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Environmental and performance management forces

Listed author(s):
  • Aapo Länsiluoto
Registered author(s):

    Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to analyze the forces that prompted a Finnish food manufacturing company to implement environmental management system (EMS) and performance management system (PMS). The paper also aims to describe how and why environmental issues were integrated onto a balanced scorecard (BSC). Design/methodology/approach - The paper utilizes both qualitative and longitudinal case study approaches. Semi-structured interviews are the main source of empirical data; these were conducted by both researchers. Findings - The forces driving the implementation of the EMS changed from external to internal forces over time. The initial purpose of EMS implementation was to obtain an environmental certificate. Later on the forces turned to internal ones when the causal link between improving environmental performance and profitability was recognized. The PMS implementation, as well as the PMS and EMS integration, had internal forces driving them. The company integrated environmental indicators into its BSC, which thus connected the EMS and PMS. This integration demonstrated the financial impacts of the environmental improvements. Research limitations/implications - The limitation relates to the methodological issues when the results can be generalized theoretically. Practical implications - If dealing with environmental issues is considered to potentially increase profitability, there must be a great potential to improve environmental performance at the same time. If environmental measures are integrated into a BSC, they are monitored and discussed more precisely. The BSC is thus a worthwhile tool for reporting information on environmental performance. The construction of an EMS and a PMS requires a co-operation between different functions and levels of the organization. Finally, the forces for improving EMS and PMS can emerge both from outside and inside. Originality/value - This paper contributes to the empirical research on environmental and performance management by integrating these two issues, and also illustrates that forces are dynamic rather than static.

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    Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management.

    Volume (Year): 5 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 3 (October)
    Pages: 184-206

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    Handle: RePEc:eme:qrampp:v:5:y:2008:i:3:p:184-206
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    1. Anderson, Shannon W. & Young, S. Mark, 1999. "The impact of contextual and process factors on the evaluation of activity-based costing systems," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 24(7), pages 525-559, October.
    2. repec:eme:qrampp:v:3:y:2006:i:2:p:145-160 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. repec:eme:qrampp:v:3:y:2006:i:3:p:188-207 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. repec:eme:qrampp:v:3:y:2006:i:2:p:94-111 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Christine Byrch, 2007. "Sustainable “what”? A cognitive approach to understanding sustainable development," Qualitative Research in Accounting & Management, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 4(1), pages 26-52, March.
    6. repec:eme:qrampp:v:3:y:2006:i:1:p:67-83 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. repec:eme:aaajpp:v:19:y:2006:i:4:p:540-563 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Magrini, Alessandra & Lins, Luiz dos Santos, 2007. "Integration between environmental management and strategic planning in the oil and gas sector," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(10), pages 4869-4878, October.
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