Managing Natural Resources
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Managing Natural Resources

Organizational Strategy, Behaviour and Dynamics

Edited by Gerard George and Simon J.D. Schillebeeckx

Managing the natural environment is fundamental to many businesses, yet management scholars have understudied how natural resources are acquired and deployed, how they constrain and challenge strategy and innovation, and how they differ from more conventionally studied resources in management. This book captures leading and thought-provoking conceptual and empirical contributions on how organizations (ought to) interact with such natural resources. The authors apply and extend management theories to the natural resource context, thereby opening up multiple avenues for future research.
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Chapter 2: Scarcity in the twenty-first century: how the resource nexus affects management

Simon J.D. Schillebeeckx, Mark Workman and Charles Dean

Abstract

We review how scarcity of natural resources has been framed over time and propose a new frame that ties the availability of source resources to the capacity of sink resources to absorb negative externalities caused by resource extraction and use alongside a techno-economic, market and socio-political dimension. This new frame builds on and further develops the emerging construct of the resource nexus, which focuses on the interdependence between natural resources, ecosystems and social systems. We then focus on the question of what this new frame means for organizations that operate within a resource nexus ‘environment’, and reinterpret the meaning of dynamism, complexity and uncertainty within a natural environment context. We end this chapter with an exploration of what this means for management and suggest that developing anti-fragility, boosting flexibility and supporting openness and collective action will become important strategic considerations for those organizations that seek to thrive in the resource nexus.

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