Business Model Innovation for Sustainability
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The Timken Chaired Professor of Global Technology and Innovation, Professor of
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Business Model Innovation for Sustainability
Karan Girotra and Serguei Netessine, INSEAD
Plambeck (Forthcoming) describes five “Cleantech” firms (Zeta, First Solar, Better Place,
Amyris and Calera) and calls for guidelines on how the Operations Management community can stimulate invention of new business models that promote environmental sustainability. The need to systematize the study of business model innovation is central to the creation of sustainable businesses.
A new business model can often make the ownership and use of existing products/technology more environmentally and socially favorable. For instance, business models that align incentives of users with the environmental impact of their use can make existing products and technologies more sustainable. Further, just as in previous disruptive technological advances like the Internet, the advancement of sustainable technology has often exceeded the development of business models needed to capture value from it (Teece 2010). Specifically, the innovative technology
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