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Ecological modernization and its discontents: The American environmental movement's resistance to an innovation-driven future

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Abstract

Ecological modernization provides a theoretical framework for situating the emergence of new technology-intensive modes of environmental reform such as industrial ecology, environmentally conscious manufacturing, and ecological design. These forms of professional engineering practice all seek to exploit opportunities for aggressive innovation to achieve rigorous improvements in the environmental performance of industrial processes and consumer goods. Despite the potential of this approach, the American environmental movement has not offered much active support. This reticence is attributable to the historical development of organized environmentalism in the United States and its general tendency to privilege the interests of landscape and wildlife protection over concerns about public health and industrial pollution. There also exists within major segments of the country's environmental movement an inertia that stems from an institutionalized preference for litigation and lobbying and a wariness about technologically intensive policy programs. Novel initiatives launched by Environmental Defense and the Natural Resources Defense Council over the past decade however provide some instructive lessons for coming to terms with a more innovation-driven future.

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... They are not consistent with ecological modernizations opinions and this should be an issue of making great performance based on slim environmental criteria. Rather let there be a full implementation and integration of environmental consideration in the process plan (Cohen, 2000;Cohen, 2006). The Germans have suffered some environmental disasters like environmental degradation, floods, droughts, the overuse of land and air pollution. ...
... It may not be seen that the term itself has failed to catch on, but also that core values associated with the idea, particularly the global justice aspect have failed to gain even formal political acceptance. At the national level, US environmental policy remains largely cold in the conservationist, regulation/compliance, industry versusenvironmentalists, and pollution clean-up patterns that took shape either prior to or during the 1970s (Dunlap and Mertig,1992;Cohen, 2006). ...
... Since ecological modernization is not taken very serious in the country policymaking bodies, most American environmental movement due to their anxiety of legislative and legalistic matters has also failed to develop good interest. However the US was more interested in conservation, preservation, and wildlife management because the vast majority (93%) of these diverse groups are rooted in landscape and wildlife protection while 7% of all environmental organizations in the United States comprises groups are dedicated to reform environmentalism, environmental justice, and anti-pollution (Dowie, 1995;Cohen, 2006). For example American motormanufacturers began to install catalytic converters on their fleets in the 1970s in reaction to increasingly protective environmental laws. ...
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How Ecological modernisation can solve the problem of Oil Pollution in the Niger Delta of Nigeria.
... Finding solutions to environmental threats requires new relationships between society and nature that will drive the economic actors towards more sustainable pathways. Environmental challenges tend, nonetheless, to be viewed exclusively as constraints to human activity -although they can present great opportunities for economic and social prosperity [6,7]. Fostering a better relationship between industrial activities and natural resources can create win/win situations for both economic and environmental performance. ...
... Fostering a better relationship between industrial activities and natural resources can create win/win situations for both economic and environmental performance. According to Cohen [6], society should pursue these new technological paths by exploiting opportunities for innovation to enhance the environmental performance of industrial processes. Evans [7] went further, presenting that companies are increasingly striving to deliver value when product development is constantly under pressure across their entire value chain; and, in this scenario, considerations beyond economic return should be considered both to mitigate risks and to create opportunities to innovate. ...
Conference Paper
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This paper presents eco-innovation as the means of harmonizing economic activities with environmental resilience. Several agents and factors are involved with generation and diffusion of eco-innovations; nevertheless, the role performed by the state, as an inducer of eco-innovation, is crucial. Little is known about the role played by governments in promoting eco-innovations. This work investigates the influence of regulations in generating eco-innovation in Brazil, through a statistical analysis originated by an unprecedented survey carried out with 98 Brazilian enterprises. Results suggest that regulations are keen on promoting organizational and process innovations, with incremental impacts and internalizing environmental externalities that are no longer tolerable by the government. A high number of regulatory-pushed eco-innovations were generated using economic mechanisms, such as funding and subsidies and came out of cooperative arrangements, mostly with suppliers. Regulations could also be influencing high-impact eco-innovations, opening up opportunities to suppliers of cleaner products and services.
... By encouraging flexible and precautionary governmental and industrial strategies, society is able to spur green innovations and continuous improvements towards environmentally-friendly technological trajectories. These new technological paths should be pursued through exploiting opportunities for innovation to enhance environmental performance of industrial processes, and modernity is seen as a new phase of civilization, in which a superindustrialization is organized around sophisticated environmental technologies (Cohen, 2006). ...
... Porter and van der Linde (1995), however, introduced a different perspective to this matter by claiming that environmental regulations force firms to innovate and improve resource efficiency and productivity. Regulations would therefore increase turnover and profits (Porter and Linde;1995;Bernauer et al.;2006;Belin et al.;2009). ...
Conference Paper
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The recognition of global-scale environmental threats gained room into international discussions since the second half of the 20th century, and with it much attention goes to how businesses address their environmental concerns. This paper draws a map of eco-innovative activities within Brazilian firms, their motivations, processes and results, based on data from an unprecedented survey carried out with 98 Brazilian firms in 2012. The purpose of the paper is to describe the profile of firms according to their approaches to eco-innovation; in special, we want to highlight what factors contribute to the occurrence of radical eco-innovations. Besides a descriptive analysis of the outcomes of the survey, this study used a PROBIT econometric model in order to test what determinants of eco-innovation improve the probability of having a radical outcome of the innovation. Results show that market-driven regulatory determinants, along with R&D activities focused on environmental outcomes increase the probability of radical innovations to take place. Two main conclusions are worth stressing: first, that radical eco-innovations take place in firms with a focused strategy to attend a specific niche market of technological innovations. By providing alternatives to the existing technology and production methods, those firms will make possible the transition towards a new paradigm of production, in a greener, carbon free economy. Second, the regulatory push seems to be helping create markets for the new, environmentally beneficial technologies or products, and should therefore be strengthened in order to allow an even broader dissemination of greener production practices.
... According to Cohen (2006), society should pursue these new technological paths by exploiting opportunities for innovation to enhance the environmental performance of industrial processes. Then, modernization could become a new phase of civilization, and super-industrialization would be organized around sophisticated environmental technologies (Cohen, 2006). ...
... According to Cohen (2006), society should pursue these new technological paths by exploiting opportunities for innovation to enhance the environmental performance of industrial processes. Then, modernization could become a new phase of civilization, and super-industrialization would be organized around sophisticated environmental technologies (Cohen, 2006). ...
Conference Paper
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Eco-innovations are fundamental to redefine the environmental impacts of productive activities towards a new paradigm of sustainable development. Yet, still little is known about how eco-innovations take place in firms, especially in emerging economies like Brazil. The purpose of this chapter is to portrait the landscape of eco-innovations in Brazilian firms, concerning the characteristics of eco-innovators, as well as the determinants, results, types of innovation, main environmental initiatives what cooperative arrangements take place for the development of eco-innovations. It presents the results of an unprecedented survey on eco-innovative activities in Brazilian firms carried out in 2012. The methodology is quantitative, descriptive and explanatory, using precise measurement to provide a representative picture of eco-innovations in Brazil. The results show that firms are mostly driven by the opportunity to create new businesses with their eco-innovations. Moreover, it reveals that most ecoinnovative firms in our sample conduct systematic, in-house R&D activities; most ecoinnovative firms participate in cooperative arrangements for innovation especially with universities and research institutes; and most eco-innovations are organizational, with incremental impacts.
... In this perspective, market forces, tax regimes, environmental groups, will push for a technological innovation that considers environmental impact as a primary factor, thereby improving its environmental efficiency. Those scholars also argue that modern societies have the ability to reach the benefits of long-term environmental sustainability without changing the principle of today's social structures and 1 Mol and Spaargaren 2002;Cohen 2006;Schlosberg and Rinfret 2008, among others. processes. ...
Thesis
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The new challenge that society is facing and will face in the coming years is undoubtedly that of climate change and the transition towards greener energy consumption. The production and consumption of energy through fossil fuels is the major cause of the environmental crisis that is much discussed today. To this end, production and consumption choices are undergoing, and will undergo, a change towards the green sector. Academic but also popular discourses about the environment, sometimes consider technology as having universal power to solve global problems: nowadays societies can develop more efficient and greener technology than the previous generation ones, providing for reduced use and waste of resources. Such a view also recognizes that market forces, as well as government policies, can play an important role in making these technologies widely available, thus solving the environmental problem (Bonds and Downey 2012; Salleh 2012). The transition toward greener models of consumption has also been defined as a new industrial revolution, with a substantial difference from the others: it will counteract global warming (Krupp and Horn 2008). These points of view are shared by different scholars, who see technology at the heart of ecological modernization (Huber 2008). In this perspective, market forces, tax regimes, environmental groups, will push for a technological innovation that considers environmental impact as a primary factor, thereby improving its environmental efficiency. Those scholars also argue that modern societies have the ability to reach the benefits of long-term environmental sustainability without changing the principle of today’s social structures and processes. Thus, for them, even if green technologies are mainly developed and commercialized in industrial countries, will benefit the entire globe universally. However, these discourses do not take into account that green technologies are also commodities, and as such are part of the sometimes contradictory dynamics of capitalism. Taken from the world-system perspective, even if these technologies have the possibility to improve the well-being of the planet, they still are commodities, thus they are part of the social relationship between center and periphery, that is, between rich and developed countries and relatively poor and undeveloped countries (Bonds and Downey 2012). As argued by Bunker (1984), the economic development of the center is possible through the underdevelopment of the periphery, which means that the social and environmental costs for the development of core countries are displaced in the peripheral ones. In summary, this means that although the widespread development of green technologies may create real benefits in core countries, it may also cause further environmental degradation, violence, and social disruption in peripherical areas. Like other commodities, also green technologies rely on global production and consumption, and therefore also their value chains are featured by cases of ecological unequal exchange (Bonds and Downey 2012). Given the numerous scientific studies and agreements such as the Paris Climate Agreement, which affirm the need to keep global warming within 1.5 degrees of pre-industrial levels, the direction toward new, more sustainable forms of energy consumption is certainly the right one. However, up to now, the solutions that address this issue once again follow the capitalist model, also re-proposing its problems, especially the unequal exchange. In order to debate these dynamics from an empirical perspective, in this thesis has been chosen an emblematic case in the unequal exchange framework: the cobalt of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This material is used not only in the most common consumer electronics such as smartphones, tablets, computers, but also for green technologies like electric vehicles. Nevertheless, those who benefit from the technologies that cobalt will implement are exclusively developed countries. Peripheral countries, in this case the Democratic Republic of the Congo, is excluded from this technological progress and considered as a mere extractor of raw materials. This means that green technologies are far from being universal, producing different results for countries depending on their “position” in the world-system. The world economic system works in such a way that core countries have a privileged position, which allows them to obtain raw materials from peripheral countries for their own uses. This is how even the ecological transition risks becoming a way for developed countries to maintain and strengthen their status quo. A real solution in this perspective should follow other patterns and not reflect the problematic dynamics of capitalism, which means fostering the access of green technologies also to peripheral areas through which the implementation of such technologies is possible (Callaway 2018). Following the old center-periphery pattern could not only thwart the efforts to improve the well-being of the planet but also risk to further exacerbating the gap between developed and undeveloped countries.
