Given increasing pressure from disparate groups (citizens, consumers, nonprofit groups, government, investors, shareholders, etc.), corporations have been actively attempting to incorporate the elements of sustainability, environment, economics, and social issues into the fabric of corporate strategy.  Yet, despite greater and more concrete expectations from investors and the public, the incorporation of sustainability and the inherently lofty goals that go along with it remain only partly accomplished, and in some cases altogether elusive for some companies. Part of the problem lies in the misappropriation of the term sustainability to stand for anything done in service of “green PR”.  In other cases, sustainability has simply not been properly defined for use in driving corporate strategic planning.  Without a way of defining sustainability in the corporate context, it is difficult to know how to measure and achieve it.

That “it” is what myriad consultants and companies have wrestled with in the last two decades in particular.  In the tangle of software programs, consultant reports, and sustainability plans, what has been missing is a connected set of tools and methods that enable a streamlined and simplified way of collecting and managing data, measuring a company’s baseline environmental footprint, and deciding which set of interventions to undertake to decrease that footprint and improve overall sustainability.

In the case of supply chain greening, there are untapped opportunities to be found.Companies are not often viewed in terms of their consumption patterns, yet it remains true that company purchases on a large scale do have substantial environmental impacts. The results of my dissertation (available for viewing on this website), show that even mundane and typical purchases such as food can have large impacts worth assessing for potential reductions. Leveraging purchasing power to reduce these […]