Innovation for sustainability—or sustainability-oriented innovation—is a way for firms to improve their competitiveness while also facilitating the greater good, comments Paavo Ritala in the first chapter of “Innovation for Sustainability: Business Transformations towards a Better World”.
He continues: “Research and practice have shown that both facilitating and constraining forces are at play for businesses to actually adopt such a role.” He goes on to discuss this further through a systems view that examines the issue through three perspectives:
The aim is to provide a comprehensive overview of the opportunities and challenges related to innovation for sustainability, by combining work from both emerging and established scholars in different academic fields. In doing so it offers an integrated understanding of the innovation for sustainability from four perspectives:
- The big picture: frameworks, types and drivers;
- Strategy and leadership;
- Measurement and assessment;
- Tools, methods and technologies.
Paul Upman, Leuphana University and Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, comments that the “focus of the book is product and service innovation at the company level set in the context of societal pressures, corporate responses, tools and analysis from a wide variety of perspectives. Pages with prominent page counts include variants on: business models, circular economy, collaboration, eco-innovation, experimentation, futures, innovation for sustainability, leadership, product innovation, renewable energy, resource efficiency, shared value, supply chains and (the ubiquitous) triple bottom line.
“Overall, readers interested in company level accounts of innovation will find this book very useful and both the book and its individual chapters are likely to stay relevant for years.”
Innovation for Sustainability: Business Transformations Towards a Better World. Edited by Nancy Bocken, Paavo Ritala, Laura Albareda and Robert Verburg 2019, ISBN 978-3319973845,