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Book part
Publication date: 7 February 2013

Helen Goworek and Petra Molthan-Hill

This chapter examines the development and implementation of a sustainability module at Nottingham Trent University (NTU) in the UK and assesses how this is embedded within…

Abstract

This chapter examines the development and implementation of a sustainability module at Nottingham Trent University (NTU) in the UK and assesses how this is embedded within the undergraduate business curriculum. The objectives are to explain the background to the development of the module in the context of the University as a whole and to examine the issues and potential benefits concerning its implementation. The chapter explores how sustainability can be integrated effectively within the curriculum and focuses on a module for the academic year 2011/2012 ‘The Sustainable Organisation’ (SO) and its underlying principles from the perspectives of members of the module team. It also reflects on previous and concurrent modules incorporating sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR). The module's connections with industry and related research will also be discussed within the chapter. In conclusion, the wider implications of offering the SO module within a business school will be assessed.

Details

Education and Corporate Social Responsibility International Perspectives
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78190-590-6

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Article
Publication date: 8 July 2014

Lynn Oxborrow and Clare Brindley

The apparel industry has acted as a microcosm of global industrial change, exemplified by changes in structure, relationships and technologies. The purpose of this paper…

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Abstract

Purpose

The apparel industry has acted as a microcosm of global industrial change, exemplified by changes in structure, relationships and technologies. The purpose of this paper is to identify the risk drivers, the changing supply strategies and the relationships suppliers are developing or exiting from, notably because of the increasing power of retailers in the fast fashion sector.

Design/methodology/approach

The research adopts a qualitative, case study methodology of the Leicester (UK) based suppliers who operate in the fast fashion market.

Findings

Rich narrative data shows that the apparel supply chain has changed. The small and medium size enterprises (SMEs) have had more success in managing the upstream rather than the downstream, supported by their move towards a more design driven system. This willingness has been motivated by their wish to “own” the relationship with the buyer but this has not always resulted in greater power or returns and relationships have continued to be fractious.

Research limitations/implications

There is a lack of research on supply chains, especially, apparel supply chains that focus on reality rather than best practice. This paper addresses the power relationships that are exerted in the supply chain and the cultural aspects that influence them, which have hitherto lacked academic focus.

Originality/value

Adds empirical data to the theoretical work in the area, specifically, the shape of SME supply chains and the nature of risk in supplying fast fashion. It identifies the unequal power base of the supply chain and SMEs’ strategies for coping, or not, to some extent dependent on their culture.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 26 July 2013

Lynn Oxborrow and Clare Brindley

A recent study has asserted that businesses need to adopt “eco‐advantage”. This paper aims to explore the viability of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) achieving…

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1997

Abstract

Purpose

A recent study has asserted that businesses need to adopt “eco‐advantage”. This paper aims to explore the viability of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) achieving “eco‐advantage” by exploring their understanding of sustainability issues, how they adopt and innovate in terms of sustainability and the benefits and obstacles they face.

Design/methodology/approach

The research approach is exploratory, comprised of 15 SME embedded cases based in the UK. The cases are participants in short interventions in sustainable product and process design as a part of a university knowledge transfer project, representing the overall case. Cases are based on interviews with company participants and collaborating academics, supplemented by documentary and observational evidence.

Findings

The results build on the work on “eco‐advantage” found in a recent study, highlighting marketing, rather than compliance issues as a catalyst for change. The newly aware SME enters a development process which involves cumulative capabilities, gaining a nascent inner confidence, which includes espousing wider sustainable values.

Research limitations/implications

The results reveal the scope and challenges for SMEs to adopt more sustainable practices, encompassing innovations and a broad set of capabilities. Further research points to the need to monitor benefits as well as inputs in evaluating sustainability improvements and to consider longitudinal business sustainability issues.

