ECODESIGN -- The Competitive Advantage (Alliance for Global Sustainability Bookseries)

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9789400733480: ECODESIGN -- The Competitive Advantage (Alliance for Global Sustainability Bookseries)

Dealing with environmental issues should no longer be considered simply as a cost of doing business. Effective environmental improvements to a company’s products and services can be turned into business opportunities. This book was written with the express purpose of helping managers of companies, in particular of Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs), to better deal with environmental challenges and address customer requirements, all in order to turn their environmental inve- ments into competitive market advantages. Several examples are provided throughout the book, but also warning signs (Alert Boxes). These “Alerts” are posted to help managers avoid typical traps when working with environmental considerations in business processes. The authors have many years of experience in the various aspects of impleme- ing Ecodesign. This experience includes working in industry for many years; le- ing the environmental departments in a multinational company; managing research projects in eco-product development; Life Cycle Assessment; and national and international environmental communication and marketing. This book is the latest in a series. The 2002 “Ecodesign Pilot” introduced a tool and software to help design more environmentally compatible products. It was directed specifically at designers. The 2004 book, “Ecodesign Implementation”, was written to help project managers optimize product development processes from an environmental perspective.

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Two significant trends are shaping the environmental agenda: Green procurement - more and more businesses, governments and even consumers are seeking ecoproducts; and, new product related guidelines, directives and regulations have already been developed. How should business respond? There are tools and approaches available. This book, "ECODESIGN – the competitive advantage", was written specifically to provide guidance and will help managers of small and medium-sized enterprises, as well as others interested in the management of business, in a range of ways, including: how to best deal with the European Union’s new Ecodesign directives; how to understand the concepts behind (and the process of calculating) the carbon footprint of products; how to prepare for future challenges related to, for example, climate change, resource depletion and shortages, increasing restrictions on the use of toxic substances, and energy management; and how to best position products which have been environmentally improved in a competitive marketplace. In order to deal with the myriad of challenges, the authors have included simple, but detailed checklists that can be used to evaluate a company’s operations and serve as a guide to finding solutions. These have been structured around the corporate, management, product and production levels typically found in any enterprise. Environmental expenditures should not be viewed as costs, but rather investments – with the expectation that prudent investment will yield competitive advantage.

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“... einen guten Überblick über die wichtigsten Aspekte, Fragestellungen, Maßnahmen, Methoden und Managementsysteme zu vermitteln. Insbesondere die zahlreichen Checklisten bieten eine gute Hilfestellung beim Einstieg in das Thema...“ (in: RKW Bücherdienst, 2013, Issue 1, S. 9)

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