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Exploring the role of IT for environmental sustainability in China: An empirical analysis

  • Cai, Shun
  • Chen, Xi
  • Bose, Indranil
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    Recently, the role of information technology (IT) for energy and environmental sustainability has received wide attention from both academics and practitioners because IT plays a crucial role in the energy consumption and environmental related issues. This study explores the role of IT for energy and environmental sustainability in China by proposing a research model based on the political–economic framework. Drawing upon the stakeholder theory, we identify public concerns and regulatory forces as key political factors, and cost reduction and differentiation as key economic factors that affect the adoption of green IT and IT for green. The survey method is employed to test our model and hypotheses and PLS is chosen for data analysis. Our results reveal that economic factors, including cost reduction and differentiation are critical in influencing Chinese companies to adopt IT for environmental sustainability strategy. Our research suggests that the role of IT for environmental sustainability may go beyond cost reduction and contribute to competitive advantage for the firms. With the proper use of IT and IT related systems and equipments, a firm can improve its competitiveness while continuing to be environmentally friendly.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0925527313000480
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Journal of Production Economics.

    Volume (Year): 146 (2013)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 491-500

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:proeco:v:146:y:2013:i:2:p:491-500
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ijpe

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    1. Miao, Zhaowei & Cai, Shun & Xu, Di, 2012. "Exploring the antecedents of logistics social responsibility: A focus on Chinese firms," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 140(1), pages 18-27.
    2. Faucheux, S. & Nicolaï, I., 2011. "IT for green and green IT: A proposed typology of eco-innovation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(11), pages 2020-2027, September.
    3. Gefen, David, 2000. "E-commerce: the role of familiarity and trust," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 725-737, December.
    4. Pauline Barrieu & Bernard Sinclair-Desgagné, 2006. "On Precautionary Policies," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(8), pages 1145-1154, August.
    5. Zhu, Qinghua & Sarkis, Joseph & Cordeiro, James J. & Lai, Kee-Hung, 2008. "Firm-level correlates of emergent green supply chain management practices in the Chinese context," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 577-591, August.
    6. Michael E. Porter & Claas van der Linde, 1995. "Toward a New Conception of the Environment-Competitiveness Relationship," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 97-118, Fall.
    7. Clarkson, Peter M. & Li, Yue & Richardson, Gordon D. & Vasvari, Florin P., 2008. "Revisiting the relation between environmental performance and environmental disclosure: An empirical analysis," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 33(4-5), pages 303-327.
    8. Naresh K. Malhotra & Sung S. Kim & Ashutosh Patil, 2006. "Common Method Variance in IS Research: A Comparison of Alternative Approaches and a Reanalysis of Past Research," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 52(12), pages 1865-1883, December.
    9. Wu, Guo-Ciang & Ding, Jyh-Hong & Chen, Ping-Shun, 2012. "The effects of GSCM drivers and institutional pressures on GSCM practices in Taiwan’s textile and apparel industry," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 135(2), pages 618-636.
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