Originality/value

The paper informs the emerging debate on sustainability in SMEs, providing a rich source of data to enhance the provision of business support and knowledge transfer activities, where a more holistic and customised approach is required to realise the real environmental and economic benefits accrued from implementing sustainable improvements.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 16 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 5 October 2012

Lynn Oxborrow and Clare Brindley

Since the 1990s the fashion industry has reflected the issues generally arising in the manufacturing sector, namely rapid and deep structural changes, the development of…

Abstract

Purpose

Since the 1990s the fashion industry has reflected the issues generally arising in the manufacturing sector, namely rapid and deep structural changes, the development of new supply chain relationships, ICT impacts and increasing globalisation with the attendant issues of ethical sourcing, off‐shoring, new emerging markets and recessionary ripples. This paper focuses on one particular aspect of the fashion industry, namely the apparel sector, and in particular “fast fashion” to explore the issues arising for the SMEs in the supply chain.

Design/methodology/approach

The research adopts a qualitative methodology and is longitudinal in nature, spanning five years from August 2006. The first stage of the research is reported here, where a series of focussed interview scenarios were conducted over an 18‐month period. The sample of 12 SMEs was a convenience one, drawn from the 30 participants who took part in a business‐to‐business event in Leicester, a geographical location which acts as a microcosm of the apparel industry. Interviews were used to elicit narrative data about what was actually happening in these apparel supply chains.

Findings

The apparel supply chain has changed significantly due to recessionary ripples and structural changes. SMEs have had more success in managing the upstream rather than the downstream relationships and relationships between buyers and suppliers continue to be fractious. Innovation has occurred but is hampered by the relationships that persist. Culture has proved to be a key dimension.

Research limitations/implications

There is a lack of research on supply chains, especially, apparel supply chains that focus on reality rather than best practice. The relationships that are exerted in the supply chain and the cultural aspects that influence them have also lacked academic focus.

Originality/value

The paper adds empirical data to the paucity of theoretical work in the area by the construction of a model that articulates the key factors (relationships, innovation and culture) that operate within cluster supply chains. It also identifies the unequal relationships and how SMEs devise strategies to cope or not, to some extent dependent on their culture.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 40 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 5 March 2021

Antonio Thomas, Giuseppe Scandurra and Alfonso Carfora

Pursuing sustainable development has become a necessity for all types of businesses, owing to the increasing sensitivity of stakeholders towards pollution and…

Abstract

Purpose

Pursuing sustainable development has become a necessity for all types of businesses, owing to the increasing sensitivity of stakeholders towards pollution and environmental degradation related to economic activities. To sustain this approach, investments supporting green innovations (GIs) are required. The paper investigates how stakeholders affect the choices of companies to pursue sustainable development objectives through the use of GIs.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample of 222 innovative Italian SMEs was collected and analysed using the partial least squares structural equation modelling technique and the importance performance map analysis.

Findings

The authors found that the stakeholders with not-contractual ties with SMEs affect GIs. Among stakeholders with not-contractual ties only workforce represents a strong stimulus to eco-innovate. Anyway, contrary to expectations, public administrations exert a negative influence; that is, they appear to hinder SMEs approach towards GIs.

Practical implications

This paper contributes to filling the knowledge gaps about the factors stimulating innovative SMEs' investments in GIs. Specifically, by analysing the stakeholders' influences, many policy indications emerge, such as extending facilities and regulations, encouraging partnerships and networking and attracting private and institutional investors.

Originality/value

Until now, the prominent interest of researchers and policymakers has been focused almost exclusively on large manufacturing corporations because of their higher ecological footprints and the belief that SMEs are supposed to be mainly followers rather than first adopters of innovations. But in many international areas, the role of SMEs is widely predominant, and these SMEs chiefly operate in the service sectors.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 1954

Aarhus Kommunes Biblioteker (Teknisk Bibliotek), Ingerslevs Plads 7, Aarhus, Denmark. Representative: V. NEDERGAARD PEDERSEN (Librarian).

Abstract

Aarhus Kommunes Biblioteker (Teknisk Bibliotek), Ingerslevs Plads 7, Aarhus, Denmark. Representative: V. NEDERGAARD PEDERSEN (Librarian).

Details

Aslib Proceedings, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0001-253X

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