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Environmentalism as a source of corporate competitive advantage
by Bridget Lyons
Interdisciplinary Environmental Review (IER), Vol. 2, No. 2, 2000


Abstract: The theory of corporate environmentalism has shifted dramatically over the past twenty years from a focus on compliance with environmental regulations to heightened environmental sensitivity. Increasing numbers of firms now incorporate environmental responsibility into mission statements and include an assessment of environmental impact in all aspects of decision making. Some firms, including Intel, Polaroid, and Monsanto, note that proactive environmentalism can be a source of competitive advantage. While this view is not a consensus throughout the business community, it is a philosophy which is gaining momentum in the United States and elsewhere. This paper examines environmentalism as a potential source of competitive advantage. Potential sources of competitive advantage are explored and numerous examples of corporate anecdotal evidence are provided which support the claim that firms can utilize environmentalism to create competitive advantage.

Online publication date: Mon, 13-May-2013


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