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Value creation and appropriation in economic, social, and environmental domains: Recognizing and resolving the institutionalized asymmetries

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Abstract

Value creation and appropriation are much-studied processes in business and management fields. However, both academia and business practice have traditionally focused on how value is created and appropriated in the economic context and by economic actors. This overemphasis on economic logic has created institutionalized asymmetries in managing the relationship between business, society and ecological environment. In this paper, we broaden the value creation and appropriation analysis along two dimensions: (1) the type of economic goods used to create value (private and club goods, public goods and common goods) and (2) value creation and appropriation domains (economic, social, and environmental). Building on this framework, we argue that there are several institutionalized asymmetries in the relationship between the goods used to create value and the domains in which the value is eventually appropriated. We point out the system-level tendency of value over-appropriation in the economic domain over the two other domains as well as value over-appropriation in the social domain over the environmental domain. We also discuss how existing organizational practices, such as corporate social responsibility, shared value creation, and sustainable business models, have attempted to overcome them, and reflect on the main critiques to these approaches. Finally, we identify potential business-based solutions to the institutionalized asymmetries and provide implications to research and practice.

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... Initially, placed emphasis on how the focal firm can create and capture value from open innovation through business models; now increased interest in how value is created, distributed, and captured across multiple firms (see e.g., Bogers et al., 2017;Chesbrough et al., 2018;Chesbrough, 2020) Has continuously put emphasis on value creation and value capture mechanisms, and on how value is distributed among multiple participants (see e.g., Ritala et al., 2013;Ritala et al., 2021) Process view Open innovation viewed as a process is not uncommon (see e.g., Gassmann and Enkel, 2004), but is often treated as changes in "beings" rather than patterns of emergence -of "becoming" A few longitudinal and process-oriented studies exist (see e.g., Chiaroni et al., 2010Chiaroni et al., , 2011Di Minin et al., 2010), but this is still a rather neglected area in open innovation ...
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... Our methodology is not based on a systematic review, but we followed a narrative literature review method (i.e. "a narrative review synthesizes evidence familiar to an author on a given topic or theme") to explore the concept of value in eco-design, as describe in (Sovacool et al., 2018) and adopted in a recent paper on value by Ritala et al. (2021). The objective is to contribute to a better knowledge on this topic, in line with previous research on value appropriation (Ritala et al., 2021) or sustainable value (Lüdeke-Freund et al., 2020). ...
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... Sustainable business models help zoom in on a spectrum of innovative activities that enable firms to propose, create and deliver, and capture sustainable value [15,[40][41][42]. ...
... Our analysis highlights how firm activities contribute in sustainability transitions by starting with changes in firm's practices, going through internal and external organizational structures, and reaching industry and societal changes in systems in a timescale from short-to long-term respectively. This contribution increases the understanding of how a diverse set of activities related to a firm business model support transitions from a governance perspective [21,42]. ...
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Are we well dressed? Our clothes are getting cheaper, they follow fashion more rapidly and we’re buying more and more of them. At the same time, we hear more about poor working conditions in clothing factories, the greenhouse effect is becoming more threatening and the UK is facing a crisis in disposing of its waste. What should we do? This report aims to help answer that question, by looking at what might happen if the way that our clothes are made and used were to be changed. What would happen if we used different fibres, or different farming practices? What would be the consequence of washing our clothes in a different way, or keeping our carpets for longer? What would happen if more of our clothes were disposed of through clothes banks? In the UK we are already awash with information on these questions – so why read this report? Firstly, the report is intended to be neutral – it does not have an agenda, or seek to promote a particular change or approach. Secondly, it attempts to take a very broad view of the sector – encompassing the views of business, government and campaigners and trying to reflect the widest definitions of ‘sustainability’. Thirdly, it attempts to identify the potential for significant and lasting change by looking at what might happen if a whole industrial sector were to experience a change. The report is intended to be valuable to a wide range of interested groups. It is written for people in business – who have to balance their personal ethics and the concerns of their consumers with the need for their business to prosper. It is written for consumers who have a limited budget but are concerned about the impact of their shopping choices. It is written for campaigners and those in education, government and the media – to try to provide as balanced evidence as possible about the present and future impacts of the clothing and textiles sector. Five person-years of work leading to this report were funded by the Landfill Tax Credit scheme, through the Biffaward scheme administered by the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts and with 10% funding from Marks and Spencer. On the way to writing the report, we have received help from hundreds of people working in the sector and have attempted to acknowledge many of them inside the back cover. We would particularly like to acknowledge the contributions of Marisa de Brito, who worked with us for the first half of the project, Jon Cullen who designed the graphics, sourced the photographs and edited and laid out the document, and our steering committee of Mike Barry from Marks and Spencer, Peter Jones from Biffa and David Aeron- Thomas from Forum for the Future.
