Critical Analysis of Sustainabilty in Marketing

Topics: Sustainability, Marketing, Sustainable development Pages: 7 (1741 words) Published: June 3, 2014

Focus on sustainability has appeared on the face of the earth over the last ten years and a lot of books and articles are published on the topic of sustainability. Early on, John Elkington developed and promoted the concept of “Triple Bottom Line” in his book Cannibals with Forks: The Triple Bottom Line of 21st Century Business which was published in late 1999 (Creating a Sustainable Organization: Approaches for Enhancing Corporate value through Sustainability By Peter A. Soyka, Pg. 1) The concept of sustainability is transformed to cover three basic components known as the Triple Bottom Line which are complexly linked to one another: profits-it is the economical part that balances financial growth with awareness and concern for the social good and environmental stewardship; planet-it is the environmental part that safeguards and preserves the natural qualities of our ecosystem for the benefit and health of future generations; people-it is the social equity part that safeguards the benefits of opportunity and equality for every individual. The growing importance of sustainable development establishes a significant and developing challenge for environmental economics and natural resources. This challenge is such big that if it is not measured and controlled then it will ruin the life of the future generations that’s the reason why every field now a days strive to work hard to have Sustainable Value Creation (SVC). The question arises what is sustainability, a more relevant answer is provided by The Brundtland commission (1987) which says to be sustainable is to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. While this looks clear but if we observe it thoroughly and closely there are some complications and difficulties in it (Smart Green: How to Implement Sustainable Business Practices in Any Industry-and Make Money By Jonathan Estes page 6-8). The first problem which is a marketing problem is in the needs of the present and no one today knows of what level of needs we are talking about. The second difficulty is an ethical question that relates to the future and intergenerational justice, how we know what the needs of the future generations will be and how far do we look into the future? These two questions i.e. marketing and ethical must be explained much more clearly and precisely than the definition of the sustainability suggests. The world economies currently face many challenges in the domain of public and commercial policy and one of the most crucial challenges they are facing is sustainable development. According to the projections of United Nations (UN) on population growth, the population of the world will most likely reach nine (9) billion people by the year 2050 with most of the growth taking place in emerging and developing countries. It is the commitment of UN to improve environmental and social performance associated with sustainable development. It seems that it is highly unlikely to achieve the goals set by the UN with current unbalanced consumption, marketing and production practices. KEY IDEAS OF SUSTAINABLE MARKETING:

Creating consumer demand for sustainable products and services is not an easy task because the consumers traditionally behave to maximize their own utility. Many consumers think that anything which is good for the entire society in the long term is always the best option for the individuals in the short term and unfortunately for most of the consumers the positive attitudes toward sustainable development is not shown in their actual consumer behavior and purchases. There are differences in what people say and what they actually do. Sustainable consumer behavior can be enhanced by positioning sustainable behavior with consumers’ self-interest and by making sure that this self-interest is understood and recognized thoroughly and can be acted upon (Encouraging Sustainable...

References: Creating a Sustainable Organization: Approaches for Enhancing Corporate value through Sustainability by Peter A. Soyka, Pg. 1,
Smart Green: How to Implement Sustainable Business Practices in Any Industry-and Make Money By Jonathan Estes page 6-8,
Encouraging Sustainable Behavior: Psychology and the Environment edited by Hans C.M. van Trijp page 3-4,
Design for Environment as a Tool for the Development of a Sustainable Supply Chain by Bevilacqua, MaurizioCiarapica,Filippo Emanuele Giacchetta, Giancarlo, pg 147,
Social marketing: A pathway to consumption reduction? Ken Peattie, Sue Peattie. Pg. 262-264,
Product, Price, Place and Promotion) into 4C’s (Evolution of sustainability as marketing strategy: Beginning of new era Vinod Kumar, Zillur Rahman, A. A. Kazmi and Praveen Goyal, pg 486-487,
Jones et al 2008,
Charter et al 2006
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