Business Models for Sustainability

Business Models for Sustainability

Peter E. Wells

With increasing awareness that innovative technology alone is insufficient to make sustainable lifestyles a reality, this book brings into sharp focus the need to create radical new business models. This insightful book provides a theoretically grounded but also realistic account of how the design of business models can be a critical component in the overall transition to sustainability, and one that transcends the usual focus on innovative technology.

Chapter 3: Examples of business model innovation in general practice

Peter E. Wells

Subjects: business and management, corporate social responsibility, strategic management


In Chapter 2 some of the literature on business models was reviewed. In summary the domination of the fairly narrow and traditional business school perspective, while itself unsurprising, has tended to result in an equally narrow and traditional view of the business as both an entity in and of itself, and of management as the exercise of prerogative in order to guide and shape the business model. Such a perspective is probably too limited when consideration is given to the ‘beyond the boundary’ challenges that sustainability brings, and perhaps tinges the endeavour with a degree of heroic rationality that cannot be justified. However, one of the strengths of the business model perspective and the literature that flows from it is that it does provide a good platform from which such heroic tales can be developed. These are the sagas of the modern era, the equivalent of the tales told by our forebears in the Mabinogion of Wales, the Norse Sagas of medieval Iceland, the epic adventures of Jason and the Argonauts, or the more recent fictional journeys of The Lord of the Rings. Stories or narratives of this type are an enduring and important feature of all cultures; in the world of business as much as any other. Inevitably, such narratives enjoy the comfort of post-hoc rationalisation, of the omission of the awkward facts that do not quite support the story as told.

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