Article
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Business model innovation is an important lever for change to tackle pressing sustainability issues. In this paper, ‘sufficiency’ is proposed as a driver of business model innovation for sustainability. Sufficiency-driven business models seek to moderate overall resource consumption by curbing demand through education and consumer engagement, making products that last longer and avoiding built-in obsolescence, focusing on satisfying ‘needs’ rather than promoting ‘wants’ and fast-fashion, conscious sales and marketing techniques, new revenue models, or innovative technology solutions. This paper uses a case study approach to investigate how companies might use sufficiency as a driver for innovation and asserts that there can be a good business case for sufficiency. Business models of exemplar cases are analysed and insights are gained that will contribute to future research, policy makers and businesses interested in exploring sufficiency.
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Firms play a crucial role in furthering social welfare through their ability to foster stakeholders' contributions to joint value creation-value creation that involves a public good dilemma arising from high task and outcome interdependence-leading to what economists have labeled the "team production problem." We build on relational models theory to examine how individual stakeholders' contributions to joint value creation are shaped by stakeholders' mental representations of their relationships with the other participants in value creation, and how these mental representations are affected by the perceived behavior of the firm. Stakeholder theorists typically contrast a broadly defined "relational" approach to stakeholder management with a "transactional" approach based on the price mechanism- and argue that the former is more likely than the latter to contribute to social welfare. Our theory supports this prediction for joint value creation but also implies that the dichotomy on which it is based is too coarse grained; there are three distinct ways to trigger higher contributions to joint value creation than through a transactional approach. Our theory also helps explain the tendency for firms and their stakeholders to converge on transactional relationships, despite their relative inefficiency in the context of joint value creation.
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To address global sustainability challenges, major investments are required in sustainable businesses that deliver triple bottom line results. Although interest in sustainable businesses is on the rise, these businesses are not yet widespread. Venture capital investment has a key role to play in the development of sustainable start-ups. The research area of ‘sustainable’ venture capital is still emerging. More research is required to understand how venture capital can support the development of sustainable businesses. This paper provides insight into how venture capitalists can contribute to sustainable business success, by investigating their role, motivations, investment theses, and barriers and enablers to success of sustainable ventures. The following question is investigated: How can sustainable venture capitalists contribute to the success of sustainable start-ups? Interviews were conducted with an expert sample of leading sustainable venture capitalists and other key stakeholders in sustainable entrepreneurship. It was found that next to financial support, venture capitalists provide triple bottom line business advice and network support. Key success factors include business model innovation, collaborations and a strong business case, whereas failure factors include a lack of suitable investors, a strong incumbent industry and a short-term investor mind-set. Sustainable start-ups should focus on triple bottom line business model innovation, find opportunity in new technology and funding platforms and develop multiple business cases to create success beyond the ‘green customer base’. Sustainable venture capitalists can help prove the success of sustainable business formats, mitigate financial risk through co-investments and exercise patience by balancing financial with social and environmental returns.
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An effective integrative review can provide important insight into the current state of research on a topic and can recommend future research directions. This article discusses different types of reviews and outlines an approach to writing an integrative review. It includes guidance regarding challenges encountered when composing integrative reviews, such as fair representation of different perspectives and synthesizing that knowledge to yield new insights. An integrative review is of unique value among other types of knowledge-synthesis vehicles, such as narrative or systematic reviews and meta-analyses. Because each has distinctive but important approaches to synthesizing empirical knowledge, our protocol for writing integrative reviews is designed to complement these other knowledge-synthesis vehicles to best advance organization science.
