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Environmental performance, competitiveness and management of small businesses in Europe

Hitchens, David, Thankappan, Samarthia, Trainor, Mary, Clausen, Jens and De Marchi, Bruna 2005. Environmental performance, competitiveness and management of small businesses in Europe. Tijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie 96 (5) , pp. 541-557. 10.1111/j.1467-9663.2005.00485.x

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Is it the case that more competitive SMEs have greater capacity to adopt environmental initiatives? The answer is no, according to this study which tried to link small firm environmental performance to factors such as profitability, growth, skills and research and development. This study focuses on three interrelated propositions that are concerned with the impact of environmental initiatives on firm competitiveness; the relevance of management's awareness to environment: the availability of external information and expertise to aid management, and the competitiveness of the firm. The firm's competitive strengths measured variously as above average profitability, firm growth and R&D, skills and modernity of plant and equipment, there was only scattered evidence to suggest any of these was importantly associated with the firm's environmental performance. The study showed that firms with an average economic performance were just as likely to adopt environmental initiatives as their high-performing competitors. Moreover, regardless of managers voicing personal concerns about the environment, most small firms do relatively little about the environment in practice and are reluctant to seek advice about it.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HG Finance
Uncontrolled Keywords: Environmental performance ; environmental initiatives ; competitiveness ; compliance firms ; compliance plus firms ; excellence firms
ISSN: 0040-747X
Last Modified: 15 Dec 2017 08:39

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