Transition to sustainable business models (Groene Zaak)

Transition to sustainable business models (Groene Zaak)

In the context of the NWO – Groene Zaak program ‘Sustainable Business Models’ the PrC together with several co-applicants (professors of the Erasmus University, Utrecht University, Delft University of Technology, and the University of Amsterdam) execute an action research project called: ‘Managing the transition to sustainable business models: the role of leadership and measuring shared value creation’. This project aims to contribute to the development of shared value measurement models and an understanding of the antecedents of transformational/sustainability leadership. It involves four part-time PhD positions of senior practitioners and a considerable number of stakeholders.

The overall research questions of this project are:

a) what type of leadership is particularly appropriate for shared value creation;

b) what are the main drivers of change towards CSV and how can leaders overcome internal and external barriers to change, deal with structural inertia and promote structural transformation;

c) what constitutes Shared Value and how to create and measure this?

The first year of this project runs from 2015 into 2016. During this first year a number of activities will be undertaken, such as:

• Research and validation of basic 4 phase model (how value is created at what level) that has been developed in an earlier phase by the PrC.

• Literature research on (shared) value creation, stages of transformation, business and measurement models

• Literature Research leadership types, mindset development levels / linking 4 phase model at ORG level with levels of I/leadership (4 perspectives of I, ORG, Market, ALL)

• Determination of wicked problems/societal must haves (such as Sustainable Development Goals)

• Determination of sample of companies to be researched

• Exploratory case studies: (stages, strategy, stakeholders/partnership portfolio tipping points, activities and results) using CSV framework and transition stages

• Taxonomy development and conceptual framework development


The project is headed by the PrC and co-led by Hanze University of Applied Sciences in Groningen and Delft University of Technology.

Supportive partners within the consortium are the Erasmus School of Economics at Erasmus University, Rotterdam, University of Amsterdam, Utrecht University and University of Hull in the UK.