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Social enterprises aim to create both social and financial value, requiring the creation of business models that allow both objectives to be pursued simultaneously. However, the tensions between these objectives can make this a challenging task in terms of issues such as mission drift and commercial failure. Our multiple case study of seven social enterprises operating in Finland examines business model innovation in social enterprises from an activity system perspective to identify different patterns of activity through which social and financial goals are developed, discarded, and reconfigured. We find that the process involves variety of hybrid logics, with both sequential and parallel combinations of social and financial value, as well as gradual and discontinuous progressions. The findings also provide evidence of how social and financial goals guide the strategic framing of the business model in social enterprises by setting mutually constraining boundary conditions, restricting or guiding opportunities for business model innovation.
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The concept of circular economy is increasingly receiving attention in different domains, including strategic management, operations management, and technology management. It requires companies to design their business model (i.e., the value network, the relationships with the supply chain partners, and the value propositions towards customers) around a new concept of sustainable development that reduces consumption of natural resources and preserves the environment. However, extant research falls short in terms of explaining how companies design their business model according to the circular economy principles. Starting from this premise, the present paper provides a systematic review of the literature on the design of business models in the context of circular economy, aiming to offer an overview of the state of research and outline a promising research agenda.
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Ecosystems have recently emerged as a visible stream in organization and management research. The ecosystem concept promises a broader, systems view of organizational and technological phenomena beyond traditional firm, value chain or network boundaries. However, adopting an ecosystem approach presents a range of methodological challenges for researchers, including how to set boundaries for the ecosystems, as well as how to examine their structure and relationships, as well as to explain the inherent dynamics and co-evolution. Based upon on a complex adaptive systems lens, this study proposes a theoretically grounded but pragmatic approach to address these challenges. The proposed methodological framework facilitates exploration of the conceptual, structural and temporal dimensions of ecosystem research design. An illustrative example is also included to showcase the framework's applicability.
Article
Since the inception of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Next 11 (N11) countries are facing difficulties in attaining the SDG objectives, as maintaining the environmental quality has been a challenge for them. In this study, we have revisited the technology policies of these countries, and in doing so, we have tried to address the problem of environmental degradation, while addressing the issues of sustained economic growth, clean and affordable energy, and quality education. In this pursuit, we have designed two indices for environmental degradation and technological advancement, and then analyzed the association between them following the Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) hypothesis. The empirical analysis has been done by IPAT framework, and by using bootstrapped quantile regression and rolling window heterogeneous panel casualty tests, over a period of 1990–2017. Following the results obtained from the analysis, we have tried to address the objectives of SDG 13, SDG 4, SDG 8, SDG 9, SDG 7, and SDG 10.
Article
There is an increasing interest in the role of actors in the pursuit of sustainability transitions. In this paper, we adopt a life course perspective to explore active sustainability actors. To this end, we interviewed 16 professionals across private, public, and third sectors in Finland. The paper's main implication is in introducing a life course perspective to the study of active sustainability actors. Second, we propose a grounded model of active actors' sustainability engagement. The model details sustainability agency formation and maintenance dynamics. Going forward, our findings are a call for further research on sustainability agency, be it in its engagement, via life courses, or via the study of different actor types.
Article
Since many years, companies are trying to cope with impressive technological growth rates, severe environmental issues and even more restrictive national and international directives. However, innovative Business Models (BMs) and industrial strategies adequate to this new context are still either under development or implementation. To this aim, the article proposes a systematic literature review on existing Circular Business Models (CBMs) and their classification methods, by selecting the most promising ones. A total amount of 283 articles related with CBMs has been assessed into detail, by identifying: 5 archetypes, 9 classification methods, 5 adoption-oriented challenges, 4 decision-support tools and 3 additional research areas. Key findings demonstrate that: i) Product-Service Systems (PSSs)-oriented and Reuse, Remanufacturing and Recycling (3R)-based CBMs are the most common archetypes, ii) Business Model Canvas is the most diffused classification framework, iii) sustainability and company-based challenges are the most discussed by the experts and iv) sustainability check-oriented is the most common type of decision-support tools. These (and others) results could support both companies, researchers and governments in updating the current knowledge on CBMs and make them adoptable for practitioners from different industrial contexts.