... Wright and Kurian (2010, p.400) defined EM as 'a modernistic and technocratic approach to deal with environmental problems by assuming that there is a 'techno-institutional fix' for economic and environmental problems'. EM promotes technologies that make industries sustainable by both preventing and ameliorating environmental damage (Fisher and Freudenburg, 2001;Cohen, 2006;Huber, 2008). The economic imperative of EM provides an important role for market dynamics and economic agents as facilitators of ecological reform (Mol, 2000;Seippel, 2000;Berger, et al., 2001;Huber, 2008). ...
Article
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The application of ecological modernization (EM) (to delink industry growth from environmental damage) to minimize construction waste has not been explored within the construction industry in general, and the New South Wales (NSW) construction industry in particular. This study seeks to identify the drivers of applying EM to construction waste minimisation (CWM) in the industry. Also, to determine the CWM measures that are critical for each of the drivers. A survey was adopted in this study to target stakeholders engaged in the delivery of construction projects in NSW from design to completion. The survey was selected to reach a large number of respondents within a manageable period. A pilot study was conducted to ensure the reliability of the research design before a full-scale data collection was launched. The data from 240 valid responses was analysed using factor analysis, relative importance index and descriptive statistics. The results revealed five important drivers for EM’s application to CWM. These are agents of change, government policies, supply chain dynamics, skill-building and technological innovations. The CWM measures that are critical for each of these drivers were also identified. The study provides insights into the application of EM to address the construction industry problem of waste generation as by-product of its growth. It also shows the ability to protect the environment while enabling continuous economic growth. Furthermore, it demonstrates the applicability of EM to minimize the construction waste of NSW construction industry.
... 2000 120 3 Cohen [49] "Despite the dilemmas that ecological modernization holds for the American environmental movement, there are indications that some groups have begun to embrace industrial ecology, environmentally conscious manufacturing, and other related modes of professional practice." ...
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Although industrial activity has brought about rapid economic growth, it also faces the dual challenges of resource constraints and environmental pressure. Industrial ecology (IE) and ecological modernization (EM) are two theories regarding the conceptualization and implementation of sustainable development that emerged from the natural and social sciences, respectively. Over the past three decades, scholars have conducted copious amounts of theoretical and applied research on IE and EM, but comparative studies from an interdisciplinary perspective on the relationship between the two remain relatively rare. On the basis of a bibliometric analysis, this study offers a comprehensive examination of the background, theoretical connotations, and main content of IE and EM, also exploring the role of both theoretical perspectives in the promotion of sustainable industrial development. The findings are fourfold: (1) the research on IE and EM has been increasing year by year, particularly in the past decade; (2) the research is mostly concentrated in developed countries such as the United States and European Union member nations, and contributions from China have increased significantly in recent years; (3) IE has a broader research community than EM and has evolved clearer and more specific research contents and methods; and (4) IE, which analyzes the problems of specific industrial systems, and EM, which constitutes a higher-level institutional policy design, exhibit a trend of cross-fertilization. This study provides a reference for building a more systematic and comprehensive theoretical system of ecological transformation and discusses the future research directions in this field.
... That makes ecological modernization different from "end-of-pipe" environmental management, as it promotes "preventive innovation" (Milanez and Buhrs 2007) instead of remedial solutions (see also Mol 2000;Cohen 2006). It also contrasts with more radical approaches to sustainability that aim at more profound-and more difficult-changes in human behavior or the industrial capitalist system. ...
Chapter
A seemingly inevitable transition to a bioeconomy is underway, raising expectations as well as important social and environmental questions. Climate change, ocean plastic pollution and other ecological issues have made the phase-out of fossil resources an imperative. Still, greater global reliance on biomass alternatives poses as many opportunities as risks. Ensuring that such a transition delivers sustainable development—with the inclusion of marginalized groups, addressing inequalities, and eradicating poverty in line with the Sustainable Development Goals rather than aggravating these problems—is a daunting task, yet a fundamental one. For that, more attention is needed on governance, on the political dynamics that have steered bioeconomy promotion, and on the often-overlooked social dimensions of sustainability. This introductory chapter discusses the concept of bioeconomy, its tenets, goals, potentials, and key risks. It presents an initial critical inquiry into the political ecology of bioeconomy promotion and then outlines this book’s in-depth assessment focused particularly on emerging economies. As these actors increasingly come to shape the fate of global sustainability in the twenty-first century, the bioeconomy reveals to be an essential domain in which to analyze sustainable development politics in large democracies of the Global South.
... Facilitation; Eco-industrial park 29 30 1 Introduction 31 A transition towards sustainable development requires continued implementation of 32 innovative sustainable systems (Cohen, 2006). These systems need to be well integrated and 33 multi-functional, addressing several sustainability challenges simultaneously (Matson, 2001). ...
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Biogas systems are often multi-functional and involve several actors in different sectors, requiring these actors to collaborate closely in order to implement such systems. In this paper, a study is presented where the theory of institutional capacity building is used to guide interventions with public and private actors to facilitate the development of local biogas systems in Norrköping, Sweden. The interventions were performed in the form of a workshop series, where local actors with potential to influence biogas developments actively took part. The workshop series generated knowledge on Norrköping’s significant potential for both producing and using biogas, which was traced, in part, to its high concentration of bio-based industries and its good position as a hub for transports. The interventions also created a shared understanding that cooperation and coordination to distribute resources and knowledge about biogas, both geographically and across sectors, was critical for realizing this potential. The municipal organization was identified as an important actor for coordinating these efforts. Observations during the workshops and survey responses indicate that the interventions contributed to building institutional capacity and initiation of efforts to develop local biogas solutions. Ideas put forth in this study enable interventions to target the intangible internal capacities of emerging industrial symbiosis networks. In addition, institutional capacity building serves as a useful analytical framework capable of capturing progress within emerging networks in the short-term even when material, water or energy synergies are yet to be realized.
... Some are national and some are more regional; some have a broad agenda and others focus on specific aspects of the environment; some are more radical and some are quite conservative; some are parts of global organizations, others have international programs and others, still, are only national; and some are much larger and richer than others. US environmentalism has historically had a very strong naturalist emphasizing the preservation or conservation of nature and natural resources (Gottlieb 2005;Cohen 2006). But, increasingly, the difference is between market and non-market environmentalists with most large US environmental organizations falling within market environmentalism. ...
Technical Report
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The report examines the range of US labour union views towards climate policy.
... Woollard and Ostry, 2001), and an increasing number of scholars highlight the role of science, technology, and innovation in fuelling social inclusion and environmental resilience (e.g. Cohen, 2006;Hart et al., 2003;Kemp and Pearson, 2007). ...
Thesis
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The capability to rapidly and successfully move into new business models is an important source of sustainable competitive advantage and a key leverage to improve the sustainability performance of organisations. However, research suggests that many business model innovations fail. Despite the importance of the topic, the reasons for failure are relatively unexplored, and there is no comprehensive description of the sustainable business model innovation process in the literature. This research addresses this gap by sequentially employing four research methods. First, a literature review is conducted to synthesise a conceptual model as a framework for an empirical investigation. This investigation used two focus groups with ten participants, interviews with 61 senior managers of 24 organisations, and active participatory research, in which the researcher joined the teams of two different business model innovation projects for several months. The research provides the most comprehensive literature review on the definition and process of sustainable business model innovation to date. It identifies five different process steps of sustainable business model innovation as well as a comprehensive list of key activities and challenges associated with each step of the process. It also discusses how the resulting process framework could be translated into a management tool and outlines some insights on the organisational setup of the process and success factors. These findings can serve as hypotheses to guide further research on sustainable business model innovation and adjacent phenomena. It also provides direction for practitioners engaged in sustainable business model innovation in similar context as the ones investigated. As a result, the research can help organisations to structure their activities better, anticipate key challenges, and build up sustainable business model innovation capabilities.
... Indeed, the greening processes have moved from remediation methods, to holistic methods, but now appear to have moved into managerial methods that break up the environmental problem into manageable fragments, to the point of favouring normative solutions (STEELE, 2005;Cohen, 2006;Tabb and Senem Deviren, 2014). The procurement of environmental design projects in Canada increasingly rely on environmental management tools, and rightfully so, since this is the best method to ensure that environmental responsibilities have been taken. ...
Article
How is environmental design influencing the way in which cultural public places (museums, libraries, parks, campuses) are imagined, designed and symbolized in Canadian competitions? In the 1960s, the drive towards holistic approaches of public and individual human settlements gave rise to the idea of environmental design, as a means to transcend the boundaries between various design disciplines: architecture, landscape, urban and product design. In the 1970s, environmentalism started to shift towards an ecological ideology soon dominated by technical solutions. This technological turn was driven by highly structured principles in the search for efficiency. Given that the goal of these reorientations of practice is to design for a cleaner future, how has this turn affected the way that environmental architecture procurement and design practices? My research hypothesis states that shifting values and significances in the environmental discourse for cultural public places are not mere rhetorical choices, but meaningful traces of deeper transformations induced by the way in which environmentalism was emerging as an imperative in the design of the built environment. This paper holds as its hypothesis that environmental issues are increasingly addressed in a normalized manner in architecture procurement and design practices, specifically, when environmental questions are increasingly specialized. This is quite a divergence from the deep systemic research and experimentation of the late 1960s and early 1970s. This potential trend can have significant consequences not only in the future of architectural design and its management of environmental risks, but also in other areas or fields where environmental technology and designs are employed to support cleaner production. We have selected the architectural competition as the comparative device to study this phenomenon. We will compare competitions launched between the 1970s and the 2000s in order to better understand the movement of environmental practices. These competitions will be selected from the comprehensive database, the Catalogue of Canadian Competitions (ccc.umontreal.ca).
