Environmental technology exports: Analyzing Swedish government and firms' initiatives
2012 (English)Conference paper, Presentation (Other academic)
Some countries have historically relied to a great extent on exports as an important component of theireconomic system. With the current globalization trends and increased competitiveness, promotingexports has therefore become a common strategy in order to boost economic growth. Exports ofenvironmental technologies represent a new window of opportunity for economic growth and acontribution to global sustainability. For this objective, governments provide different initiativesaimed at promoting foreign commerce among firms. The aim of this article is to assess the perceptionof the effectiveness of governmental initiatives for export promotion among Swedish environmentaltechnology firms. In addition, the article addresses firms’ internal initiatives to reach potential foreignmarkets through the use of modern communication channels. Data about 728 Swedish environmentaltechnology companies was collected and analyzed by using a combination of desktop research and aweb-based survey. The findings show a relatively high export orientation among the respondentcompanies. However, a majority of the respondents claim not to be aware of governmental initiativesthat fit their particular needs. Those who do show a high level of participation in such initiatives, butmost could not relate this participation to successful businesses abroad. From the firms’ perspective,presence on the Internet was considered to be a plausible indicator of their internal initiatives tocapture potential foreign customers. An analysis of the companies’ web sites, their languagecustomization options and the information they provide was undertaken. Results show that a largenumber of companies have functional web sites. However, the percentage of web sites with languagecustomization options was relatively low.The findings suggest that governmental initiatives have to consider the particular composition andneeds of the environmental technology sector in order to be more effective. On the other hand,although companies show to be proactive in the use of the Internet for increasing their outreach,language customization must be addressed as an important component when using such a tool. Bothgovernmental and firms’ initiatives remain important contributions to export success. In this regard,collaboration and communication between governmental export promotion agencies and firmsrepresents an important first step.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Export Promotion, Perceived Effectiveness, Firm-level analysis, Web site analysis.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-85936OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-85936DiVA: diva2:573876
Greening of Industry Network (GIN) 2012, 22-24 October 2012, Linköping, Sweden