Advertisement

Experimentation for Sustainable Innovation

  • Ilka WeissbrodEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Sustainable Business In Association with Future Earth book series (PSSBAFE)

Abstract

This book chapter offers an exploration of how experimentation can further corporate sustainable innovation, with focus on product and service development. This exploration helps to bring further clarity to this new area of sustainability management research: by contrasting the corporate experimentation process with the experimentation approach used in the natural sciences. Experimentation for sustainable innovation draws on the lean startup approach and the concept of triple bottom line value creation. ‘Experimentation for Sustainable Innovation’ concludes with a visual summary of the proposed method. The chapter includes practitioner insights, based on qualitative research about Procter & Gamble.

References

  1. Andries, Petra, Koenraad Debackere, and Bart Van Looy. 2013. “Simultaneous experimentation as a learning strategy: Business model development under uncertainty.” Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal 7 (4): 288–310.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Antikainen, Maria, Anna Aminoff, Harri Paloheimo, and Outi Kettunen. 2017. “Designing circular business model experimentation—Case study.” In The Proceedings of the 2017 ISPIM Forum, 19–22, Toronto, Canada.Google Scholar
  3. Atkinson, Anthony C., and Alexander N. Donev. 1992. Optimum experimental designs. Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
  4. Bessant, John, Christina Öberg, and Anna Trifilova. 2014. “Framing problems in radical innovation.” Industrial Marketing Management 43 (8): 1284–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Blank, Steve. 2011. “Embrace failure to start up success.” Nature News 477 (7363): 133.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Blank, Steve. 2013. (1st Edition 2005). The four steps to the epiphany: Successful strategies for products that win, 5th ed. San Francisco, USA: K&S Ranch Publishing.Google Scholar
  7. Blomsma, Fenna, and Geraldine Brennan. 2017. “The emergence of circular economy: A new framing around prolonging resource productivity.” Journal of Industrial Ecology 21 (3): 603–14.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bocken, Nancy M. P., Cheyenne S. C. Schuit, and Christiaan Kraaijenhagen. 2018. “Experimenting with a circular business model: Lessons from eight cases.” Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions 28: 79–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Boons, Frank, and Florian Lüdeke-Freund. 2013. “Business models for sustainable innovation: State-of-the-art and steps towards a research agenda.” Journal of Cleaner Production 45: 9–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Caniglia, Guido, Niko Schäpke, Daniel J. Lang, David J. Abson, Christopher Luederitz, Arnim Wiek, Manfred D. Laubichler, Fabienne Gralla, and Henrik von Wehrden. 2017. “Experiments and evidence in sustainability science: A typology.” Journal of Cleaner Production 169: 39–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Chang, Yuan-Chieh, Huo-Tsan Chang, Hui-Ru Chi, Ming-Huei Chen, and Li-Ling Deng. 2012. “How do established firms improve radical innovation performance? The organizational capabilities view.” Technovation 32 (7–8): 441–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Chesbrough, Henry. 2010. “Business model innovation: Opportunities and barriers.” Long Range Planning 43 (2–3): 354–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Dewberry, Emma L., and Margarida Monteiro de Barros. 2009. “Exploring the need for more radical sustainable innovation: What does it look like and why?” International Journal of Sustainable Engineering 2 (1): 28–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Dodgson, Mark, David Gann, and Ammon Salter. 2006. “The role of technology in the shift towards open innovation: The case of Procter & Gamble.” R&D Management 36 (3): 333–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Edvardsson, Bo, Anders Gustafsson, Per Kristensson, Peter Magnusson, and Jonas Matthing. 2006. Involving customers in new service development. London, UK: Imperial College Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Epstein, Marc J., Adriana Rejc Buhovac, and Kristi Yuthas. 2010. “Implementing sustainability: The role of leadership and organizational culture.” Strategic Finance 91 (10): 41.Google Scholar
  17. Fussler, Claude, and Peter James. 1996. Driving eco-innovation: A breakthrough discipline for innovation and sustainability. London, UK: Pitman Publishing.Google Scholar
  18. Füller, Johann, and Kurt Matzler. 2007. “Virtual product experience and customer participation—A chance for customer-centred, really new products.” Technovation 27 (6–7): 378–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Gaziulusoy, İdil, Carol Boyle, and Ron McDowall. 2013. “System innovation for sustainability: A systemic double-flow scenario method for companies.” Journal of Cleaner Production 45: 104–16.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Hicks, Charles. 1982. Fundamental concepts in the design of experiments. New York, US: CBS College Publishing.Google Scholar