... Indeed, the greening processes have moved from remediation methods, to holistic methods, but now appear to have moved into managerial methods that break up the environmental problem into manageable fragments, to the point of favouring normative solutions (STEELE, 2005;Cohen, 2006;Tabb and Senem Deviren, 2014). The procurement of environmental design projects in Canada increasingly rely on environmental management tools, and rightfully so, since this is the best method to ensure that environmental responsibilities have been taken. ...
Article
How is environmental design influencing the way in which cultural public places (museums, libraries, parks, campuses) are imagined, designed and symbolized in Canadian competitions? In the 1960s, the drive towards holistic approaches of public and individual human settlements gave rise to the idea of environmental design, as a means to transcend the boundaries between various design disciplines: architecture, landscape, urban and product design (Sanoff and Cohn, 1975). In the 1970s, environmentalism started to shift towards an ecological ideology soon dominated by technical solutions (Naess, 1973, Jonas, 1985). This technological turn was driven by highly structured principles in the search for efficiency (Tischner et al., 2000, Fletcher and Goggin, 2001, Birkeland, 2002). My research hypothesis states that shifting values and significances in the environmental discourse for cultural public places are not mere rhetorical choices, but meaningful traces of deeper transformations induced by environmentalism. we will compare a series of architecture competitions launched between the 1970s and the 2000s in order to better understand the ever-changing movement of environmentalism. These competitions will be selected from those already archived in the database, Catalogue of Canadian Competitions (ccc.umontreal.ca). We are specifically seeking to map out the design approaches within the spectrum of experimental design on the one end and normative design on the other. Keywords: architecture competitions, environmental design, normative environmentalism, experimental environmentalism, environmental discourse
... Thus, the integral role of market turbulence necessitates further investigation as an independent moderator in the GPIP and a firm's financial performance relationship. First, we argue that in turbulent markets, there are more opportunities for a firm to incorporate sustainability into their strategic decision making (Cohen, 2006), and a firm can use GPIP as a strategic response to a turbulent market environment. In this context, Amores-Salvadó et al. (2014) argued that GPIP can be the main factor to meet requirements of conscious customers who especially value a product's environmental performance. ...
Article
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to investigate the influence of green product innovation performance (GPIP) on a firm’s financial performance (i.e. a firm’s profitability and risk). In addition, it has adopted the resource-based view and contingency theory to explore how GPIP and a firm’s financial performance relationship is manifested when subject to the moderating role of a firm’s market resource intensity and certain environmental factors, such as technological turbulence and market turbulence. Design/methodology/approach Data were collected from 202 publicly listed Thai manufacturing firms. This research has used hierarchical regression analyses to empirically test the proposed research hypotheses. Findings The findings reveal that GPIP exerts a significant influence on a firm’s financial performance, i.e. higher the GPIP, higher the firm’s profitability and lower the firm’s financial risk. Moreover, findings support the theoretical assertions that the higher level of market resource intensity, market turbulence and technological turbulence further strengthens GPIP and a firm’s financial performance relationship. Originality/value By considering the independent moderating role of market resource intensity, market turbulence and technological turbulence, this research has contributed to reconcile the previously disparate findings regarding the GPIP and a firm’s financial performance relationship. Moreover, this research has highlighted the role of the essential moderators that business managers must understand and adjust to capitalize on and achieve superior financial performance.
... Concepts clarifying and distinguishing innovation in processes, products, services, and business models (Barras, 1986;Chesbrough, 2010;Eisenhardt and Tabrizi, 1995;Ettlie and Reza, 1992;Gallouj and Weinstein, 1997;Hipp and Grupp, 2005;Utterback and Abernathy, 1975;Zott et al., 2011) Collaborative frameworks for generation and diffusion of open innovation, triple helix, and user innovation (Chesbrough, 2003;Leydesdorff, 2000;Mortara and Minshall, 2011;Pisano and Verganti, 2008;Von Hippel, 2001) Distinctions between Anthropocentric and Ecocentric approaches (Grey, 1993;Morton, 2007;White, 1967) Theories on growth and environment trade-offs, e.g., degrowth, growth limits, steady-state, and growth-fetish, (Daly, 1991;Daly and Townsend, 1993;Hamilton, 2004;Jackson, 2009;Kallis, 2011;Meadows et al., 1972) International sustainable governance discussion on environmental, social, and economic dimensions (Brundtland, 1987;Clark and Crutzen, 2005;Elkington, 1999;Kates et al., 2005;Middleton and O'Keefe, 1993;O'Riordan, 1993;Sachs, 2015) Different perceptions of what is to be sustained, what is to be developed and what is attainable (Fowke and Prasad, 1996;Kates and Parris, 2003;Leach et al., 2007;National Research Council, 1999;UNCED, 1992;United Nations, 2015;Williams and Millington, 2004) Vulnerability, resilience and complexity of social-environmental systems (Kharrazi et al., 2016a;Meerow and Newell, 2015;Rockström et al., 2009;Stirling, 2014;Turner et al., 2003) (Kharrazi et al., 2016;Meerow and Newell, 2015 Falke, 2009;Stirling, 2014;Turner et al., 2003) Sustainable corporate strategy, e.g., sustainable industries, CSR, shared value, bottom of the pyramid, and circular economy (Cohen, 2006(Cohen, , 1997Crane et al., 2014;Evans et al., 2009;Jänicke and Jacob, 2006;Mcwilliams, 2016;Porter and Kramer, 2011;Prahalad, 2004;Prahalad and Hart, 2002;Webster, 2015) ...
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This paper synthesises and discusses the theoretical foundations of sociotechnical systems change for sustainability by conducting a systematic literature review of 182 scientific articles. The articles were sampled and analysed through a combination of bibliometric analysis, snowballing, content analysis and problematization. After grouping the literature and synthesising its key contributions, we identified 14 embedded ontological and normative foundations grounding the theoretical developments of this field. They delineate the underlying motivations of research questions; the understanding of what is considered positive and attainable change; the factors considered to be part of the explanation of phenomena; and the correlation and causality patterns that can be explored to steer sociotechnical system change for sustainability. By revealing dominant and pervasive foundations to how sociotechnical system change is analysed, we contribute to clarify theoretical developments and identify opportunities for future contributions.
... taxes and incentives) must provide clear objectives in terms of environmental performance, helping to address market failures and allowing CE initiatives to prosper. At the same time, public agencies play a crucial role in ensuring planning and institutional 5 To enable easier reading, when there are more than three references together these are gathered in footnotes, here: (Baas and Hjelm, 2015;Bakshi et al., 2015;Cohen, 2006;Deutz, 2009;Huber, 2000;Koenig and Cantlon, 1999;Körhönen, 2008;Körhönen et al., 2004;van den Bergh, 2013). 6 (Andrews and deVault, 2009;Bergquist et al., 2013;Cheng, 2007;Heyes and Kapur, 2011;Yarime, 2007). ...
Article
In the ongoing sustainability debate, the circular economy (CE) has been steadily gaining ground as a new paradigm. At the same time, eco-innovation (EI) has been recognised as a key element in carrying out the transition from a linear to a circular system of production and consumption. However, little information can be found concerning whether and how EI can actually facilitate the change to a CE. While extensive literature on EI, and a growing body of research exploring the CE, already exist, there is, as yet, no comprehensive understanding concerning the connections between these two concepts. Drawing on academic contributions from the fields of EI and CE, this analysis seeks to clarify and synthesise findings at the intersection of these two fields. The aim is threefold: derive literature-based working definitions of CE and EI; review the role of EI at CE's macro, meso, and micro levels; and characterise CE-inducing EI in terms of targets, mechanisms and impacts. Our literature review shows that an EI-driven techno-economic transition to a CE requires specific solutions, i.e. different forms of EI-driven "clean congruence" at distinct levels of operation. Generally speaking, movement toward a CE is found to be contingent on "systemic" EI, that is, not only intense in technology but also involving dynamic and holistic combinations of service innovations and novel organisational set-ups.
... Woollard and Ostry, 2000), and an increasing number of scholars highlight the role of science, technology, and innovation in fuelling social inclusion and environmental resilience (e.g. Hart and Milstein, 2003;Kemp and Pearson, 2007;Cohen, 2006). ...
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While the terms Circular Economy and sustainability are increasingly gaining traction with academia, industry, and policymakers, the similarities and differences between both concepts remain ambiguous. The relationship between the concepts is not made explicit in literature, which is blurring their conceptual contours and constrains the efficacy of using the approaches in research and practice. This research addresses this gap and aims to provide conceptual clarity by distinguishing the terms and synthesising the different types of relationships between them. We conducted an extensive literature review, employing bibliometric analysis and snowballing techniques to investigate the state of the art in the field and synthesise the similarities, differences and relationships between both terms. We identified eight different relationship types in the literature and illustrated the most evident similarities and differences between both concepts.
... Ecopreneurship has gained increasing interest in the past decade from scholars and practitioners. Research focusing on ecopreneurship has moved progressively from niche, academic outlets specializing in environmental management (Cohen, 2006;Schaltegger, 2002) to more mainstream journals in entrepreneurial scholarship (Cohen and Winn, 2007;Hall et al., 2010). In addition to the increasing focus on environmental entrepreneurship, gender is receiving increasing attention in the extant entrepreneurship literature (Jennings and Brush, 2013). ...
