Managing the Transition to a Sustainable Enterprise: Lessons from Frontrunner Companies

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Taylor & Francis, Aug 30, 2013 - Business & Economics - 256 pages
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Managing the transition towards sustainable enterprise is a daunting task for corporations and business leaders. Uniquely combining practice and theory, this textbook provides a management perspective, by considering the extent to which the 'business case' for sustainability can be proven. Drawing on examples from twenty frontrunner companies located in the Netherlands, it builds upon a unique research project in which CEOs and middle-managers gave access not only to their decision-making process, but also revealed how their perceptions shaped the transition process.

This book identifies four different archetypes of business cases and related business models that business students and managers can use to identify phases and related attitudes towards sustainability. Structured around this four phase model, the book provides in-depth analysis and insight into:

  • theoretical concepts and overview of the relevant literature
  • the business case for sustainability
  • behavioural characteristics of each phase and the typical barriers between them
  • more than seventy tipping points
  • the role and different categories of stakeholders; approaches to shaping stakeholder dialogue; effective engagement of stakeholders in each phase of transition
  • how companies move through the phases towards higher levels of sustainability
  • insights of employees of the 20 companies to illustrate whether the business case was really achieved
  • summary of the interventions and efforts which have proved successful in these companies.

In addition to being a source of inspiration for company managers, this book aims to offer students of vocational and academic institutions at undergraduate and postgraduate level insight into real-life transition processes towards sustainability.

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About the author (2013)

Rob van Tulder is Professor of International Business-Society Management at RSM Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

Rob van Tilburg is SeniorAdvisor at DHVRoyalHaskoning, The Netherlands.

Mara Francken is advisor at DHVRoyalHaskoning, The Netherlands.

Andrea da Rosa is Research Associate at the Partnerships Resource Centre RSM Erasmus University Rotterdam, The Netherlands.

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