  21. Hockerts, Kai, and Rolf Wüstenhagen. 2010. “Greening Goliaths versus emerging Davids—Theorizing about the role of incumbents and new entrants in sustainable entrepreneurship.” Journal of Business Venturing 25 (5): 481–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Jay, Jason, and Marine Gerard. 2015. “Accelerating the theory and practice of sustainability-oriented innovation.” MIT Sloan Research Paper No. 5148-15. Available at SSRN: http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2629683.
  23. Lee, Fiona, Amy C. Edmondson, Stefan Thomke, and Monica Worline. 2004. “The mixed effects of inconsistency on experimentation in organizations.” Organization Science 15 (3): 310–26.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Lenox, Michael, and John Ehrenfeld. 1998. “Organizing for effective environmental design.” Business Strategy and the Environment 6 (4): 187–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Luederitz, Christopher, Niko Schäpke, Arnim Wiek, Daniel J. Lang, Matthias Bergmann, Joanette J. Bos, Sarah Burch, Anna Davies, James Evans, Ariane König, Megan A. Farrelly, Nigel Forrest, Niki Frantzeskaki, Robert B. Gibson, Braden Kay, Derk Loorbach, Kes McCormick, Oliver Parodi, Felix Rauschmayer, Uwe Schneidewind, Michael Stauffacher, Franziska Stelzer, Gregory Trencher, Johannes Venjakob, Philip J. Vergragt, Henrik von Wehrden, and Frances R. Westley. 2017. “Learning through evaluation—A tentative evaluative scheme for sustainability transition experiments.” Journal of Cleaner Production 169 (4): 61–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Maguire, Steve, Bill McKelvey, Laurent Mirabeau, and Nail Öztas. 2006. “Complexity science and organization studies.” In The Sage handbook of organization studies, edited by Stewart Clegg, Cynthia Hardy, Tom Lawrence, and Walter Nord, 165–214. London, UK: Sage.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. McGrath, Rita Gunther. 2001. “Exploratory learning, innovative capacity, and managerial oversight.” Academy of Management Journal 44 (1): 118–31.Google Scholar
  28. Mitchell, Sandra D. 2009. Unsimple truths: Science, complexity, and policy. Chicago, USA: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  29. Montgomery, Douglas. 2001. Design and analysis of experiments, 5th ed. New York, USA: Wiley.Google Scholar
  30. Müller, Roland M., and Katja Thoring. 2012. “Design thinking vs. lean startup: A comparison of two user-driven innovation strategies.” In Leading through design. International Design Management Research Conference, August 8–9. Boston, USA.Google Scholar
  31. Osterwalder, Alex, and Yves Pigneur. 2009. Business model generation. Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Modderman Drukwerk.Google Scholar
  32. Osterwalder, Alex, Yves Pigneur, Greg Bernada, and Alan Smith. 2014. Value design proposition. How to create products and services customers want. Hoboken, USA: Wiley.Google Scholar
  33. Ries, Eric. 2011. The lean startup: How today’s entrepreneurs use continuous innovation to create radically successful businesses. London, UK: Penguin Books.Google Scholar
  34. Sandberg, Birgitta, and Leena Aarikka-Stenroos. 2014. “What makes it so difficult? A systematic review on barriers to radical innovation.” Industrial Marketing Management 43 (8): 1293–1305.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Schaltegger, Stefan, Florian Lüdeke-Freund, and Erik G. Hansen. 2016. “Business models for sustainability: A co-evolutionary analysis of sustainable entrepreneurship, innovation, and transformation.” Organization & Environment 29 (3): 264–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Schumpeter, Joseph A. 1934. The theory of economic development: An inquiry into profits, capital, credit, interest, and the business cycle. Cambridge, USA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  37. Tennant, Mike. 2013. “Sustainability and manufacturing.” In The future of manufacturing: A new era of opportunity and challenge for the UK. London: Government Office for Science and Department of Businesses.Google Scholar
  38. Tuulenmäki, Anssi, and Liisa Välikangas. 2011. “The art of rapid, hands‐on execution innovation.” Strategy & Leadership 39 (2): 28–35.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Weber, Matthias, Remco Hoogma, Ben Lane, and Johan Schot. 1999. Experimenting for sustainable transport innovations. A workbook for Strategic Niche Management. Seville, Spain: Institute for Prospective Technological Studies.Google Scholar
  40. Weissbrod, Ilka, and Nancy M. P. Bocken. 2017. “Developing sustainable business experimentation capability—A case study.” Journal of Cleaner Production 142: 2663–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Westley, Frances, Per Olsson, Carl Folke, Thomas Homer-Dixon, Harrie Vredenburg, Derk Loorbach, John Thompson, Måns Nilsson, Eric Lambin, Jan Sendzimir, Banny Banerjee, Victor Galaz, and Sander Leeuw. 2011. “Tipping toward sustainability: Emerging pathways of transformation.” Ambio 40 (7): 762–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Leuphana University Lüneburg, Centre for Sustainability ManagementLüneburgGermany
  2. 2.Centre for Environmental PolicyImperial College LondonLondonUK

Personalised recommendations