CONTINUOUS RELEVANCE & RESPONSIBILITY: INTEGRATION OF SUSTAINABILITY & EXCELLENCE VIA INNOVATION

Jacob Eskildsen, Rick Edgeman

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/JPM.2012.005

Abstract


Purpose: Sustainable Enterprise Excellence or SEE weds core elements of corporate governance, sustainability, and enterprise excellence with the goal of advancing organizational progress toward the asymptotic objective of being continuously relevant and responsible. There are many possible enablers of and approaches to SEE realization. Innovation is among such critical enablers so that the role of innovation in SEE and a process for embedding innovation in the enterprise are explored. Use of innovation to integrate sustainability and enterprise excellence is particularly emphasized.

Methodology & Approach: Two types of innovation are especially relevant to sustainable enterprise excellence: innovation for sustainability and sustainable innovation. The first of these focuses on targets of innovation with sustainability at their core, particularly with respect to environmental or social dimensions of sustainability. The second of these, sustainable innovation, is concerned with creating a culture wherein innovation is native. Sustainable innovation and innovation for sustainability are melded to produce Socio-Ecological Innovation or SEI. Formal SEI elements are considered, an approach for SEI deployment is suggested, and SEI maturity with respect to these elements is assessed.

Findings: Ten basic and ten advanced SEI enablers are identified and integrated and a method for embedding and assessing the maturity of these is provided, after which a simple assessment presentation approach is proposed.

Implications for Further Research: Better understanding of SEI enablers is needed as is more clear understanding of what overall SEI maturity entails. The cited SEI enablers and maturity assessment method should be refined as greater understanding of SEI evolves.


Keywords


enterprise excellence; innovation for sustainability; maturity assessment; sustainable innovation; sustainable enterprise excellence; SWOT analysis

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