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The employment impact of cleaner production on the firm level: empirical evidence from a survey in five European countries

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  • Rennings, Klaus
  • Zwick, Thomas

Abstract

This paper analyses the determinants of employment reactions of firms when environmental innovations have been carried out. It differentiates hereby between employment increases and decreases. The data stem from a telephone survey covering more than 1500 firms in five European countries that have introduced environmental innovations recently. Environmentally beneficial product and service innovations create jobs in contrast to process innovations. Employment changes occur in the wake of major innovations only and especially in small firms and firms with positive sales expectations. While innovations purely motivated by environmental goals tend not to have employment effects, cost reductions envisaged by environmental innovations reduce employment. We detect skill biased technological change of environmental innovations. Environmental innovations have a small but positive effect on employment on the firm level. Thus, environmental support programmes do not counteract labour market policy. A further shift from end-of-pipe technologies to cleaner production, especially towards product and service innovations, would be beneficial for the environment and creates jobs.

Suggested Citation

  • Rennings, Klaus & Zwick, Thomas, 2001. "The employment impact of cleaner production on the firm level: empirical evidence from a survey in five European countries," ZEW Discussion Papers 01-08, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:5363
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Rennings, Klaus, 2000. "Redefining innovation -- eco-innovation research and the contribution from ecological economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 319-332, February.
    2. Brouwer, Erik & Kleinknecht, Alfred & Reijnen, Jeroen O N, 1993. "Employment Growth and Innovation at the Firm Level," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 3(2), pages 153-159, May.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Environmental technologies; cleaner production; innovation; labour demand;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • Q50 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - General
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand

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