Pathways to Sustainable Industrial Transformations: Cooptimising Competitiveness, Employment, and Environment
Author(s)Ashford, Nicholas A.; Hafkamp, Wim; Prakke, Frits; Vergragt, Philip
The relationship between industrialisation and the effects on the environment has captured the serious attention of national governments and international organisations. In the Netherlands, a successive series of the National Environmental Policy Plans (NEPPs) have been conceived and implemented to guide environmentally sound development. Sustainability in products, processes, and services has been increasingly emphasised by placing environment at the center of some industrial transformations -- or at least on a par with competitiveness. The key to environmental sustainability was recognized early as involving the design and implementation of environmentally sound products, processes and services, rather than addressing environmental concerns as an afterthought in industrial systems. In the current formulation of NEPP 4, important changes from products to product-services and changes in systems, such as for energy, agriculture, and construction are receiving serious attention. Involvement in ‘transition management’ is becoming a central focus of future policy in The Netherlands.