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Purpose Drawing on the multiplicity of context approach, this study investigates whether female entrepreneurs are more likely than male entrepreneurs to create environmentally oriented organizations. This study aims to examine how context, measured by gender socialization stereotypes and post-materialism, differentially affects the kinds of organizations entrepreneurs choose to create. Design/methodology/approach To test the hypotheses, this study utilizes Global Entrepreneurship Monitor data from 2009 ( n = 17,364) for nascent entrepreneurs, baby businesses owners and established business owners in 47 counties. This study also utilizes the World Values Surveys to measure gender ideologies and post-materialist cultural values at the country level. To test the hypotheses, a logistic multi-level model is estimated to identify the drivers of environmental venturing. Data are nested by countries, and this allows random intercepts by countries with a variance components covariance structure. Findings Findings indicate that female entrepreneurs are more likely to engage in ecological venturing. Societies with high levels of post-materialist national values are significantly more likely to affect female entrepreneurs to engage in environmental ventures when compared to male entrepreneurs. Moreover, traditional gender socialization stereotypes decrease the probability of engaging in environmental entrepreneurship. Likewise, female entrepreneurs in societies with strong stereotypes regarding gender socialization will more likely engage in environmental entrepreneurship than male entrepreneurs. Research limitations/implications The present study uses a gender analysis approach to investigate empirical differences in environmental entrepreneurial activity based on biological sex. However, this research assumes that gender is the driver behind variations in ecopreneurship emphasis between the engagement of males and females in venturing activity. The findings suggest that female entrepreneurs pursuing ecological ventures are more strongly influenced by contextual factors, when compared to male entrepreneurs. Future research can build upon these findings by applying a more nuanced view of gender via constructivist approaches. Originality/value This study is one of the few to investigate ecologically oriented ventures with large-scale empirical data by utilizing a 47-country data set. As a result, it begins to open the black box of environmental entrepreneurship by investigating the role of gender, seeking to understand if men and women entrepreneurs equally engage in environmental venturing. And it responds to calls that request more research at the intersection of gender and context in terms of environmental entrepreneurship.
... Unlike technologically optimistic eco-modernists, technopessimistic environmentalists argue that technology always involves the creation of non-natural substances and activities, which can damage or disrupt natural ecological cycles (Cohen, 2006). Thus technology is a threat to sustainability and could be seen as a means to exert power and control over other human beings and the environment. ...
Article
A trend analysis of Eurobarometer data shows that attitudes towards science and technology are diversifying in the EU, with enthusiasm clearly losing out to more ambivalent stances. In the past any diversion from unquestioned optimism was interpreted as a bad sign and attributed to the public's ignorance. Today it is often welcomed as a sign of an increasingly emancipated public. In the sustainability sciences, including Ecological Economics, attitudes towards technology also cover a wide spectrum, the formalisation and exploration of which are the goals of this paper. Drawing on social and philosophical studies of technology and insights from Ecological Economics and related fields, we develop a framework of attitudes towards technology consisting of four main categories: Enthusiasm, Determinism, Romanticism and Scepticism. We illustrate the empirical relevance of our framework with a qualitative content analysis of Ecological Economics lecture material. The analysis uncovered and mapped a diversity of views, which co-exist without an open debate. It suggests difficulties of scholars to consistently articulate their techno-attitudes, except for enthusiasm. Our framework could help to amplify underlying vocabularies and visions of research and teaching in Ecological Economics and beyond. It could be applied in both deeper qualitative and broader quantitative analysis.
... Although some views (e.g., Cohen, 2006;Mol, 2002) claim that ecological modernization aims principally at effecting important changes to the current socio-economic paradigm of growth, others (Hayden, 2014;Carter, 2007;Baker, 2006;York & Rosa, 2003) argue that this theory clearly distances itself from any calls for a fundamental restructuring of the neoliberal free economic system. Most of these views admit, however, that the concept of ecological modernization concedes that the contemporary ecological crisis is a product of the capitalist economic system. ...
... Paralelamente, el análisis de Murphy y Gouldson (2000) concluye que la ME es incapaz de sistematizar o forzar la adopción de las nuevas soluciones técnicas por parte de las industrias. Esa falla en la sistematización así como la ausente repartición de los costes de transacción sería lo que explicaría una mayor presencia del policy change en Europa que en Estados Unidos, donde pervive una perspectiva conservacionista de la ecología (Cohen 2006). En el caso de la UE, la ME aumentaría los CT y la repartición de los CT se haría de manera indirecta, al derivar la UE parte de sus cometidos en los países miembros. ...
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Las políticas públicas son hoy día insuficientementeambiciosas para revertir el daño medioambiental que genera el hombre. La mayoría de la literatura sobre el cambio en las políticas públicas analiza sus alicientes pero no sus limitantes. En este texto elaboramos una reflexión sobre el policy change desde la noción de los costes de transacción. Tras una revisión de los tres enfoques principales del desarrollo sostenible,de la modernización y democratización ecológicas, pasamos a enunciar diez tesis sobre el papel de los costes de transacción en el policy change a partir del caso de la Política pesquera común de la Unión Europea.
... there is a large literature by ecological modernisation theorists who share the assumption that it is possible to reconcile economic development and environmental improvement by technological innovations (Hajer 1995;Cohen 1997;Weale 1998;Mol 2000;Murphy and Gouldson 2000;Mol 2003;Jänicke 2004;Sutton 2004;Jänicke and Jacob 2005;Cohen 2006). These scholars have studied the innovation and diffusion of marketable clean (er) technologies and have identified obstacles, such as market failures, which need to be addressed by government interventions. ...
... Due to this challenge, sociologists may ignore technology in favor of affluence in the IPAT framework, or there may be concern that it diverts attention away from social dimensions of GCC toward technological causes and solutions. A movement away from technological solutions also has been documented in U.S. environmental movement, 80 in contrast with the European environmental movement which has adjusted to ideas of ecological modernization. 81 However, removing a false dualism between the technological and social opens up fruitful avenues of research that could borrow from and contribute to the neighboring field of science, technology & society (STS) where theoretical approaches such as actor-network theory, 82,83 social construction of technology, 84 and co-production 85 or co-evolutionary approaches emphasize a more integrative understanding of the social and technical. ...
Article
Sociological research on global climate change (GCC) can be found in several subfields, but it has primarily emerged within the theoretical and substantive domain of sociology of the environment. This review provides an overview of sociological literature on climate change and identifies key areas for further research and development. The review focuses on four broad areas: social causes, construction of the problem, relationship between GCC and social inequality, and social dimensions of mitigation and adaptation.For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website.Conflict of interest: The author has declared no conflicts of interest for this article.
... This line of criticism becomes especially powerful if we have reason to believe that there are indeed accelerating technological paths to sustainability on a global level but that these paths are dependent on radical political action and a serious commitment to investment in the present (Mandle 2008). Under such circumstances, the environmental movement's resistance to an innovation-driven future (Cohen 2006) becomes ethically problematic since it is precisely those activists that are needed to not only persuade mainstream politicians about the urgency of the ecological crisis but also to build public support for radical investments in breakthrough technologies. ...
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While structural approaches to sustainability have remained unable to muster wider political support, green political theory has for some time taken a voluntarist turn, arguing that deep changes in attitudes and behaviour are necessary to reduce the ecological debt of the rich countries. Within environmental citizenship theory it is believed that justice requires each individual to start living within his or her 'ecological space'. Firmly rooted in the pollution paradigm, environmental citizenship theory holds that the path to sustainability goes through a dramatic reduction in economic activity and international trade. Since such cuts in material welfare run counter to the preferences of many, doubts can be had about their political plausibility. More seriously, with a world population of more than seven billions, it is doubtful that even such harsh sacrifices would suffice to ensure environmental sustainability. This article challenges environmental citizenship theory by arguing that it is tied to a conception of sustainability which is both theoretically misleading and strategically unfortunate in a rapidly industrialising world. Instead of further individual guilt, there is an urgent need to define new collective progressive projects aimed at universal affluence and natural restoration. Fashionable as a sense of individual guilt may be, it fails to recognise the responsibility of the rich world to provide new technologies capable of securing global environmental sustainability.
... Even absent TNC, the American environmental movement is overwhelmingly preoccupied with two interrelated sets of issues: wildlife protection and landscape preservation. More than 90% of all so-called environmental organizations in the country are principally oriented around this pair of concerns (Cohen, 2006a). And herein lies the basis for the delayed pronouncement made by S&N. ...
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The American environmental movement has been struggling for more than a year to digest the strong critique offered by Michael Shellenberger and Ted Nordhaus in their widely disseminated treatise "The Death of Environmentalism." Their essay accuses organized environmentalism of framing key issues in overly narrow terms, of failing to connect with everyday public concerns, and of inadequately responding to the challenges of conservative political interests. This article briefly summarizes the essay's key arguments, retraces some relevant history pertaining to the past decade of environmental policy making, and highlights some of the areas in which this work touches on topical issues within the environmental social sciences. The article ends with a brief overview of the other contributions that make up this symposium.
... EM reconstructs the view of science and technology as both a cause and a solution for environmental problems. The key focus is on encouraging technical innovation that will make industry sustainable by both preventing and curing environmental damage (Cohen, 2006, p. 530; Fisher and Freudenberg 2001, pp. 702-704). ...
... In the treadmill metaphor, capitalism is perceived as a gigantic production and accumulation machine that seeks global economic expansion for the profit of elites; along the way, this monstrous machine is steadily bringing the earth's carrying capacity to its limits through exploitation of resources and labor as well as environmental destruction. This notion has provided green socialist thinkers with the most powerful critique of the ecological modernizationist assumption: greening of capitalism is not the predominant trend but applies primarily to the experiences of a limited number of advanced industrial economies (i.e., Germany, Japan, The Netherlands, and Nordic countries; Cohen 2006; Mol and Sonnenfeld 2000; Langhelle 2000), or even only some sectors or institutions of these economies through the effects of production diversification (York 2004). Hence, Langhelle notes, ''… ecological modernization has no established relationship either to the global environmental problems or to social justice. ...