Article
In times of climate change, biodiversity loss, or growing natural resource scarcity, the circular business model (CBM) concept is increasingly attractive, promoting the reorganization of current value creation architectures and supply chains toward a sustainable system of production and consumption. Driven by a vision of continued economic expansion and growth on a planet with finite natural resources, CBMs are endorsed by political institutions, multinational corporations, business consultancies, and academia. Some argue that CBM configurations contribute to a more holistic and radical change in the existing business logics than approaches that achieve incremental resource efficiency improvements. However, how “holistic” and “radical” are CBMs theoretically constituted in academia if we consider the deep structural and paradigmatic shifts in societies necessary to deal with the challenges associated with the Anthropocene? Prior studies do not examine the inherent normative settings and the operational change approaches beneath CBM concepts. To reconstruct the theoretical foundations of CBMs critically, the recent CBM body of academic literature is systematically reviewed according to (1) the legitimacy of CBMs (why should it be done) (2) the modes of value creation and offerings (what should be done), and (3) the core principles of CBM integration into daily business (how should it be done). From this synthesis, the predominant notion of sustainability behind the CBM concept can be revealed. This study argues contemporary scientifically constructed CBMs need to be reconsidered if they are intended to contribute to a profound economic transition toward sustainability. Hence, the paper shows how principles from more “holistic”, “radical”, and pluralistic economic approaches can widen CBMs and how future research can help to diversify the concept.
Article
Despite the growing number of studies on eco-innovation, the measurement of the specific financial resources applied to the eco-innovation process by firms and its internal management have not been thoroughly elucidated to date. Therefore, the main objectives of this study is to define, classify, and measure different dimensions of financial resources applied to eco-innovation by firms and to analyse the influence of business' technological and environmental management capabilities in the efficient allocation of these resources to undertake investments in eco-innovation. Resource amounts and their quality, availability and public nature are measured using a novel approach that addresses the study of their different aspects as a whole. A partial least square structural equation model (PLS-SEM) on a sample of Spanish companies shows that different dimensions of financial resources influence the eco-innovative investment and the internal management of eco-innovation.
Chapter
The purpose of this chapter is to outline the development of the idea of "stakeholder management" as it has come to be applied in strategic management. We begin by developing a brief history of the concept. We then suggest that traditionally the stakeholder approach to strategic management has several related characteristics that serve as distinguishing features. We review recent work on stakeholder theory and suggest how stakeholder management has affected the practice of management. We end by suggesting further research questions.
Chapter
THE CAPITALIST SYSTEM is under siege. In recent years business increasingly has been viewed as a major cause of social, environmental, and economic problems. Companies are widely perceived to be prospering at the expense of the broader community.
Article
The circular economy (CE) can be a driver for sustainability and CE can be promoted and supported by the creation of new and innovative business models, which embed CE principles into their value propositions throughout the value chains. This study focuses on the environmental value propositions of the CE business models. The term environmental value proposition refers here to an absolute value being a promise of environmental improvement, which a company provides to the environment by its impacts throughout the whole value chain. The aim of this study is to outline a framework for evaluating the environmental value propositions of CE business models. The framework consists of an environmental value propositions table (EVPT) and a step-by-step approach towards an evaluation process. The framework was tested in three CE business model cases. The outlined framework enables a better understanding of circular economy principles, combining them with the environmental value proposition. With the framework, companies can plan and design new CE business models or they can verify intended environmental benefits and analyse their contribution to sustainability. The biggest challenges, when applying the framework, were related to the estimation of environmental benefits gained from the environmental value propositions at the system level. In the future, intensive scientific work should concentrate on developing environmental assessment methods specifically for companies developing new CE business models.
Book
This book was originally published by Macmillan in 1936. It was voted the top Academic Book that Shaped Modern Britain by Academic Book Week (UK) in 2017, and in 2011 was placed on Time Magazine's top 100 non-fiction books written in English since 1923. Reissued with a fresh Introduction by the Nobel-prize winner Paul Krugman and a new Afterword by Keynes’ biographer Robert Skidelsky, this important work is made available to a new generation. The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money transformed economics and changed the face of modern macroeconomics. Keynes’ argument is based on the idea that the level of employment is not determined by the price of labour, but by the spending of money. It gave way to an entirely new approach where employment, inflation and the market economy are concerned. Highly provocative at its time of publication, this book and Keynes’ theories continue to remain the subject of much support and praise, criticism and debate. Economists at any stage in their career will enjoy revisiting this treatise and observing the relevance of Keynes’ work in today’s contemporary climate.
