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Article
Publication date: 2 October 2007

Roger A. Sedjo

This paper aims to examine the effects of the use of environmental easements and forest certification on the output of ecosystems services from private forestlands in the USA.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the effects of the use of environmental easements and forest certification on the output of ecosystems services from private forestlands in the USA.

Design/methodology/approach

The discussion of the changes in ownership and management of private forest lands in the USA is based on a review of the literature, the degree of recent activity in the innovative changes, and an assessment of the extent of ownership and management changes.

Findings

The use of environmental easements, resulting from ownership changes, and forest certification have facilitated, indeed mandated, forest management that is consistent with an increase in the provision of environmental and ecosystem services from private forests. The rapid expansion of environmental easements has been accommodated by the dramatic changes in forest ownership patterns in the USA, as traditional corporate ownerships have sold off large land areas to other private ownership types. Forest certification, which provides for improved management of ecosystem services, also has expanded rapidly in recent years.

Practical implications

This study suggests forest management to provide environmental and ecosystem services can be achieve through environmental easements and forest certification. These changes can occur as the result of environmental interests entering forest land markets and affixing easements to the land. This finding suggests an alternative to the approach to establishing separate markets for ecosystem services, as is often suggested, and requires no increased governmental actions or new regulations. Rather these improvements are driven by voluntary forest certification and/or environmental groups entering the private markets for forest lands.

Originality/value

This study suggests an alternative to the commonly held notion that separate markets for environmental and ecosystem services are required to increased their outputs. Rather, environmental easements and voluntary certification, in the face of changing ownership can provide the incentives for management changes that increase the outputs of environment and ecosystem services.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 18 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2000

Ilan Vertinsky and Dongsheng Zhou

Asymmetries in information, where sellers have more information than buyers about product qualities, may prevent firms from supplying some goods and services despite the…

Abstract

Asymmetries in information, where sellers have more information than buyers about product qualities, may prevent firms from supplying some goods and services despite the fact that consumers are willing to pay adequately for them. The frequency and importance of such market failures is growing with the increase in buyers’ interest in unobservable qualities (attributes) of products, including the nature of their production processes. Certification by credible third parties may reduce the frequency and mitigate consequences of market failures. Certification creates a variety of challenges for both marketers and regulators. In this paper, we examine the emergence of alternative domestic and international regulatory regimes for certifying some qualities of products and services. We explore the implications of these regimes and country and product characteristics to the formulation of international marketing strategies. We illustrate our findings through a case study of the forest products industry.

Details

International Marketing Review, vol. 17 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0265-1335

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Article
Publication date: 19 February 2018

Campbell Heggen, VG Sridharan and Nava Subramaniam

The purpose of this paper is to examine why firms governed by the same environmental management standards within an industry exhibit contrasting responses, with some…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine why firms governed by the same environmental management standards within an industry exhibit contrasting responses, with some adhering to the letter and others achieving the spirit behind the standards.

Design/methodology/approach

Using Arena et al. (2010) as an analytical schema to examine the institutional dynamics behind such contrasting responses, the paper analyses archival and interview data relating to firm strategy, control technology and human expertise in two contrasting Australian forestry firms.

Findings

The embedding and decoupling of environmental standards with a firm’s environmental management practices is influenced, first, by the extent to which founder directors and senior management integrate environmental responsibility with the underlying business motives and, second, by the use of organisational beliefs and values systems to institutionalise the integrated strategic rationality throughout the firm. Finally, informed by the institutionalised strategic rationality, the participation and expertise of actors across the organisational hierarchy determine the level to which the design and execution of the eco-control technologies move beyond merely monitoring compliance, and act to facilitate continuous improvement, knowledge integration and organisational learning at the operational level.

Originality/value

This paper responds to institutional theorists’ call for a holistic explanation that considers the interactions among several intra-organisational factors to explain the dynamics behind why some firms decouple while others do not, even though the firms exist in the same social and regulatory context.

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Article
Publication date: 9 June 2021

William Cook, Esther Turnhout and Séverine van Bommel

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) intends to promote responsible forestry through its certification scheme. The primary engine that drives this promotion is auditing…

Abstract

Purpose

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) intends to promote responsible forestry through its certification scheme. The primary engine that drives this promotion is auditing. Audits serve a dual purpose: they make forest managers accountable for their claim of meeting the FSC standard, and they make the actions of auditors and auditee account-able, or able to be put into an account. The latter of these is rarely investigated, despite it being crucial to understanding how FSC audits are done.

Design/methodology/approach

This article examines FSC forest certification audits as practices where the FSC standards gain meaning. In-depth analysis of these practices enables insight into how different values related to forest certification and auditing are articulated and negotiated in practice, characterizing particular modes of auditing. In this paper, the authors examine the practices of FSC forest management auditors in multi-day audits in Africa and in Spain. Their materials were analyzed and coded using Goffman’s elements of dramaturgy.

