By Frances Bowen
Companies advertise their environmental expertise via eco-friendly structures, eco-labels, sustainability reviews, pledges and fresh applied sciences. while are those symbols wasteful company spin, and whilst do they sign actual environmental advancements? in line with 20 years of analysis, 3 wealthy case stories, a robust theoretical version and more than a few functional functions, this ebook offers the 1st systematic research of the drivers and results of symbolic company environmentalism. It addresses the oblique fee of businesses' symbolic activities and develops a brand new inspiration of the 'social power penalty' - the fee to society while strong company actors restrict the social dialog on environmental difficulties and their strategies. This considerate e-book develops a collection of instruments for researchers, regulators and executives to split important environmental info from empty company spin, and should attract researchers and scholars of company accountability, company environmental procedure and sustainable company, in addition to environmental practitioners.
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Additional resources for After Greenwashing: Symbolic Corporate Environmentalism and Society
According to HSBC’s explanation, external factors led to an unintended mismatch between the firm’s carbon neutral goals and its ability to meet them. Pointing out that symbolic gaps do not always need to be deliberate does not exonerate the cases of outright deception about firms’ performance – these deliberate deceptions should always be exposed and corrected. Widening our understanding of how differences between green words and actions can occur to include unintended or emergent gaps will provide a richer and more realistic analysis of firms’ environmental strategies.
2005). Greenwashing is a special case of ‘merely symbolic’ in which firms deliberately manipulate their communications and symbolic practices so as to build a ceremonial fac¸ade (Forbes and Jermier 2012). However, there is another aspect of symbolic corporate environmentalism in which the symbolic and material components are indeed linked to substantive environmental improvement. It may be the case that the NRDC’s criticism is too harsh: there may be substantive environmental improvements associated with HSBC’s building.
1). 5 However, looking more closely at these articles reveals that, more 20 After greenwashing often than not, greenwashing makes a guest appearance in most contemporary corporate environmentalism scholarship. Of the 752 Google Scholar hits in 2012, for example, fewer than a dozen were peer-reviewed academic journal articles that discuss greenwashing in more than a cursory way. , Allenby 2012 on the Rio+20 conference and Stephenson, Doukas, and Shaw 2012 on the discourse about shale gas). In a new development in the greenwashing literature, both Haack, Schoeneborn, and Wickert (2012) and Dauvergne and Lister (2012) echo the end of na¨ıve greenwashing as exemplified by The Yes Men’s We Agree hoax.
After Greenwashing: Symbolic Corporate Environmentalism and Society by Frances Bowen