Determinants of eco-innovations by type of environmental impact — The role of regulatory push/pull, technology push and market pull
Empirical analyses of eco-innovation determinants have rarely been able to distinguish between different areas of environmental impact. The present paper tries to close this gap by employing a new and unique dataset based on the German Community Innovation Survey, conducted in 2009. The main purpose of this paper is to test whether different types of eco-innovation (according to their environmental impacts) are driven by different factors. Beside a complex set of different supply, firm-specific, and demand factors, the literature on determinants of eco-innovation accentuates the important role of regulation, cost savings and customer benefits. We find that current and expected government regulation is particularly important with regard to pushing firms to reduce air (e.g. CO2, SO2 or NOx) as well as water or noise emissions, avoid hazardous substances, and increase recyclability of products. Cost savings are an important motivation for reducing energy and material use, pointing to the role of energy and raw material prices as well as taxation as drivers for eco-innovation. Customer requirements are another important source of eco-innovations, particularly with regard to products with improved environmental performance and process innovations that increase material efficiency, and reduce energy consumption, waste and the use of dangerous substances. Firms confirm a high importance of expected future regulations for all environmental product innovations.
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