Creating shared value through business models based on sustainability and CSR : An empirical study of Swedish companies

University essay from Umeå universitet/Företagsekonomi; Umeå universitet/Företagsekonomi

Abstract: Businesses and humans in general have led to a variety of different social and environmental problems. In this thesis we call on businesses to be the solution to these problems. Therefore, we have developed two research questions:   How do Swedish companies incorporate CSR and sustainability into their business models? and How do Swedish companies create shared value through business models based on sustainability and CSR?   The purpose of these research questions is to discover how Swedish companies incorporate CSR and sustainability into their business models. Also, we aim to see how a business model based on CSR and sustainability can create shared value. We have focused our view of a business model on Bocken et al.’s (2014) three pillars: value proposition, value creation and delivery, and value capture. Furthermore, we have made a distinction between the concepts of sustainability and CSR to see how they impact these different business model pillars. We divided sustainability into two types: weak and strong and broke CSR into internal and external CSR. Porter and Kramer (2011) gave seven examples of how the concept of shared value could be created. Shared value is created when society benefits at the same time a company is making economic gains. To combine the concepts of business model innovation, business models, sustainability, CSR, and shared value we have created a model. The model’s purpose is to see how companies can practically integrate CSR and sustainability into the three business model pillars. Business model innovation was the purpose arena in which a company could change in order to create shared value   After conducting interviews with seven different respondents from six different companies located in northern Sweden we were able to see that both strong and weak sustainability are visible in the value proposition pillar and somewhat visible in the value creation and delivery pillar. On the other hand, both internal and external CSR were only visible in the value creation and delivery pillar. Moreover, we could conclude that shared value was created by all of the respondent’s companies and in addition to Porter and Kramer’s (2011) examples added a new way shared value can be created through spreading ‘green’ knowledge. By using our research as a starting point we were able to identify directions for future research in the fields of business model innovation, business models, sustainability, CSR, and shared value. 

  AT THIS PAGE YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THE WHOLE ESSAY. (follow the link to the next page)