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EurepGAP is a pioneering field level food safety protocol called ‘good agricultural practices’ currently exercising influence over the global food quality assurance system. Developed by a consortium of major European retailers, this private standard enforces codes of conduct that address issues of health and safety for producers and consumers, as well as working conditions and environmental management on the farmland. Despite various merits and benefits that the standard is premised to offer, the institutional design gives a financial edge to powerful large farms and exporters while diminishing opportunities for smaller growers and exporters to remain in the profitable agricultural export sector of the Global South. This paper explores the institutional origin and evolution of EurepGAP, discusses entry barriers and risks that EurepGAP imposes on the global value chain stakeholders, as well as the ethical implications from broader theoretical perspectives. Subsequently, it examines the evolving nature of a new trend in the fresh fruit and vegetable sector, i.e., the rise of public GAP standards. Promoted by some governments in the Global South, these GAP standards emphasize support for horizontal partnerships among value chain stakeholders, farmer participation, and less capital-intensive agricultural innovations. The paper argues that, within certain limitations, these GAP standards have the potential to be the major alternative GAP approach by encouraging a much broader inclusion of small-scale producers towards the attainment of various social, economic, and environmental benefits.
... The theme of technological innovation is to encourage the research, development and deployment of new technologies that make more efficient use of resources and reduce their negative environmental impacts (Fisher and Freudenburg 2001;Berger et. al., 2001;Cohen, 2006;Huber 2008). For adaptation, this means promoting research into urban design, infrastructure, and building to improve resilience to flooding, storms, higher temperatures, bushfires or water scarcity, while also moving planning mechanisms towards more flexible and innovative decision-making frameworks. ...
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South East Queensland (SEQ)has experienced voracious growth over the past five decades. Spanning some 200 km, this sprawling subtropical coastal conurbation is beginning to reach its ecological and socio-political limits. Over the last decade there have been concerted efforts to manage this growth with a new regime of plans and policies, but climate change has significantly complicated the challenge. This paper offers a preliminary analysis of the situation. The major climate adaptation challenges for the region are identified, including: rising sea levels, storm surges, higher temperatures, and increased freshwater scarcity. These will impact most on the elderly, sick and disadvantaged who have lower levels of resilience. The key plans and policies that address these issues are then reviewed, including: ClimateQ; the SEQ Regional Plan; and, the Draft SEQ Climate Change Management Plan. The overall planning regime is appraised in light of five core themes of strong ecological modernisation (technological innovation; engaging with economic imperatives; political and institutional change; transforming the role of social movements and discursive change)and the principles of environmental justice. It is argued that together these schools of thought could provide criteria for a more effective and equitable climate adaptation response for the region. Yes Yes
... Además, las TIC han permitido la optimización de procesos de producción industrial gracias a la posibilidad de controlar y prever costes, consumo energético, materiales o emisiones; y también han facilitado la desmaterialización o virtualización de un buen número de productos y procesos con un importante coste ambiental. 2 En algunos países del norte de Europa, como Holanda, Alemania o los países nórdicos, han venido implantándose en los últimos años políticas de modernización ecológica a través de la integración de consideraciones medioambientales en el diseño de productos y la organización de procesos (Cohen, 2006). El discurso de la modernización ecológica resulta especialmente atractivo para la clase política de los países industrializados ya que en él se reflejan los intereses de sectores del electorado que sería difícil aunar conjuntamente sin recurrir a esta fórmula. ...
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La teoría de la modernización ecológica postula la vuelta a la ciencia, la tecnología y el desarrollo industrial para dar solución a los problemas ambientales que ellas mismas, en parte, habían creado. Su puesta en marcha sucede en el contexto de la crisis contemporánea consecuencia de la acumulación de efectos secundarios de la modernidad que Ulrich Beck nombró como �modernización reflexiva�. En este escenario, el papel de la sociedad civil y las organizaciones ambientalistas se vuelve central. Tomando como caso de estudio el desarrollo eólico en la provincia de Albacete (Castilla-La Mancha, España), se discute la modernización ecológica en acción y las actitudes y estrategias de las organizaciones ambientalistas ante ella.
... Organized environmentalism seems to be trying to balance cautious hesitancy of this "end-of-pipe" "geoengineering" approach with practical acceptance that such carbon-management technologies may be needed to supplement other stabilization measures. Moreover, pervasive resistance to novel technologies within the environmental movement is recognized, and recent work has identified the challenges of overcoming this opposition (Cohen, 2006). Public opposition to the idea of underground storage may be presently minimized due to some awareness (in parts of the world at least) of the successful history of injecting CO 2 underground to enhance oil recovery. ...
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Interest in technologies associated with carbon capture and storage (CCS) has been growing rapidly in both the public and private sectors over the past five to ten years as governments, industry, and individuals grapple with how to reconcile increased energy demand with the need to reduce atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations to mitigate the risks of climate change. CCS technology involves capturing the CO2 produced during fossil-fuel combustion and storing it in underground geologic reservoirs instead of emitting it into the atmosphere. The idea of engineering the storage of carbon in a reservoir has developed from relative obscurity to an increasingly recognized approach to stabilizing atmospheric CO2 concentrations. This paper (1) identifies several influential nongovernmental stakeholders and discusses their contributions to CCS and (2) describes how governmental influence through political positions, government-supported research and development, and regulations and international treaties have influenced CCS initiatives. While the relative strength of nongovernmental and governmental influences is not quantified, this treatment of the various factors contributing to the advancement of CCS technology highlights the complexity associated with integrating developments in science and engineering into sustainable practices.
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While the concept of ‘just transitions’ has become more and more prominent in academic and popular discussions of sustainability transition, these conceptions are often framed in purely economic terms, and focus on the economic impact on communities, regions, and nation-states. We argue that a broader conception of justice in transitions, and in particular energy transitions, is required. Questions such as who will win and who will lose as society transitions to more sustainable future, who decides what the transition will look like, how are those historically excluded from decision making recognized, and how are the interests of non-humans and future generations included are important to answer in order to ensure that concepts of justice are included in transitions processes. Answering these questions is critical in “ensuring that system transitions are not only more sustainable, but also more just” (Williams and Doyon, 2019, p. 144). In this paper, we apply the justice and system transition framework (Williams and Doyon, 2019) to the Energy Futures Lab (EFL). We find that while the EFL has made great strides towards justice in transition, the EFL is also a demonstration of the challenges of incorporating justice such as addressing issues of power dynamics and conceptions of diversity and inclusion. We also find that the justice and system transitions framework proves to be a valuable tool in assessing justice in transitions projects. Going beyond the common ‘just transition’ approach that focuses on distributive justice gives a richer conception of justice and ensures that procedural and recognition approaches are included.
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Successful Food-energy-water (FEW) nexus projects will be more likely to succeed if a transdisciplinary approach is used. Ecological modernization (ecological technology) policies and practices, and sustainable supply chains influence the FEW nexus from a commerce and industry perspective. Taking these perspectives and considering their intertwined linkages is important for advancing research and adoption of FEW nexus efforts. This paper provides an overview of these perspectives and interlinkages. A biosolids case study is used to exemplify the complexities and interactions of these four thematic perspectives: the FEW nexus, transdisciplinarity, ecological modernization, and sustainable supply chains. An integrative multi-level analysis scheme is used to analyze interrelationships. This analysis and the case study help to identify a series of research opportunities to further this nascent field. Research opportunities include methodological developments, attitudinal and social concerns, performance indicator systems, and meta-social evolutions in technology and policy.
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A post-occupancy evaluation (POE) determines how the environment could be modified to reduce eyestrain and headaches, and prevent future falls. In order to adequately perform a POE on an environment for a person, the evaluator must know about the health condition of the person and symptom manifestations. This is a systemic process that necessitates an: (1) understanding of the problem; (2) understanding of the condition along with symptom manifestation; (3) understanding of the client; (4) understanding of the existing environment; and (5) understanding of how design can affect the environment. When developing designs for people with visual impairments the goal is to compose designs that will maximize a person's ability to perform all of the tasks that he/she desires. It is important for designers of built environment that visual impairments are not over-generalized as a singular condition with only one perceptual manifestation.
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This paper presents eco-innovation as the means of harmonizing economic activities with environmental resilience. Several agents and factors are involved with generation and diffusion of eco-innovations; nevertheless, the role performed by the state, as an inducer of eco-innovation, is crucial. Little is known about the role played by governments in promoting eco-innovations. This work investigates the influence of regulations in generating eco-innovation in Brazil, through a statistical analysis originated by an unprecedented survey carried out with 98 Brazilian enterprises. Results suggest that regulations are keen on promoting organizational and process innovations, with incremental impacts and internalizing environmental externalities that are no longer tolerable by the government. A high number of regulatory-pushed eco-innovations were generated using economic mechanisms, such as funding and subsidies and came out of cooperative arrangements, mostly with suppliers. Regulations could also be influencing high-impact eco-innovations, opening up opportunities to suppliers of cleaner products and services.
Purpose This study aims to test whether faculty and students who have developed the most pro-environmental values and concerns are also the most likely to reduce the on-campus waste stream. It does so by using the theory of ecological modernization. Design/methodology/approach Questionnaires were created and disseminated to a representative sample of 590 undergraduate students and faculty on one college campus. This research took place after widespread efforts were made to increase faculty and student knowledge of the college’s recycling guidelines. Findings Among the measures of environmental orientation (values, concern about pollution and green consumption), only environmental values were associated with claiming to know guidelines and self-reporting higher levels of recycling effort. None was associated with knowledge about local recycling guidelines. Research limitations/implications Research on recycling programs at other campuses would help move beyond this specific case. The use of longitudinal surveys would help establish time-order. Originality/value This research makes an important contribution by measuring the impact well-intentioned people have on the waste stream. Without thorough knowledge of local recycling guidelines, even the most environmentally oriented people with the best of intentions may contribute to the waste stream by throwing away things that can be recycled and contaminating recycling bins with non-recyclable materials. The authors conclude that activist interventions are necessary to teach about campus recycling guidelines to reduce the waste produced on campus.
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There is an emergent understanding that humanity has precipitated an ‘Anthropocene’ such that we are now operating in a reduced space for humanity in which urgent action is required. This case study paper links degrowth, technological innovation, business model innovation and corporate governance. The arguments are illustrated with the case of an embryonic vehicle and mobility business called Riversimple. The paper shows that radical technology innovations in the vehicle itself are achieved by underlying principles that focus on mass decompounding, powertrain de-coupling, whole system design, and low-volume production systems. The characteristics of the technologies are fundamental to, and in part derive from, the business model adopted by the case, and the governance structures designed to avoid the primacy usually afforded to returns to financial shareholders. While the case is embryonic, the paper argues that an important possible contribution is the ability to commence a disruptive transition to a degrowth future from within existing legal frameworks, social practices, cultural expectations and physical infrastructures.
