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Understanding value conflict to engage SME managers with business greening

Williams, Sarah; Schaefer, Anja and Blundel, Richard (2017). Understanding value conflict to engage SME managers with business greening. In: Rendtorff, Jacob Dahl ed. Perspectives on Philosophy of Management and Business Ethics. Ethical Economy: Studies in Economic Ethics and Philosphy. Springer, pp. 73–91.

DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-46973-7
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Abstract

The objective of this chapter is to contribute to the understanding of why SME managers engage with business greening. Ethical tensions are understood through use of the Schwartz Value System. The starting assumption is that the business framing of the environment, to save money and save the planet (win-win), is not value free but draws on conflicting values of power and universalism. The empirical research for this chapter engaged 31 SME managers from a variety of business sectors within the East of England in semi-structured interviews. The results showed that 'power' values are not the only way of filtering and constructing business greening. Managers were found to be drawingo n the full range of values with marker values linked with 'achievement' particularly clear. It is concluded that manager values, especially within SMEs, are key to understanding the interplay of motivations for engaging with business greening. The 'win-win' concept needs to evolve to take managers beyond quick financial savings. It is argued that one way to do that may be to reframe environmental issues for business to stimulate values other than power. Practitioner work, in partnership with Bedfordshire Green Business Network (GBM), reports the usefulness of such approaches.

Item Type: Book Section
Copyright Holders: 2017 Springer International Publishing AG
ISBN: 3-319-46972-X, 978-3-319-46972-0
Extra Information: ISSN: 2211 - 2707
Keywords: SMEs; sustainability; engagement; values
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Business and Law (FBL) > Business
Faculty of Business and Law (FBL)
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Policing Research and Learning (CPRL)
International Development & Inclusive Innovation
Innovation, Knowledge & Development research centre (IKD)
Item ID: 48056
Depositing User: Anja Schaefer
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2017 16:46
Last Modified: 14 Feb 2017 07:12
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/48056
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