Article
In this study, we examine the diversity of sustainable business models adopted by the largest global corporations — those listed in the S&P 500 index — over the period 2005–2014. We examine press release communications during this period, which represent public data about business-relevant events. We expect that examining this communication can reveal longitudinal patterns in the adoption of sustainable business activities and models. Empirically, we utilize academic and practitioner expert panels to build a set of keywords across nine sustainable business model archetypes and utilize automated content analysis to examine the breadth and nature of a firm's sustainable business activities and practices. We find evidence of the increasing prominence of different types of sustainable business models over time. In particular, the results show that large capitalized firms have mostly adopted the environmentally-oriented archetypes, and to much lesser extent the societal and organizational ones.
Article
Improving product durability and reparability can save natural resources and money for consumers but may not always be in the best interest of all manufacturers. With the emergence of the circular economy as an important policy objective in the European Union (EU), there is renewed interest in policies to promote durability and address planned obsolescence. Different legislative approaches are currently used to provide incentives for design for durability and reparability at the EU and Member State levels. The EU has started to regulate durability through the Ecodesign Directive, whereas Member States have made use of other legal approaches such as longer consumer warranties, the criminalization of planned obsolescence and measures to incentivize the availability of spare parts. In this contribution, we review some of the legislation in place and discuss benefits and disadvantages of different legal approaches.
Article
Most of the world's poor live in developing markets and face unmet needs in core areas such as education, health, energy, sanitation and financial services. This offers businesses a vast opportunity for growth as these economies emerge from low-income to middle-income status. Social businesses in particular address a social need while generating profits typically reinvested into the business itself, but there is limited understanding of the ways through which social businesses achieve scale. This paper investigates how social businesses can scale up. First, we define scaling up as “increasing the number of customers or members of a business as well as expanding its offer and maximising its revenues until it reaches millions of people.” Second, using three in-depth case studies of social businesses that successfully scaled up according to these definitions, BRAC, Aravind and Amul, we identify scaling up strategies for social businesses. We identified market penetration, market development, product development and diversification as key strategies at different stages of business maturity. We find that there are two ways of increasing income generated that are linked to these four strategies: increasing revenue per stream and diversifying revenue streams. Our findings give insight to companies aiming to pursue social businesses and adds to the sparse literature on scaling up social businesses. A fruitful future research avenue would be to investigate the best sequence for applying these scaling strategies across companies and sectors over time.
Article
Drawing on the eco-innovation and resource-based view, this research attempts to contribute to the eco-innovation-performance debate by examining the effects of eco-innovation on business performance. In particular, we propose that the eco-innovation–performance relationship is contingent on environmental orientation and resources commitment. The analysis of 83 green-oriented SMEs in New Zealand suggests that eco-innovation has a positive effect on business performance. More interestingly, the findings show although environmental orientation does not directly influence business performance, it enhances the positive effect of eco-innovation on business performance. The results further suggest that green-oriented firms will reap more performance benefit of eco-innovation when they commit more organizational resources.
Article
Most of the world's poor live in developing markets and face unmet needs in core areas such as education, health, energy, sanitation and financial services. This offers businesses a vast opportunity for growth as these economies emerge from low-income to middle-income status. Social businesses in particular address a social need while generating profits typically reinvested into the business itself, but there is limited understanding of the ways through which social businesses achieve scale. This paper investigates how social businesses can scale up. First, we define scaling up as “increasing the number of customers or members of a business as well as expanding its offer and maximising its revenues until it reaches millions of people.” Second, using three in-depth case studies of social businesses that successfully scaled up according to these definitions, BRAC, Aravind and Amul, we identify scaling up strategies for social businesses. We identified market penetration, market development, product development and diversification as key strategies at different stages of business maturity. We find that there are two ways of increasing income generated that are linked to these four strategies: increasing revenue per stream and diversifying revenue streams. Our findings give insight to companies aiming to pursue social businesses and adds to the sparse literature on scaling up social businesses. A fruitful future research avenue would be to investigate the best sequence for applying these scaling strategies across companies and sectors over time.
