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Managing switching effects in sustainable projects: case studies

Managing switching effects in sustainable projects: case studies

Guandalini, Ilaria ORCID: 0000-0001-9154-4334 , Zhou, Li ORCID: 0000-0001-7132-5935 and Sun, Wenxian (2023) Managing switching effects in sustainable projects: case studies. Production Planning and Control. pp. 1-22. ISSN 0953-7287 (Print), 1366-5871 (Online) (doi:

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This work proposes a new framework for sustainability improvement based on the analysis of the changes created by organisations’ sustainable projects (SPs). The purpose is to help businesses making strategic decisions to better achieve both business and societal objectives. Revising the concept of Switching Costs and Benefits to focus on organisations’ change effects, we apply multiple case-study analysis to co-create the framework with four participating firms. Firms are purposely selected based on pre-established criteria of financial and sustainability performance. Through a reiterative process, research is untangled in three stages of interactions with participants for a total of six societal objectives and 34 projects. Primary data are collected from heads of departments or sustainability project managers through semi-structured interviews, surveys, and email exchanges between 2018 and 2021.This paper provides theoretical and practical contributions. In particular, this research extends the theoretical discussions about how to reconcile business and societal interests by adopting a new perspective to organisational decisions based on the assessment of change effects. Practically, the proposed analysis offers an alternative approach to the evaluation and ranking of SPs as well as the achievement of their societal objectives.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: switching costs (SC); sustainability; environmental social and governance(ESG); corporate financial performance (CFP); organisational strategy; sustainable value creation (SVC); Sustainable Development Goals (SGD)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD61 Risk Management
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Business
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2024 10:08

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