The Growing Strategic Importance of End-of-Life Product Management

by Michael Toffel



Requiring manufacturers to manage their products when they become waste is an innovative form of regulation, one that has been adopted by countries in Asia, Europe, and North America on a variety of products that range from vehicles to appliances to batteries. However, even in many unregulated industries, some manufacturers are voluntarily assuming more responsibility for their end-of-life products, driven by customer demand and cost efficiencies. This article explores various forms of take-back regulation and highlights some of the key features of the institutions that emerge in response. In addition, it presents seven strategic product recovery alternatives, followed by a discussion of some factors managers should consider in developing a take-back strategy.

California Management Review

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Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

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