The world is going green. Sustainability is increasingly becoming a part of our daily üfe. This revolutionary process is being accompanied by a “tectonic shift taking place in the business world as a result of the megatrends of population growth, globalization, urbanization and climate change.” (Oltmanns (2011)) Recent disasters, such as the explosion of the nuclear power plant in Fukushima and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, have fostered this process by changing our perception of the customs and standard practices that allowed them to occur. Although the need for change is typically associated with higher economic cost, it actually harbors tremendous economic potential and infinite opportunities for innovative firms to engage in developing and marketing green technologies. These technologies will increase efficiency, substitute fossil resources and enhance the world’s ability to recover from negative externalities such as CO2 emissions. Clean energy is a hallmark of the emerging discipline that is increasingly being recognized as an industry in its own right and is often referred to as green technology or “greentech”. However, one major concern of policymakers is that barriers imposed by today’s economic system hinder its progress and ultimately block a more sustainable technology trajectory. This is because externalities are often not priced in – and hence not appropriately integrated in – the institutional system we currently know. With Germany leading the way, many countries have therefore devoted considerable financial resources to supporting innovation in and the diffusion of green technologies, hoping to set sustainable development in motion while at the same time sparking industry and fueling job creation. It is therefore crucial to understand the issues of technological innovation, firm growth and its financing, and how the two are interrelated. Interdisciplinary research combining these elements is scarce, however; and greentech evidence at firm level is literally non-existent. This book therefore addresses the existing research gaps by not only developing an integrated framework, but also providing one of the first empirical and firm-level studies in this field, centering around the German greentech industry, which has become one of the largest in the world.


Venture Capital Negative Externality Green Technology Innovative Firm Venture Capital Investor 
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© Gabler Verlag | Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden GmbH 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philipp H. Hoff

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