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Collaborative Enterprise and Sustainability: The Case of Slow Food


  • Antonio Tencati


  • Laszlo Zsolnai



The current and prevailing paradigm of intensive agricultural production is a straightforward example of the mainstream way of doing business. Mainstream enterprises are based on a negativistic view of human nature that leads to counter-productive and unsustainable behaviours producing negative impact for society and the natural environment. If we want to change the course, then different players are needed, which can flourish thanks to their capacity to serve others and creating values for all the participants in the network in which they are embedded. In the article, through the analysis of the Slow Food movement and the use of recent theoretical and empirical contributions in behavioural sciences and psychology, we support the collaborative enterprise model as an alternative to the still prevailing, mainstream business models. Evidence shows that caring and responsible efforts of economic agents are acknowledged and reciprocated even in highly competitive markets. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Suggested Citation

  • Antonio Tencati & Laszlo Zsolnai, 2012. "Collaborative Enterprise and Sustainability: The Case of Slow Food," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 110(3), pages 345-354, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jbuset:v:110:y:2012:i:3:p:345-354
    DOI: 10.1007/s10551-011-1178-1

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Laszlo Zsolnai, 2011. "Environmental ethics for business sustainability," International Journal of Social Economics, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 38(11), pages 892-899, September.
    2. Saifi, Basim & Drake, Lars, 2008. "A coevolutionary model for promoting agricultural sustainability," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 24-34, March.
    3. Ulgiati, Sergio & Zucaro, Amalia & Franzese, Pier Paolo, 2011. "Shared wealth or nobody's land? The worth of natural capital and ecosystem services," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(4), pages 778-787, February.
    4. Henrich, Joseph, 2004. "Cultural group selection, coevolutionary processes and large-scale cooperation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 3-35, January.
    5. Bruce Pietrykowski, 2004. "You Are What You Eat: The Social Economy of the Slow Food Movement," Review of Social Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 62(3), pages 307-321.
    6. Antonio Tencati & Laszlo Zsolnai, 2009. "The Collaborative Enterprise," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 85(3), pages 367-376, March.
    7. Ingebrigtsen, Stig & Jakobsen, Ove, 2009. "Moral development of the economic actor," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(11), pages 2777-2784, September.
    8. Michael Maloni & Michael Brown, 2006. "Corporate Social Responsibility in the Supply Chain: An Application in the Food Industry," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 68(1), pages 35-52, September.
    9. Baumgärtner, Stefan & Quaas, Martin, 2010. "What is sustainability economics?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 445-450, January.
    10. Manner, Mikko & Gowdy, John, 2010. "The evolution of social and moral behavior: Evolutionary insights for public policy," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(4), pages 753-761, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:kap:jbuset:v:144:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10551-015-2828-5 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Roberta Sebastiani & Francesca Montagnini & Daniele Dalli, 2013. "Ethical Consumption and New Business Models in the Food Industry. Evidence from the Eataly Case," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 114(3), pages 473-488, May.
    3. Sojin Jung & Byoungho Jin, 2016. "Sustainable Development of Slow Fashion Businesses: Customer Value Approach," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(6), pages 1-15, June.
    4. Claudia Bazzani & Daniele Asioli & Maurizio Canavari & Elisabetta Gozzoli, 2016. "Consumer perceptions and attitudes towards Farmers' Markets: the case of a Slow Food "Earth Market"®," ECONOMIA AGRO-ALIMENTARE, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 18(3), pages 283-302.
    5. repec:gam:jagris:v:7:y:2017:i:8:p:65-:d:106635 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Lydia Zepeda & Anna Reznickova, 2017. "Innovative millennial snails: the story of Slow Food University of Wisconsin," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 34(1), pages 167-178, March.


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