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Organizing for sustainability: The importance of Formalization of control and Learning In the Transition Towards Sustainability


Sustainability has become a strategic priority for both practice and theory. The quest for sustainability has already started to change the competitive landscape and has become a major driver for innovation. Innovation and more precisely sustainable new product development allows the organization to improve competitiveness while simultaneously securing environmental sustainability. However, developing sustainable products poses many challenges. Processes and products need to be re-invented, controlling systems have to integrate new sets of data, external and internal communication strategies require revisions and basic values and knowledge systems need to adapted. Central to these challenges is thus to ability to learn, the ability to acquire new knowledge and integrate that knowledge into the newly developed products. The main objective of this research project is therefore to investigate to what extent learning from previous new sustainable product development projects (sustainable NPD) affects subsequent sustainable NPD performance. More precisely, this project investigates what types of experience with sustainable NPD projects are most beneficial and distinguishes on the one hand the impact of successful versus failed sustainable NPD projects and on the other hand the influence of internal versus external sustainable NPD project learning experiences. Furthermore, it explores to what extend this relationship is moderated by the types of controls that are used to guide those sustainable NPD projects. For this purpose a combination of experiments and surveys will be used.

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Burgemeester Oudlaan 50
3062 PA Rotterdam
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 183 469,80
Administrative Contact
Martin Bogaard (Mr.)