Findings

The authors’ findings show that auditing practices entail a series of nested performances in which the auditors and auditees interact together and in which front stage and back stage performances constantly alternate as auditors and auditees perform for each other and simultaneously for an absent audience.

Originality/value

The authors’ analysis demonstrates how in these performances, professional values related to following auditing rules and ensuring that audits are rendered account-able in a particular way take a prominent position. This risks overshadowing the accountability of the FSC system which is ultimately grounded in its ambition to improve forest conservation and management.

Details

Journal of Organizational Ethnography, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6749

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Article
Publication date: 20 July 2010

Ioannis Papadopoulos, Glykeria Karagouni, Marios Trigkas and Evanthia Platogianni

The purpose of this paper is to study the possibility of promoting certified timber coming from sustainable managed forests, in order to support Greek enterprises and the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the possibility of promoting certified timber coming from sustainable managed forests, in order to support Greek enterprises and the institutions of the Greek timber sector involved to apply effective green marketing methods and policies.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a prototype questionnaire, specifically structured for the aim of the research, 55 responses were collected from Greek timber enterprises in April 2009. The questionnaires were processed and analyzed with the statistical program SPSS of ver17.0, using descriptive statistics and correlation analysis. The main purpose was the investigation of knowledge, use and promotion of certified timber that emanates from forests under sustainable management, thus planning the green marketing.

Findings

The Greek enterprises of the timber sector expressed a great interest in the protection of forests all over the world, ranging from illegal loggings to their rational management. At the same time, in their overwhelming majority, they strongly support the certification of the sustainable management of Greek forests. These enterprises believe that the movement of green buildings has also reached Greece, albeit at a slow pace, and forecast that green consumers are prone to offer an additional percentage of about 6 per cent on price, in order to buy certified timber products. Companies trust to a high degree most institutions of higher education (universities and technological institutions) for the promotion of certified timber products and propose their publicity through newspapers and magazines, as well as through internet portals of close contact. Finally, the paper discusses reflections and forecasts on the growth of this new market of timber.

Practical implications

The results offer precious knowledge on the market of certified timber and its future developments in the following five years, which can assist both enterprises and the institutions involved in strategy forming and decision making, in order to gain an important share of the market of green consumers. The paper also proposes effective green marketing applications.

Originality/value

This is the first research on green marketing and the promotion of certified products of timber in the Greek market, while similar work is very limited even at an international level.

Details

EuroMed Journal of Business, vol. 5 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1450-2194

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Article
Publication date: 5 February 2020

Cordula Hinkes and Günter Peter

Sustainability certification of agricultural commodities might be one measure to ensure deforestation-free supply chains. The purpose of this paper is to add to previous…

Abstract

Purpose

Sustainability certification of agricultural commodities might be one measure to ensure deforestation-free supply chains. The purpose of this paper is to add to previous assessments of soy certification systems with respect to “zero deforestation” criteria by focusing on the aspect of traceability.

Design/methodology/approach

A conceptual framework for assessing certification systems is proposed based on a literature review. This concept is applied to 16 soy certification systems, considering previous studies and available chain-of-custody certification options.

Findings

Among the sample, five certification systems may contribute to ensuring deforestation-free soy supply chains, as they have relatively high “zero deforestation” and assurance requirements and support at least segregation. Other chain-of-custody systems are insufficient in terms of traceability, but still dominate the market.

Research limitations/implications

The assessment considers only certification systems that have been benchmarked according to criteria developed by the European feed industry. Regular updates and further assessments of certification systems for other commodities are recommended.

Practical implications

Supply chain actors and policymakers are informed about certification systems that may ensure deforestation-free sourcing. However, different factors influence the implementation of zero deforestation commitments, such as adverse effects, economic trade-offs and new certification and traceability concepts.

Social implications

The implementation of deforestation-free supply chains should contribute to achieving sustainable development goals. Potential adverse social effects need to be considered.

Originality/value

This study focuses on the so far rather neglected but essential aspect of traceability, which is required for ensuring deforestation-free sourcing along the whole supply chain.

Details

Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, vol. 11 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8021

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Article
Publication date: 20 November 2009

Mirja Mikkilä, Jussi Heinimö, Virgilio Panapanaan, Lassi Linnanen and Andre Faaij

The purpose of this paper is to outline a comprehensive picture of the coverage of various certification schemes and sustainability principles relating to the entire…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to outline a comprehensive picture of the coverage of various certification schemes and sustainability principles relating to the entire value‐added chain of biomass and bioenergy and comparing them accordingly.

Design/methodology/approach

A tri‐dimensional approach (sustainability issues; technical biomass conversion routes; physical trade flows) was developed for testing the coverage of various sustainability dimensions in different phases of the value‐added chain with the chosen certification schemes and sustainability principles.