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This paper contributes to understandings of ecologically unequal exchange within the world-systems perspective by offering a series of case studies of ecological modernization in the automobile industry. The case studies demonstrate that “green” technologies developed and instituted in core nations often require specific raw materials that are extracted from the periphery and semi-periphery. Extraction of such natural resources causes significant environmental degradation and often displaces entire communities from their land. Moreover, because states often use violence and repression to facilitate raw material extraction, the widespread commercialization of “green” technologies can result in serious human rights violations. These findings challenge ecological modernization theory, which rests on the assumption that the development and commercialization of more ecologically-efficient technologies is universally beneficial.
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Economic Growth and Sustainable Housing: An Uneasy Relationship critically discusses the possibilities of decoupling environmental degradation from economic growth. The author refutes the belief in combining perpetual economic growth with long-term environmental sustainability based on the premise that economic growth can be fully decoupled from negative environmental impacts. This proposition is underpinned by intensive study in the housing sector from both theoretical and empirical perspectives.
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What explains differentiation in a nonprofit’s organizational practices around partnering with businesses? I propose that attendance at events plays a role. To explore this, I identify a network of energy and environmental nonprofit organizations and the events that brought them together to influence appliance energy efficiency from 1994 to 2006. Using network analysis to identify cohesive subgroups, I find that over time, organizations become more likely to choose one type of event over another suggesting niche development occurred in the field. I also find that, controlling for previous efforts with businesses, funding, and mission, organizations that belonged to a cohesive subgroup of organizations brought together by an annual event promoting cooperative market approaches from 2001 to 2006 were five times more likely than those nonprofits in other subgroups to partner with business. This research has implications for understanding the creation of new events and its impact on organizational practices.
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Scholars working within the field of comparative environmental policy have regularly noted the disparity in how different countries react to ecological threats. The 1986 Chernobyl accident, a catastrophe that spread measurable amounts of radioactivity across a broad stretch of northern Europe, provides a particularly poignant illustration of the ways in which predominant public responses to environmental risk can vary. During the months following the incident, a number of commentators quipped that the ill-effects of atmospheric dispersal oddly seemed to stop at the German-French border. These remarks were motivated by the sardonic observation that while Germans typically refused to eat locally-grown vegetables during the months following the incident, their French neighbours evidenced no similar vigilance. On a broader scale, we have witnessed over the past decade cross-national variation in the form of Dutch environmental advocates cooperating with industry in a way hardly imaginable in Germany, British eco-warriors burrowing themselves into underground bunkers to obstruct the construction of new roads, and American communities aggressively protesting the construction of hazardous waste incinerators. These multifarious forms of agitation around environmental concerns invariably lead to very different political responses and policy outcomes.
Over the years, two strands of thought on Sustainable Development (SD) have emerged, often identified as ecologism and environmentalism, respectively. This paper suggests that there exists a third rhetorically excluded option, namely large-scale industrial expansion into space. Access to raw materials found on the Moon as well as unfiltered solar energy would dramatically increase the stock of resources and energy while providing unlimited sinks for pollutants; thus satisfying two of the determining factors of sustainability. Traditionally, the dilemma of resource scarcity has been a concern for environmentalists calling for a reduction of energy and material flows. Correspondingly, the promise of space exploration has been limited to technological optimists whose economic framework rarely acknowledges any such scarcity. By reconciling the politics of scarcity with technological optimism, this paper proposes a unifying political vision for the 21st century.
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It is not in doubt that pollution prevention and resource efficiency projects can sometimes make good business sense for an individual enterprise. For organizations that have previously done little to address their environmental impacts, some opportunity frequently exists to lessen those impacts while raising production efficiency and keeping their basic approach to business intact. This was the experience of many businesses during the 1980s and the origins of the suggestion that the environment was a “win-win” issue for business (Walley & Whitehead, 1996). Simply updating production equipment can offer a double dividend, which is partly why so many businesses are able to claim they are getting greener while aggregate environmental conditions deteriorate (McDonough & Braungart, 2002). The unresolved issue is whether an ongoing commitment to improve environmental performance is reflected in ongoing gains in business performance. As expressed by one advocate of eco-industrial development, the issue is not about doing the same with less but rather about doing far more with far less (Cohen-Rosenthal, 2003, p. 22).
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What can we discover about sustainability that we did not already know? Since the term first appeared during the 1970s—in a book edited by Dennis Pirages,1 and later in the IUCN’s 1980World Conservation Strategy2—it has been used and abused in many different ways and with many different meanings. For many years, the definition offered by the World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED, also known as the Brundtland Commission) in the 1987 book Our Common Future was canonical: Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The concept of sustainable development does imply limits—not absolute limits but limitations imposed by the present state of technology and social organization on environmental resources and by the ability of the biosphere to absorb the effects of human activities.3 Where the WCED complicated matters was in combining the notions of ecological stabilization and economic expansion. The WCED also shifted the focus of the debate from programmatic content to conceptual contradictions and all of the confusion that move entailed.4 As a result, the ensuing 20 years has seen much written about sustainability, as well as a myriad of projects and programs dedicated to it as a goal, without getting much closer to either definitional closure or achievement. This lack of conceptual closure is unfortunate, inasmuch as the past several years have witnessed a resurgence of interest in and commitment to “sustainability,” most visibly on university campuses and in urban planning. Whether this new commitment is linked to the rising profile of global climate change—and, perhaps, the George W. Bush Administration’s determination to dismiss it as a problem—is less than clear, but one result has been a surge of new publications, programs and prognostications addressing the problems of and prospects for sustainability. The three books under review here are emblematic of this resurgence, although they differ considerably in terms of their epistemological orientations and arguments. As a result, they also offer more or less food for thought about what sustainability means and how it might be achieved. What these and other writings suggest is that we are not much closer to a consensual definition or set of practices, although it is possible to identify three somewhat distinct approaches to sustainability. The first is a largely instrumental one—technological, economic or biological—resting on notions of linear causality in terms of reducing human impacts on ecological systems. Thus, both ecological modernization5 and preservation/restoration6 tend to focus on means of reducing harmful losses and flows as a way of conserving stocks, whether of species, pollution or energy. No particular social context is assumed; people either consume too much or too little, and can be induced to change their preferences and behave differently given appropriate politics and prices. A second approach is more cognizant of social factors in organizing production, consumption and reproduction, although the social is often regarded as the tail on a very energetic dog. Research, experience and practice indicate that humans and their societies are constituted through rules and relationships—with each other, with nature, with stuff—and these are strongly determinative in whether or not practices are sustainable. In this second approach, however, changing the social is generally thought to rest on newly-devised norms, regulations and laws aimed at the general social good of long-term human survival, which the targets of normative change will recognize as being in their self-interest. The third approach pays attention to both culture and meanings, although neither is easy to define or explain. Humans consume, produce and relate not only to live biologically, but also to sustain the societies in which they live, whose organization relies on cultural signifiers and meanings that give purpose to life and reproduce society. New beliefs and practices therefore require transformations in signifiers and meanings, as well as associated practices—not an easy proposition in the best of times. Foundations of Environmental Sustainability is representative of the first approach. It is a collection of 25 essays prepared for a symposium honoring Lee M. Talbot, a geographic ecologist at George Mason University who...
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Facing up to the controversial nature of much that is proposed to promote local economic development is a prerequisite for making progress. A tendency to shy away from the uncomfortable reality that most ideas informing policy are mired in disagreement is understandable. Those working on the 'front line' of local economic development want certainty and the ability to claim evidential backing for the strategies they put forward. Highlighting the doubts surrounding interpretations of economic success undermines the ability to progress any single policy agenda. Without the ability to justify action through the weight of scientific evidence, it is equally easy to see why much policy intervention targets replication of regional successes such as Silicon Valley, the Third Italy, Motorsport Valley, or other influential business clusters. High profile academics, business 'gurus' and consultants are frequently identified as the reason for 'enthusiastic borrowing' or a 'one-size-fits-all' approach over the local customization of development strategies (e.g. Beer, 2009; Benneworth et al., 2003; Bristow, 2005). Getting to the roots of the issue requires more than apportioning blame. A starting point for understanding the challenges to improved policy making is to consider the different kinds of evidence that academic researchers, policy consultants and economic development professionals variously supply and demand.
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Depending on their national level of income, development and modernization, all countries in the world can be generally categorized as either advanced or developing. Studies on why advanced countries continue to develop, how they maintain their level of development, and how developing countries enter into the advanced club fall into the field of "modernization science," which is an emerging interdisciplinary science. This monograph, the first English book available on "modernization science," interprets its concepts, methodologies, general theories, first and second modernization, six level-specific, six field-specific and three sector-specific modernizations, modernization policy and evaluation, and the principles and methods of national development since the 18th century. It provides clear, systematic, up-to-date information on this new discipline with more than 173 figures and 265 tables, and covers 131 countries and 97% of the global population. A comprehensive outlook on world modernization is presented from a Chinese perspective. © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012. All rights are reserved.
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A new approach to investigation of human influences on the environment identifies social organization as an influence independent of population size, affluence, and technology. The framework also identifies population events, such as births, that influence the environment. The authors use longitudinal, multilevel, mixed-method measures of local land use changes, population dynamics, and social organization to test this framework. These tests reveal that changes in social organization are strongly associated with changes in land use independent of measures of population size, affluence, and technology. Also, local birth events shape local land use changes and key proximate determinants of land use change.
