Towards a Governance Structure for Sustainable Development
- ESRI Studies Series on the Environment
Edited by Raimund Bleischwitz and Peter Hennicke
Chapter 4: Sustainable business and consumption strategies
Justus von Geibler, Michael Kuhndt, Eberhard K. Seifert, Rainer Lucas, Sylvia Lorek and Raimund Bleischwitz
4. Sustainable business and consumption strategies Justus von Geibler, Michael Kuhndt, Eberhard K. Seifert, Rainer Lucas, Sylvia Lorek and Raimund Bleischwitz 4.1 INTRODUCTION The arena of policy makers is at the heart of the conclusions drawn in the previous chapter on emerging regulatory policies. Nevertheless, addressing policy makers does not necessarily presuppose that this arena holds sufficient steering capacities for any sustainable development of an economy and a society as a whole. Governance across multiple arenas implies rather that business bears responsibility for the economy and its various impacts on humans and nature. Analysing management tools for sustainable enterprises is a logical device following such a governance approach. Here, SMEs may be of special relevance as they often tend to be neglected while offering considerable potential for productivity increase. For the sustainability debate and the proposed eco-efficient services, these features lead to the acknowledgment of consumption and life styles too. Both arenas are addressed in the following chapter. 4.2 STRATEGIES FOR SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Introduction From industry’s perspective, framework conditions that governments set in the area of sustainable development have been changing over recent years. So far, conventional environmental approaches have almost predetermined the corporate response. With the emergence of emissions trading, other market-based instruments, voluntary approaches and the rest, in recent and coming years business is facing a wider range of response options. In order to benefit from the emerging flexibility, however, companies have to engage in formulating 116 Sustainable business and consumption strategies 117 strategies and implementing these...
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