Findings

Using the tri‐dimensional approach, a comparison of the chosen schemes and principles demonstrated that the application of existing schemes and the development of new ones have placed a major emphasis on the primary production of biomass. Economic and social dimensions related to biofuels and bioenergy processing and trade were either emphasised less or they were covered inadequately. In view of this, the schemes sometimes seem to ignore that the utilisation of renewable energy as such guarantee no positive or neutral climate impact and may not be economically sustainable, especially when bioenergy can often be more expensive than energy generated from fossil energy sources.

Originality/value

The analysis showed that the tri‐dimensional model is an applicable framework that could facilitate policy makers to formulate policies that comprehensively take into consideration the various sustainability dimensions throughout the entire value‐added chain, now and in the future. It can be applied to the future outlining and completion of certification schemes and sustainability principles for biomass and bioenergy, as well as in the testing of their applicability in the implementation.

Details

International Journal of Energy Sector Management, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6220

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Article
Publication date: 18 December 2020

Andreas Beckmann, Uthayasankar Sivarajah and Zahir Irani

Circular economy is presented as an approach to economic growth that is in line with sustainable development. However, the recent literature has highlighted the limits of…

Abstract

Purpose

Circular economy is presented as an approach to economic growth that is in line with sustainable development. However, the recent literature has highlighted the limits of the concept in terms of environmental sustainability. The study examines the relationship between circular economy and conservation of ecosystems, using a case study on the implications of a circular economy for Slovak forests and forest sector.

Design/methodology/approach

This study adopts a qualitative methodology through a focused review of the relevant literature on circular economy and sustainable development and primary data gathered through semi-structured interviews with 15 experts and practitioners in the forest sector, forest conservation and circular economy context, both from within as well as outside of Slovakia.

Findings

The study finds that the forestry sector has an important role to play in a shift to a circular economy in Slovakia, with significant opportunities for improved efficiency as well as substitution of wood for non-renewable resources. There is also growing potential for ecosystem stewardship and restoration. However, the increased application of biomass could crowd out other needs, including for biodiversity. Safeguarding these services depends ultimately on good governance.

Originality/value

The study highlights that circular economy taken in a narrow focus on resource efficiency is insufficient to ensure environmental sustainability but rather needs to be set within the broader environmental and social context.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

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Article
Publication date: 2 January 2014

Michelle Rodrigue

– This paper aims to study the informational dynamics that take place between a firm and its stakeholders with respect to corporate environmental management.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the informational dynamics that take place between a firm and its stakeholders with respect to corporate environmental management.

Design/methodology/approach

The analysis is based on a case study contrasting environmental information reported by the case firm with environmental information about the firm disclosed by four stakeholder groups or their representatives (governments, the community, environmental non-governmental organizations and investors) over three years. The information flow of disclosure is also considered.

Findings

The results suggest that the informational dynamics are composed of multiple related patterns. The patterns range from correspondence between disclosures to stakeholders complementing or contradicting corporate disclosures. Different patterns are associated with different levels of interactions from stakeholders, who are most involved when they combine disclosure patterns around key environmental issues for the forest industry. Limited interactions are observed from the firm, suggesting a symbolic engagement within the dynamics and a strategic accountability approach.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations are found in the focus on disclosure outlets without examination of their production and reception, and in the inherent nature of the documents collected to represent each perspective. Some stakeholder groups were excluded from the study due to data unavailability.

Originality/value

This paper offers an in-depth analysis of firm-stakeholders interactions with respect to environmental reporting and maps the information flow of their disclosure.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2006

Michael von Kutzschenbach and Carl Brønn

The co‐orientation model is used as a vehicle for framing the perceptions of different stakeholder groups. This study aims to operationalize the principles of sustainable…

Abstract

Purpose

The co‐orientation model is used as a vehicle for framing the perceptions of different stakeholder groups. This study aims to operationalize the principles of sustainable development in the chain‐of‐custody and measure two selected stakeholder groups' perceptions of their importance.

Design/methodology/approach

The co‐orientation model provides guidance for improving communications and stakeholder relationships by identifying different co‐orientation states of the communicating parties. The implications for the development of effective sustainability communication strategies for organizations are discussed.

Findings

Sustainability communications requires a systematic approach in which all the communication activities are directed toward achieving increased understanding between the organization and its relevant stakeholders about the issues. The co‐orientation model enables the identification of unique initiatives to overcome the communication problems caused by the different co‐orientation states. This insight can be utilized by communication managers to fine‐tune their organization's communication strategy to be more sensitive to the specific requirements of the communication situation. Some of the recommendations to manage the communication process include assumption surfacing, orgainzational reflection, improved stakeholder management and dialogue.

Originality/value

The co‐orientation model is a quite complex concept. This study tries to use the model in a concret case and develops different approaches for improving communications and stakeholder relationships by identifying different co‐orientation states of the communicating parties.

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

Keywords

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