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Milieusociologen maken studie van milieubederf en milieubeheer als maatschappelijke verschijnselen. Zij bestuderen de manier waarop milieuproblemen samenhangen met de organisatievorm van de moderne maatschappij alsmede de wijze waarop het tegengaan van milieubederf onderdeel wordt van de reflexieve sturing van de samenleving door gouvernementele en niet-gouvernementele actoren. De centrale stelling die in het proefschrift wordt ontwikkeld is, dat milieuproblemen de inzet kunnen en moeten vormen van een moderniseringsproces dat erop is gericht milieu-overwegingen blijvend te verankeren in de organisatie van de productie- en consumptie-cycli die het industriële karakter van de moderne maatschappij bepalen. Door dit proces van milieu-geïnduceerde veranderingen te bestuderen op het niveau van de institutionele organisatie van de samenleving en op het niveau van de organisatie van het alledaagse leven, kunnen sociologen een bijdrage leveren aan zowel de milieuwetenschap als het milieubeleid. De theorie van de ecologische modernisering van productie en consumptie zoals in eerste aanleg ontwikkeld door Joseph Huber en Martin Jänicke, representeert een van de centrale stromingen binnen de milieusociologie en kan werden gebruikt om tot een beter inzicht te komen in processen van milieuverandering in samenleving en beleid. In de verschillende hoofdstukken worden steeds onderdelen van de ecologische moderniseringstheorie verder ontwikkeld en besproken tegen de achtergrond van de sociaal wetenschappelijke en in het bijzonder de sociologische literatuur.In hoofdstuk 1 worden de hierboven beschreven doelstelling en algemene benaderingswijze van de ecologische moderniseringstheorie nader geïntroduceerd en geplaatst in de context van het veranderende milieudebat zoals dat vanaf het begin van de jaren zeventig werd gevoerd met name in enkele westers-industriële landen. Het feit dat het een moderniserings-theorie betreft, impliceert dat afstand wordt genomen van de 'grenzen aan de groei' benadering die in de jaren zeventig een dominante positie innam in het milieudebat en waarin de ontwikkeling van een alternatieve, kleinschalige organisatievorm van productie en consumptie werd gezien als het wenselijke en noodzakelijke alternatief voor de gangbare, grootschalige, industrieel-kapitalistische organisatievorm van moderne samenlevingen. Als moderniseringstheorie kwam zij echter op haar beurt onder kritiek toen vanaf de jaren negentig de discussie over 'global (environmental) change' de aandacht richtte op de veranderende rol van enerzijds de politiek en anderzijds wetenschap en techniek in de huidige fase van de 'reflexieve moderniteit'.Hoofdstuk 2 schetst de situatie in de Nederlandse milieusociologie wat betreft theorievorming en onderzoek in de periode tot het midden van de jaren tachtig. Deze situatie vormt de institutionele en disciplinaire achtergrond waartegen onze bijdrage aan de ecologische moderniseringstheorie moet worden begrepen. Met de milieukunde als dominante organisatievorm voor het bedrijven van milieuwetenschap en met een milieusociologische onderzoekstraditie die zich kenmerkte door een eenzijdige oriëntatie op empirisch, sociaal-psychologisch gefundeerd onderzoek, kon de uitgangssituatie voor de ontwikkeling van de milieusociologie tot het midden van de jaren tachtig niet als gunstig worden getypeerd. Tegen deze achtergrond wordt de noodzaak besproken om te komen tot de ontwikkeling van een theoretisch adequaat, sociologisch perspectief op het milieuvraagstuk. Daarbij wordt beargumenteerd dat de klassieke en hedendaagse varianten van de sociale ecologie noch de (neo) marxistische traditie veel bruikbare uitgangspunten bevatten voor het ontwikkelen van een dergelijk theoretisch perspectief.In hoofdstuk 3 wordt de ecologische moderniseringstheorie besproken in relatie tot de verschillende de-, anti- en postmoderniseringstheorieën van zowel neo-marxistische als nietmarxistische aard. Daarbij concentreert zich de aandacht vooral op (de confrontatie met) de stroming van de 'contra- productiviteits'-theorieën die binnen de milieubeweging in de jaren zeventig veel aanhang en invloed hadden. De idee van een kleinschalige maatschappij als alternatief voor de modern industriële samenleving wordt besproken en bekritiseerd tegen de achtergrond van de veranderende relaties tussen het lokale en het globale niveau van moderne samenlevingen, die gekenmerkt worden door het zich steeds verder over tijd en ruimte uitstrekken van sociale relaties. De door Joseph Huber ontwikkelde theorie van ecologische modernisering neemt afstand van de kleinschaligheidsgedachte in zijn klassieke vorm en bepleit in plaats van een ontmanteling van de centrale instituties van de moderniteit juist een modernisering van deze instituties. Zijn theorie wordt besproken in relatie tot de veranderingen die zich in de loop van de jaren tachtig steeds duidelijker aftekenden zowel binnen het Nederlandse milieubeleid als in de Nederlandse milieu-beweging. Veranderingen die een ondersteuning lijken voor de centrale these van Huber, namelijk dat - na een fase van 'opbouw' - de fase van 'ombouw' van het industriesysteem is aangebroken. Een ombouw of 'switch-over' die in belangrijke mate gedragen wordt door niet- gouvernementele actoren en die een belangrijke rol toekent aan daartoe 'herprogrammeerde' wetenschap en techniek.In hoofdstuk 4 wordt de schijnwerper gericht op een benadering binnen de (milieu)sociologie die op het eerste gezicht de centrale premissen van de ecologische moderniseringstheorie fundamenteel lijkt te weerspreken. De theorie van de risico-maatschappij zoals met name door Ulrich Beck gelanceerd en door Anthony Giddens mede ontwikkeld, legt grote nadruk op de onbeheersbaarheid en onomkeerbaarheid van milieuproblemen en brengt dit 'apocalyptische' karakter van milieuproblemen direct in verband met de onttovering van techniek en wetenschap en (het besef van) grenzen aan de stuurbaarheid van maatschappelijke ontwikkelingen. In plaats van een omslag in de richting van duurzame ontwikkeling wordt hier het perspectief geschetst van een samenleving waarbinnen de verdeling en toedeling van (milieu)risico's de dominante logica wordt. De ramp met de Tsjernobyl kerncentrale heeft volgens Beck een 'antropologische schok' teweeg gebracht waarbij mensen zich in een klap bewust werden van het feit dat essentiële in de zin van uiteindelijk levensbedreigende milieuproblemen niet langer zintuiglijk waarneembaar zijn en daarmee slecht met behulp van expert- kennis kunnen worden geduid. Terwijl enerzijds het besef van expert-athankelijkheid toeneemt, is er tegelijkertijd een groeiend bewustzijn van het feit dat wetenschap en techniek niet langer de onfeilbare bakens zijn voor onze omgang met onzekerheden. Het proces van 'onttovering' treft niet alleen wetenschap en techniek maar strekt zich ook uit tot de politieke arrangementen die in de periode van de 'simpele moderniteit' werden ontwikkeld: nationale politieke (milieu)arrangementen worden in werking en betekenis uitgehold onder invloed van een toenemende transnationalisering van politiek en economie. Hoewel de theorie van de risico-maatschappij op de hier genoemde onderdelen zeer waardevolle inzichten en vraagstellingen voortbrengt voor de milieusociologie, schiet zij naar onze mening tekort als milieusociologische theorie. Door een scherper onderscheid te maken naar onderscheiden categorieën van milieuproblemen, wordt het mogelijk de apocalyptische horizon van milieuhervorming specifiek te verbinden met een categorie van milieu-problemen die door Giddens als 'High-Consequence-Risks' (HCR) wordt aangeduid. Door niet op voorhand de specifieke kenmerken van HCR's ook van toepassing te verklaren op de overige milleuproblemen, ontstaat ruimte voor een meer genuanceerd beeld met betrekking tot de mogelijkheden voor het beheersen van milieuproblemen en de daarbij behorende rol van politiek en wetenschap.In de hoofdstukken 3 en 4 ligt het accent in belangrijke mate op milieu-veranderingen op het institutionele niveau van de samenleving, waarbij bovendien de analyse van productie- en consumptiecycli voornamelijk vanuit de logica van de productiesfeer wordt ondernomen. In de hoofdstukken 5 en 6 wordt het accent verlegd naar het niveau van het alledaagse leven, naar het handelen van mensen die als kundige en bekwame actoren betrokken zijn bij de reproductie van milieu-arrangementen. Daarbij wordt bovendien aandacht gevraagd voor de noodzaak om productieen consumptiecycli (ook) vanuit de logica van de consumptiesfeer te analyseren. Door de ecologische moderniseringtheorie op beide punten te corrigeren en aan te vullen ontstaat een theoretisch meer adequate variant van het door Huber en Jänicke ontwikkelde basisschema.Hoofdstuk 5 is geheel gewijd aan het klassieke micro-macro probleem in de sociale wetenschappen in het algemeen en in de sociale milieuwetenschappen in het bijzonder. Besproken wordt de manier waarop het actor-structuur dualisme binnen zowel het attitude-gedrag paradigma als in de zogenoemde rational choice en sociale dilemma benaderingen elk op een eigen wijze gereproduceerd wordt. Als alternatief worden besproken enerzijds de aan Elias ontleende civilisatie-theorie en anderzijds de door de Britse socioloog Anthony Giddens ontwikkelde structuratie-theorie. Beargumenteerd wordt dat de door Giddens ontwikkelde handelingstheorie een theoretisch adequate oplossing biedt voor het klassieke micro-macro probleem alsmede voor het conceptualiseren van het 'keuze-proces' van actoren dat zo centraal staat in het denken over milieu(on)vriendelijk gedrag. Door aan Giddens ontleende centrale begrippen als sociale praktijken, leefstijl, praktisch bewustzijn en dualiteit van structuur toe te passen op en uit te werken in het kader van het streven naar duurzame(r) leefstijlen, wordt een 'actor-georiënteerde' variant van de ecologische moderniseringstheorie ontwikkeld.In hoofdstuk 6 wordt geconstateerd dat binnen het Nederlandse milieubeleid lange tijd een op de productiesfeer toegesneden analyse van het gedrag van burger-consumenten de dominante benadering vormde. Waar vanuit het beleid de grenzen van een dergelijke benadering steeds duidelijker worden onderkend, vraagt men de sociale wetenschappen nadrukkelijk om een bijdrage met betrekking tot de vraag hoe vanuit het beleid de zogenoemde 'moeilijk bereikbare doelgroepen' benaderd zouden kunnen worden. Om het gedrag van deze doelgroepen beter te begrijpen, dient men de dynamiek in en achter consumptiegedrag en de consumptiecultuur nader te onderzoeken. De relatie van mensen met goederen en diensten vormt het centrale object van de sociologie van de consumptie. Binnen de consumptie-sociologie wordt een sterke nadruk gelegd op de sociale of symbolische waarde van producten in plaats van op de objectieve kenmerken of de gebruikswaarde van producten die zo centraal staan in de milieuwetenschap. Tussen de eenzijdig op stofstromen gerichte milieuwetenschappen enerzijds en de eenzijdig op processen van distinctie en spel gerichte sociologie anderzijds wordt getracht een voor de milicusociologie bruikbare analyse te ontwikkelen, waarbij aan zowel de objectief-materiële als aan de sociale dimensie van consumptie aandacht wordt besteed en waarbij de wisselwerking tussen de sfeer van productie en de sfeer van consumptie een belangrijke plaats inneemt. Als startpunt voor een dergelijke analyse wordt de huishoudelijke consumptie genomen. Aan de hand van een aan Giddens ontleend model wordt inzichtelijk gemaakt op welke wijze de sociale praktijken die een rol spelen in de huishoudelijke consumptie, kunnen worden geanalyseerd. De door de Noorse socioloog Per Otnes ontwikkelde variant van Giddens' basisschema maakt inzichtelijk op welke manier huishoudelijke consumptiepraktijken verbonden zijn met wat hij noemt sociaal-materiële, collectieve systemen (SMCS) als het energie-, water- en afvalnetwerk. Door de ecologische moderniseringstheorie toe te passen op en uit te werken voor deze SMCS's, ontstaat een minder exclusief op de productiesfeer toegesneden variant van deze theorie. De huidige ontwikkelingen in de nutssectoren tonen daarbij aan dat klassieke vragen als die van de balans tussen markten staatsregulering van productie- en consumptiepraktijken of die van de groot- versus kleinschalige organisatie van technieksystemen, nog immer relevant zijn.