Article
Although much has been written about value in coopetition initiatives, the dynamics of value creation and appropriation remain poorly articulated. This paper explores the types of value and the dynamics of value creation and appropriation when competitors cooperate.The research provides some suggestions towards semantic clarity and introduces new dimensions to the existing value creation and appropriation literature. We also present the Coopetition Value Matrix (CVM), an expanded typology that aids in the understanding of value dynamics in coopetition. Constructing the CVM required the incorporation of stakeholder theory and the concept of socio-environmental value, two aspects that are under-explored in coopetition research.We applied the CVM to a case of environmental coopetition in the South African wine industry, which provided us with empirical illustrations of the dynamic interaction of different types of value.
Article
The transition within business from a linear to a circular economy brings with it a range of practical challenges for companies. The following question is addressed: What are the product design and business model strategies for companies that want to move to a circular economy model? This paper develops a framework of strategies to guide designers and business strategists in the move from a linear to a circular economy. Building on Stahel, the terminology of slowing, closing, and narrowing resource loops is introduced. A list of product design strategies, business model strategies, and examples for key decision-makers in businesses is introduced, to facilitate the move to a circular economy. This framework also opens up a future research agenda for the circular economy.
Article
This paper explores a discrepancy between what the literature says about sustainability and how sustainability is actually practiced. Our analysis reveals that we are in a transition era in which firms incrementally offset—rather than eliminate—their negative impacts on the environment and society. We also argue that external stakeholders have yet to create the conditions that would compel firms to become truly sustainable. We further find that a firm's response to external pressure to become truly sustainable greatly depends on its capabilities. For large firms, the decision to become truly sustainable is driven by their ability to manage external stakeholders' expectations, with the most innovative of large firms remaining unsustainable even in the long term. In contrast, small innovative firms guide their decision-making based on their internal readiness to change and therefore will be the first to reach true sustainability. Finally, and regardless of size, firms that lack an innovation capability are unlikely to become truly sustainable; they will struggle to survive the transition era. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Article
This paper provides a theory of private politics in which an activist seeks to change the production practices of a firm for the purpose of redistribution to those whose interests it supports. The source of the activists's influence is the possibility of support for its cause by the public. The paper also addresses the issue of corporate social responsibility by distinguishing among corporate redistribution as motivated by profit maximization, altruism, and threats by the activist. Private politics and corporate social responsibility not only have a direct effect on the costs of the firm, but also have a strategic effect by altering the competitive positions of firms in an industry. From an integrated-strategy perspective the paper investigates the strategic implications of private politics and corporate social responsibility for the strategies of rival firms when one or both are targets of an activist campaign. Implications for empirical analysis are derived from the theory.
Article
In recent years we have seen the first signs of a paradigm shift in environmental public policy. While traditional policy has predominantly targeted industrial production, newer approaches offer a more systemic perspective, where the role of consumption is put at the centre. However, this change is not yet well reflected in actual policy making. An evaluation of existing policy instruments for sustainable consumption and production demonstrates that the majority of policy instruments in EU aim to improve the ecoefficiency of production processes and products, and hence only indirectly address consumption. The aggregate environmental impacts of industrialised economies appear to be on the rise, and this trend will hardly be reversed unless more efforts are put into changing the patterns and levels of consumption. There are however several barriers towards such developments. These include lack of systemic perspective in current policy developments, the reigning paradigm of economic growth, the non-integrative nature of policy tools, and lack of effective instruments for addressing consumption patterns and levels. Unless these problems are addressed, it will be extremely difficult to initiate system level changes in society and stimulate institutional and behavioural changes towards sustainable consumption. This chapter discusses the complexity of the consumption challenge and policies to achieve more sustainable consumption patterns, and provides some reasons for why the progress has been slow. The main argument is that sustainable consumption is a complex issue that requires the development of policy packages consisting of policy tools that affect various stakeholders and comprise various types of instruments: regulatory, economic and information-based. A relevant issue concerns the role of governmental intervention: moving towards more sustainable systems of consumption and production may require a shift from governing to governance, where the role of governments change away from controlling functions towards more participation and collaboration.
