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Small Business and the Environment in the UK and the Netherlands: Toward Stakeholder Cooperation


  • Spence, Laura J.
  • Jeurissen, Ronald
  • Rutherfoord, Robert


In this paper, the approaches of a sample of small firms to environmental issues in the UK and the Netherlands are compared. The study makes a contribution by addressing the lack of research on small firms and the environment, as well as offering insights into the influence that cultural, institutional, and political frameworks can have on small firm owner-managers’ attitudes to external issues. The environment is considered here as an ethical issue, drawing on work on the environmental responsibility of business by both Bowie (1990) and Hoffman (1991). It is argued that the approaches to the environment identified in this study by Dutch and UK small firm owner-managers do not fit in with the positions of either Bowie or Hoffman. The concept of stakeholder cooperation is proposed as a more realistic alternative.

Suggested Citation

  • Spence, Laura J. & Jeurissen, Ronald & Rutherfoord, Robert, 2000. "Small Business and the Environment in the UK and the Netherlands: Toward Stakeholder Cooperation," Business Ethics Quarterly, Cambridge University Press, vol. 10(4), pages 945-965, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:buetqu:v:10:y:2000:i:04:p:945-965_00

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    Cited by:

    1. J.J. Graafland & H. Smid, 2004. "Reputation, Corporate Social Responsibility and Market Regulation," Review of Business and Economic Literature, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB), Review of Business and Economic Literature, vol. 0(2), pages 271-308.
    2. Chris Groves & Lori Frater & Robert Lee & Elen Stokes, 2011. "Is There Room at the Bottom for CSR? Corporate Social Responsibility and Nanotechnology in the UK," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 101(4), pages 525-552, July.
    3. Giovanni Garegnani & Emilia Merlotti & Angeloantonio Russo, 2015. "Scoring Firms’ Codes of Ethics: An Explorative Study of Quality Drivers," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 126(4), pages 541-557, February.
    4. De Vries, Eline L.E. & Duque, Lola C., 2018. "Small but Sincere: How Firm Size and Gratitude Determine the Effectiveness of Cause Marketing Campaigns," Journal of Retailing, Elsevier, vol. 94(4), pages 352-363.
    5. François Labelle & Josée St-Pierre, 2010. "Les déterminants institutionnels, organisationnels et individuels de la sensibilité des PME au sujet du développement durable," Post-Print hal-01705659, HAL.
    6. repec:eme:srjpps:v:6:y:2010:i:2:p:490-508 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Martha Ríos Manríquez & Celina López Mateo & Julián Ferrer Guerra, 2016. "Factorial Validation of a Corporate Social Responsibility Perception Scale for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises," Information Management and Business Review, AMH International, vol. 8(5), pages 25-38.
    8. Angeloantonio Russo & Francesco Perrini, 2010. "Investigating Stakeholder Theory and Social Capital: CSR in Large Firms and SMEs," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 91(2), pages 207-221, January.
    9. Geoff Moore & Laura Spence, 2006. "Editorial: Responsibility and Small Business," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 67(3), pages 219-226, September.
    10. Gonzalo Maldonado-Guzman & Sandra Yesenia Pinzon-Castro & Gabriela Citlalli Lopez-Torres, 2016. "Corporate Social Responsibility and Business Performance: The Role of Mexican SMEs," International Journal of Asian Social Science, Asian Economic and Social Society, vol. 6(10), pages 568-579, October.
    11. Gary Lynch-Wood & David Williamson, 2014. "Civil Regulation, the Environment and the Compliance Orientations of SMEs," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 125(3), pages 467-480, December.
    12. Francesco Perrini & Angeloantonio Russo & Antonio Tencati, 2007. "CSR Strategies of SMEs and Large Firms. Evidence from Italy," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 74(3), pages 285-300, September.
    13. Graafland, J.J. & Ven van de, B. & Stoffele, N., 2003. "Strategies and instruments for organising CSR by small and large businesses in the Netherlands," MPRA Paper 20754, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Lorraine Uhlaner & Marta Berent-Braun & Ronald Jeurissen & Gerrit Wit, 2012. "Beyond Size: Predicting Engagement in Environmental Management Practices of Dutch SMEs," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 109(4), pages 411-429, September.
    15. Francesco Perrini, 2006. "SMEs and CSR Theory: Evidence and Implications from an Italian Perspective," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 67(3), pages 305-316, September.
    16. Pablo Sánchez & Sonia Benito-Hernández, 2015. "CSR Policies: Effects on Labour Productivity in Spanish Micro and Small Manufacturing Companies," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 128(4), pages 705-724, June.
    17. Angeloantonio Russo & Antonio Tencati, 2009. "Formal vs. Informal CSR Strategies: Evidence from Italian Micro, Small, Medium-sized, and Large Firms," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 85(2), pages 339-353, April.

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