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Social movements take shape in relation to the kind of state they face, while, over time, states are transformed by the movements they both incorporate and resist. Social movements are central to democracy and democratization. This book examines the interaction between states and environmentalism, emblematic of contemporary social movements. The analysis covers the entire sweep of the modern environmental era that begins in the 1970s, emphasizing the comparative history of four countries: the US, UK, Germany, and Norway, each of which captures a particular kind of interest representation. Interest groups, parties, mass mobilizations, protest businesses, and oppositional public spheres vary in their weight and significance across the four countries. The book explains why the US was an environmental pioneer around 1970, why it was then eclipsed by Norway, why Germany now shows the way, and why the UK has been a laggard throughout. Ecological modernization and the growing salience of environmental risks mean that environmental conservation can now emerge as a basic priority of government, growing out of entrenched economic and legitimation imperatives. The end in view is a green state, on a par with earlier transformations that produced first the liberal capitalist state and then the welfare state. Any such transformation can be envisaged only to the extent environmentalism maintains its focus as a critical social movement that confronts as well as engages the state. © J. S. Dryzek, D. Downes, H. K. Hernes, C. Hunold, and D. Schlosberg 2003. All rights reserved.
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The theory of ecological modernization has received growing attention over the past decade, but in the process, it has been interpreted in conflicting and sometimes contradictory ways. In this article, we attempt to bring greater clarity to the discussion. Reviewing the works both by the theory’s best-known proponents and by its most outspoken critics, we notethat difficulties are created not just by the combining of theoretical predictions and policy prescriptions - a point that hasalready been noted in the literature - but also by the stark and highly significant differences in expectations between ecological modernization and most prevailing theories of society-environment relationships. Perhaps in part because of these differences, disagreements have often been expressed in stark, black-and-white terms. If the problems are to be resolved, there will be a need for greater theoretical precision, developed in conjunctionwith empirical research that is more focused, more finely differentiated, and more rigorous.
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We raise four challenges to the claim of ecological modernization theory (EMT) that continued modernization is necessary for ecological sustainability. First, EMT needs to go beyond merely demonstrating that societies modify their institutions in reaction to environmental problems and show that such modifications lead to ecological improvements. Second, EMT must show that late stages of modernizing processes lead to the ecological transformation of production and consumption at relatively high frequency. Third, EMT must demonstrate that industries or firms that are reducing their direct impact on the environment are not contributing to the expansion of negative impacts by other industries or firms. Fourth, EMT must show not only that economies are becoming more resource efficient but also that the pace of increase in efficiency exceeds the pace of increase in overall production. In this article, we review the existing evidence and find that EMT has insufficiently addressed these four issues.
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This paper begins with an examination of the role of state failure in constructing and preserving inefficient and ineffective systems of pollution control. It then assesses the characteristics, goals and mechanisms associated with integrated economic development and environmental protection as proposed by the conceptual framework of ecological modernization. In seeking to assess the applicability of the policy prescriptions of ecological modernization, recent European Union (E.U.) policy developments relating both to environment and economy are analysed. It is contended that while aspects of the emerging E.U. policy framework correspond to the theoretical construct of ecological modernization, the reluctance of other key actors in the E.U. policy process, most notably certain national governments, remains a key obstacle to its implementation. The paper submits that this reluctance is associated with concerns regarding the impact of environmental policy on industrial competitiveness. Through an examination of the interrelations between environmental policy and industrial competitiveness in the U.K., the paper suggests that to date the integration of environmental and economic concerns in U.K. industry remains weak. However, it also suggests that recent positive experience relating to the impact of environmental policy on industrial competitiveness is beginning to change the way that industry perceives policies that reflect the goals of ecological modernization. The paper concludes that these altered perceptions in industry have the potential to influence the policy stances adopted by national governments and hence to overcome some of the key barriers to ecological modernization at the E.U. level.
Article
Sumario: The new politics of pollution -- Idioms of analysis -- The politics of ecological modernisation -- Controlling pollution in the round -- Turning government green -- Implementation, economic instruments and public participation -- The international dimension -- Beyond the tragedy of the commons?
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"...an absorbing, well-researched, and illuminating life of an American leader who now receives the full attention he deserves." -MICHAEL BESCHLOSS, EDITOR OF AMERICAN HERITAGE ILLUSTRATED HISTORY OF THE PRESIDENTS "Char Miller's lively, insightful account of the life and world of American forester Gifford Pinchot fills a vitally important gap in environmental and conservation history. Anyone captivated by the issues and controversies surrounding the preservation and development of the nation's natural heritage should read this engaging, carefully researched biography." -CAROLYN MERCHANT, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, BERKELEY, AUTHOR OF THE DEATH OF NATURE Gifford Pinchot is known primarily for his work as first chief of the U. S. Forest Service and for his argument that resources should be used to provide the "greatest good for the greatest number of people." But Pinchot was a more complicated figure than has generally been recognized, and more than half a century after his death, he continues to provoke controversy. Gifford Pinchot and the Making of Modern Environmentalism, the first new biography in more than three decades, offers a fresh interpretation of the life and work of the famed conservationist and Progressive politician. In addition to considering Gifford Pinchot's role in the environmental movement, historian Char Miller sets forth an engaging description and analysis of the man -- his character, passions, and personality -- and the larger world through which he moved. Char Miller begins by describing Pinchot's early years and the often overlooked influence of his family and their aspirations for him. He examines Gifford Pinchot's post-graduate education in France and his ensuing efforts in promoting the profession of forestry in the United States and in establishing and running the Forest Service. While Pinchot's twelve years as chief forester (1898-1910) are the ones most historians and biographers focus on, Char Miller also offers an extensive examination of Pinchot's post-federal career as head of The National Conservation Association and as two-term governor of Pennsylvania. In addition, he looks at Pinchot's marriage to feminist Cornelia Bryce and discusses her role in Pinchot's political radicalization throughout the 1920s and 1930s. An epilogue explores Gifford Pinchot's final years and writings. Char Miller offers a provocative reconsideration of key events in Pinchot's life, including his relationship with friend and mentor John Muir and their famous disagreement over damming Hetch Hetchy Valley. The author brings together insights from cultural and social history and recently discovered primary sources to support a new interpretation of Pinchot -- whose activism not only helped define environmental politics in early twentieth century America but remains strikingly relevant today.
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The relevance and importance of Samuel P. Hay's book, Conservation and the Gospel of Efficiency, has only increased over time. Written almost half a century ago, it offers an invaluable history of the conservation movement's origins, and provides an excellent context for understanding contemporary enviromental problems and possible solutions. Against a background of rivers, forests, ranges, and public lands, this book defines two conflicting political processes: the demand for an integrated, controlled development guided by an elite group of scientists and technicians and the demand for a looser system allowing grassroots impulses to have a voice through elected government representatives.
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Many writers either glorify globalization or vilify it, particularly for its destructive environmental effects. In this book environmental sociologist Arthur Mol provides a more balanced understanding of the relationship between globalization and environmental quality. Mol bases his arguments on his theory of ecological modernization, which holds that although processes of modernization and globalization often result in environmental degradation, they also can encourage policies and programs designed to arrest degradation and improve environmental quality. Building on earlier ecological modernization studies that focused on Europe, North America, and East and Southeast Asia, Mol takes here a more global perspective. He also addresses the increasing roles of nonstate actors, especially international institutions, nongovernmental organizations, popular movements, and transnational corporations. After examining the confusion created by the failure to distinguish among globalization, global capitalism, and neoliberalism, Mol analyzes both globalization's destructive environmental consequences and its contribution to global environmental reform. Elaborating on the subject of reform, he focuses on three case studies, one involving the economic triad of the European Union, the NAFTA region, and Japan; one involving the relationship between the triad and developing countries; and one involving three developing countries: Vietnam, the Netherlands Antilles, and Kenya.
The Emergence of Ecological Modernization: Integrating the Environment and the Economy?
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S. Young (Ed.), The Emergence of Ecological Modernization: Integrating the Environment and the Economy?, Routledge, New York, 2000. M.J. Cohen / Futures 38 (2006) 528–547
Regulatory Realities: the Implementation and Impact of Industrial Environmental Policy
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