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Challenges when including sustainability aspects in product development at two large manufacturing companies in Sweden
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2552-3636
2019 (English)In: Technologies and Eco-innovation towards Sustainability I: Eco Design of Products and Services / [ed] Allen H. Hu, Mitsutaka Matsumoto, Tsai Chi Kuo, Shana Smith, Singapore: Springer, 2019, Vol. I, p. 229-243Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

When including sustainability aspects in product development challenges may arise. The aim of this paperis to expand current knowledge about challenges faced by manufacturing companies when includingsustainability aspects in product development. To fulfil the aim, a multiple case study at two largemanufacturing companies was conducted. Data was collected through semi-structured interviews,complemented with data from the companies’ sustainability reports. The novelty of this research is an expansion of the existing knowledge about these types ofchallenges. Additionally, drivers for the companies’ inclusion of sustainability aspects in productdevelopment and meaning of sustainability for the companies, are described. The results show that thechallenges differ to a large extent between the two companies. Despite the differences, challenges causedby a lack of recourses, lack of knowledge and need to fulfil economic goals are the most commonly described challenges at the companies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Singapore: Springer, 2019. Vol. I, p. 229-243
Keywords [en]
ecodesign, environmental conscious design, sustainable, product design, design for environment
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-151686DOI: 10.1007/978-981-13-1181-9_18ISBN: 9789811311802 (print)ISBN: 9789811311819 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-151686DiVA, id: diva2:1252188
Conference
Going Green EcoDesign2017 10th International Symposium on Environmentally Conscious Design and Inverse Manufacturing November 29 - December 1, 2017, Tainan, Taiwan
Available from: 2018-10-01 Created: 2018-10-01 Last updated: 2019-01-22Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Inclusion of sustainability aspects in product development at manufacturing companies
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Inclusion of sustainability aspects in product development at manufacturing companies
2018 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Due to current consumption and production patterns of products, pressure on already constrained natural resources, an increasing global population, increasing concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and reduced access to clean water globally, studying manufacturing companies’ inclusion of sustainability aspects in their product development becomes important.

The aim of this thesis is to expand current knowledge on the inclusion of sustainability aspects in product development at manufacturing companies. More specifically, the expansion of current knowledge covers how manufacturing companies include sustainability aspects in product development, the challenges manufacturing companies may face when including sustainability aspects in product development, and the reasons for these challenges.

To fulfil this aim, a literature study and a multiple case study were conducted at two international, listed, manufacturing companies in Sweden. Empirical data was collected using semi-structured interviews with two employees at each company and by analyzing the companies’ latest sustainability report.

Empirical results include two context-dependent descriptions of how manufacturing companies include sustainability aspects in product development, 21 challenges the companies face, and 14 reasons for those challenges.

Conclusions include: (1) the role of conventional methods when including sustainability aspects in product development has been largely ignored in prior research; (2) a company’s product owner influences the inclusion of sustainability aspects in product development, and in product requirements in particular; (3) the following three challenges are proposed incorporated in a comprehensive framework of challenges that has been developed in prior research:

  • Making suppliers fulfil the sustainability requirements that are placed on them.
  • Transforming sustainability aspects, or general goals, into measurable requirements that contribute to reduced environmental impact from products while at the same time contributing to competitive profit.
  • Identifying how to reach economic goals more efficiently with a more sustainable initiative or solution than other initiatives.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2018. p. 108
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Licentiate Thesis, ISSN 0280-7971 ; 1828
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-153234 (URN)10.3384/diss.diva-153234 (DOI)9789176851524 (ISBN)
Presentation
2018-12-20, ACAS: Hus A, Campus Valla, Linköping, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-12-19 Created: 2018-12-04 Last updated: 2018-12-19Bibliographically approved

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Paulson, FredrikSundin, Erik

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