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Towards a framework for sustaining Green IT initiatives: an empirical investigation

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With several studies investigating the adoption of Green IT and the factors that lead to its successful adoption, it is important to look into the continuity of Green IT initiatives in the long run. We investigate the factors that contribute to the continuity of Green IT efforts using resource-based explanations and a natural resource-based view. We also devise a method to classify firms into Sustainers and Non-Sustainers from the Program sustainability view and literature. With Green IT data (primary and secondary) collected from Indian firms, we use Discriminant analysis to identify the key factors that distinguish between Sustainers and Non-Sustainers. The analysis revealed that the organizational Green IT system, organizational flexibility, Green IT service adoption, and Green IT process innovation became significant discriminators between sustainers and non-sustainers.
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Information Technology and Management (2021) 22:193–206
https://doi.org/10.1007/s10799-021-00332-w
Towards aframework forsustaining Green IT initiatives: anempirical
investigation
KrishnadasNanath1 · RRadhakrishnaPillai2
Accepted: 18 July 2021 / Published online: 26 July 2021
© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2021
Abstract
With several studies investigating the adoption of Green IT and the factors that lead to its successful adoption, it is important
to look into the continuity of Green IT initiatives in the long run. We investigate the factors that contribute to the continu-
ity of Green IT efforts using resource-based explanations and a natural resource-based view. We also devise a method to
classify firms into Sustainers and Non-Sustainers from the Program sustainability view and literature. With Green IT data
(primary and secondary) collected from Indian firms, we use Discriminant analysis to identify the key factors that distinguish
between Sustainers and Non-Sustainers. The analysis revealed that the organizational Green IT system, organizational flex-
ibility, Green IT service adoption, and Green IT process innovation became significant discriminators between sustainers
and non-sustainers.
Keywords Green IT· Program sustainability· Organizational flexibility· Discriminant analysis
1 Introduction
With the growing awareness of environmental issues, organi-
zations have started realizing the importance of sustainabil-
ity. Given the impact of Information Technology on today’s
business, it is one of the critical areas to be considered for
the study on ecological sustainability due to its revolution-
ary effects [17]. The intersection of IT and Sustainability
has led to the development of Green IT. Green IT has three
critical domains- The negative impact of computing, IT as a
tool for environmental awareness, and Business Value [56,
4]. The literature has explored several important factors for
the successful adoption of Green IT [5, 49].
While the literature has explored the factors of adop-
tion in-depth, there is a lack of theory-driven studies [81,
44] that look into deeper adoption issues and continuity of
these initiatives in the long run. This research looks into the
program continuity perspective of Green IT programs that
could help sustain Green IT in the long term. The objective
is to understand the factors contributing to the long-term
success of Green IT and to evaluate the continuity of Green
IT initiatives.
Sustaining programs and ensuring the continuity of
organizational initiatives is an emerging field, and different
studies have been conducted to develop a deeper understand-
ing of success factors. These factors cover various aspects
like project design and implementation, host organization,
and community [69]. Savaya etal. [66] listed the various
factors for the continuity of social programs in the long
run, like program flexibility, financial resources, program
evaluation, program champions, and others (not subjected
to empirical testing). However, the programs studied in this
domain are restricted to social and health plans, resulting in
the nascent stage of environmental programs. Green initia-
tives are essential aspects of corporate sustainability and
thus, should be conceptualized uniquely to identify the fac-
tors and develop a model. It is evident that the elements and
processes that foster continuity of environmental initiatives
are not sufficiently understood and addressed [47]. There-
fore, this study attempts to evaluate program continuity in
Green IT and develop a framework to find out the factors
that ensure continuity in the long run.
In the domain of environmental programs, Bansal [7]
conducted a series of interviews to understand sustain-
able corporate development in the long run. It focused on
* Krishnadas Nanath
username.krishna@gmail.com; k.nanath@mdx.ac.ae
1 Middlesex University Dubai, Knowledge Park, Dubai,
UnitedArabEmirates
2 Indian Institute ofManagement, IIMK Campus P.O,
Kunnamangalam, Kozhikode, Kerala673570, India
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