Book
Providing a much-needed critique of Corporate Social Responsibility (Csr) practice and scholarship, this book seeks to redress Csr advocacy, from a political and critical perspective. A strident approach backed up by extensive use of case studies presents the argument that most Csr-related activity aims to gain legitimacy from consumers and employees, and therefore furthers the exploitative and colonizing agenda of the corporation. By examining Csr in the context of the political economy of late capitalism, the book puts the emphasis back on the fact that most large corporations are fundamentally driven by profit maximization, making Csr initiatives merely another means to this end. Rather than undermining or challenging unsustainable corporate practices Csr is exposed as an ideological practice that actually upholds the prominence of such practices.
Article
Despite much progress, scholarship on organizations and strategic management remains unduly reliant on economic models such as the industrial organization (IO) market structure-based analysis. The focus of such models is on price-output determination by firms and the economy-wide efficient allocation of scarce resources, under conditions of full knowledge and certainty. This limits their usefulness for students of organizations who have wider concerns and also focus on organizations, as opposed to just markets. In this article, we aim to provide a framework for analysing the most fundamental, even existential, issue of organization studies and strategic management scholarship. This is whether and how the pursuit of value capture from economic agents who perceive that they possess appropriable value creating advantages, capabilities and action potential, can motivate the emergence of organizations and their strategies and actions intended to capture socially co-created value in conditions of real life. To do so, we explore (the co-evolution of) value capture and creation and their relationship to organizational sustainable advantage (SA). We delve into the nature, determinants and relationship between organizational value capture and creation and explore causal pathways, trade-offs and co-evolution, as well as vehicles through which SA can be effected in an evolving and uncertain environment. We also discuss implications for managerial practice, limitations and future research opportunities.
Article
Much social theory takes for granted the core conceit of modern culture, that modern actors - individuals, organizations, nation states - are autochthonous and natural entities, no longer really embedded in culture. Accordingly, while there is much abstract metatheory about "actors" and their "agency," there is arguably little theory about the topic. This article offers direct arguments about how the modern (European, now global) cultural system constructs the modern actor as an authorized agent for various interests via an ongoing relocation into society of agency originally located in transcendental authority or in natural forces environing the social system. We see this authorized agentic capability as an essential feature of what modern theory and culture call an "actor," and one that, when analyzed, helps greatly in explaining a number of otherwise anomalous or little analyzed features of modern individuals, organizations, and states. These features include their isomorphism and standardization, their internal decoupling, their extraordinarily complex structuration, and their capacity for prolific collective action.
Article
In this article I provide a critical perspective on governing the global corporation. While the papers in the 2009 special issue of Business Ethics Quarterly explore the political role of corporations I argue that they lack a sophisticated analysis of power across institutional and actor networks. The argument that corporate engagement with deliberative democracy can enhance the legitimacy of corporations does not take into account the effects of institutional, material and discursive forms of power that determine legitimacy criteria. As a result corporate versions of citizenship mediate versions of social responsibility and morality, which are reflected in the institutional and political economic norms that are produced by this power/knowledge. In order to overcome the limits of corporate social responsibility there is a need to develop more democratic forms of global governance of corporations. A radical revisioning of democratic governance would also need to overcome the limits posed by sovereignty and would require new forms of multi-actor and multi-level translocal governance arrangements in an attempt to create forms of power that are more compatible with the principles of economic democracy.
Article
In this paper we provide a critical analysis of political CSR. As an extension of deliberative democracy political CSR is seen as corporate efforts to respond to global environmental and social challenges. We argue that political CSR does not take into account the needs of marginalized and vulnerable stakeholder groups. Based on our critique we develop a multi-level translocal governance framework from the perspective of marginalized stakeholders, particularly Indigenous communities, that can enable a more responsive approach to CSR. We conclude by discussing implications for theory and practice and by providing directions for future research.
Article
The soaring popularity of business practices in the social sector has elicited numerous calls from academics and practitioners to adopt appropriate methodologies to quantify and compare social value creation. Contributing scholars consider it a great if not impossible challenge to compare social value creation of different, unrelated heterogonous interventions. We help bridge this research gap by developing a conceptual framework that allows us to compare the effectiveness of social interventions serving the different needs of different treatment groups in different socioeconomic and institutional contexts. We do so by bringing insights from both the literature on subjective well-being and the literature on organizational effectiveness theory into not-for-profit and social entrepreneurship research, as well as into the literature on program evaluation.