle thinking in public policy
  • Allocation methods for emissions accounting in aviation
  • Non-hazardous waste generation in the U.S.
  • Best practices for material flow analysis of waste

PhD students

Chi Zhang. Thesis topic: Decision-making for end-of-life construction timber in a circular economy.


The group collaborates with academics across UCL and internationally.

  •  UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources
  •  UCL Centre for Resource Efficiency and the Environment
  •  UCL Circular Economy Lab (CircEL)
  •  Yale University, Center for Industrial Ecology

Selected publications

  • Van Ewijk, S., Stegemann, J.A. & Ekins, P. (2020). Limited climate benefits of global recycling of pulp and paper. Nature Sustainability
  • Van Ewijk, S. & McDowall, M. (2020). Diffusion of flue gas desulphurisation reveals barriers and opportunities for carbon capture and storage. Nature Communications.
  • Van Ewijk, S. & Stegemann, J.A. (2020). Recognising waste use potential as a guiding principle for the circular economy. Waste Management.

In the media

Ars Technica. Does paper recycling benefit the climate? It depends

Mic.com. Styrofoam, pizza boxes, bubble wrap: How to handle the most confusing “recyclable” items

The Conversation. Why we’ll still need waste in acircular economy


Please get in touch if you are interested in pursuing an interdisciplinary PhD (or MSc project) that covers one or more of the following themes: industrial ecology, material flow analysis, life cycle assessment, waste management, circular economy, public policy.

01-JAN-2019 – 31-DEC-2021 Postdoctoral Associate Center for Industrial Ecology Yale University, United States
01-JAN-2018 – 30-SEP-2019 Research Associate Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering University College London, United Kingdom
01-FEB-2016 – 30-APR-2016 Visiting Researcher Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) UK Government, United Kingdom
Academic Background
2019   ATQ03 - Recognised by the HEA as a Fellow University College London
2018   PhD Sustainable Resources and Engineering University College London
2017   ATQ02 - Recognised by the HEA as an Associate Fellow University College London
2013   MSc Sustainable Energy Technology, MSc Public Administration University of Twente, The Netherlands
2011   Bachelor of Science University of Twente, The Netherlands
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