New Business Models for a Low-Carbon Future: Case Studies from the Energy Sector
Social and Sustainable Enterprise: Changing the Nature of Business
ISBN: 978-1-78190-254-7, eISBN: 978-1-78190-255-4
Publication date: 6 November 2012
Purpose – The UK energy market is in a period of significant transition, with a target of cutting carbon emissions by at least 80% by 2050. There is widespread agreement that the current policy landscape needs to change if this ambitious target is to be achieved. However, the current business structure also requires a radical overhaul. This chapter explores the new business models that are being introduced to serve commercial and domestic customers.
Methodology/approach – This chapter presents a case study of the UK energy sector that draws on the first author's active engagement in the UK's energy market and thus participant observation. The discussion is framed around relevant material from the entrepreneurship and innovation literatures, with a particular focus on entrepreneurial opportunities created by policy.
Findings – In a rapidly changing policy environment, new ideas, technologies and business models are emerging. A range of new business models evident in the market are explored. These include new forms of service delivery, market-making models and finance models.
Social implications – The chapter highlights the importance of entrepreneurship and innovation in the delivery of a low-carbon economy. It also explores the role of policymakers in promoting more environmentally sustainable approaches in this industry sector.
Originality/value of chapter – The chapter presents a novel, industry-specific case study. It contributes to extant knowledge on sustainable business through its focus on the complex interaction of policy and entrepreneurship as well as some of the business models required for the transition to a low-carbon future.
Hinnells, M. and O’Neil, I. (2012), "New Business Models for a Low-Carbon Future: Case Studies from the Energy Sector", Underwood, S., Blundel, R., Lyon, F. and Schaefer, A. (Ed.) Social and Sustainable Enterprise: Changing the Nature of Business (Contemporary Issues in Entrepreneurship Research, Vol. 2), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 49-73. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2040-7246(2012)0000002007
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited