Drivers, Trends, and Outlook in Sustainable Development: Comparing Best Practices in Northern Europe (Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden) and California
Principles and Strategies to Balance Ethical, Social and Environmental Concerns with Corporate Requirements
ISBN: 978-1-78190-627-9, eISBN: 978-1-78190-628-6
Publication date: 11 April 2013
Purpose – The purpose of this research is to compare trends, drivers, and best sustainable development (SD) practices in the Nordic region and California, USA.Design/methodology/approach – Four research propositions are explored: (1) SD is driven by governmental, economic, and social/cultural influences. (2) Social democracy and mixed economies in the Nordic region influence SD differently than the free market system of the United States. (3) The profit-centered, short-term view in the United States impacts SD differently than the longer-term approach in the Nordic region. (4) The egalitarian culture in the Nordic region influences SD differently than the entrepreneurial culture in the United States. The study incorporates a comprehensive literature review, 34 field interviews and research observations in the United States and the Nordic region.Findings – California and the Nordics have similar market economies where SD is largely driven by private sector; however, the role of government more directly influences SD in the Nordic region. Also, the profit-centered, entrepreneurial view of the United States drives innovation in SD based on short-term profitability gains, which ultimately hinders long-term solutions. Alternatively, the egalitarian culture in the Nordic region manifests in more focused and quicker adoption of SD policies. Lastly, the Nordics have a broad range of SD goals and a competitive advantage in key SD technologies. Conversely, California pursues a large variety of technologies without clearly defined goals that tend to be less effective than the Nordic countries.Originality/value of chapter – The chapter identified similarities and differences in SD trends, best practices, policies, and attitudes: California compared to Nordic countries.
Branum, K.A., Cepeda, L.E., Howsmon, C. and Zhuplev, A. (2013), "Drivers, Trends, and Outlook in Sustainable Development: Comparing Best Practices in Northern Europe (Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden) and California", Leonard, L. and Alejandra Gonzalez-Perez, M. (Ed.) Principles and Strategies to Balance Ethical, Social and Environmental Concerns with Corporate Requirements (Advances in Sustainability and Environmental Justice, Vol. 12), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 119-160. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2051-5030(2013)0000012011
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