Innovation

Innovation

Sustainable innovations allow business to contribute to a better world and improve profitability at the same time. So why don’t more businesses do this? 
NBS April 18, 2017

Innovation and sustainability drive profitability. 

It’s hard to create something new, desirable, and commercially viable. It requires businesses to blend the spontaneity of discovery with rational, systematic analysis. 

Create shared value through innovation. 

In a new project, organizations like 3M and the Canadian Oil Sands Alliance (COSIA) are working with researchers to map their current innovation processes, identify areas for high-leverage changes, and work through those changes. They’re doing collaborative work that supports discovery and analysis. 
 
By tweaking innovation processes, these companies can systematically produce innovations that create value for business and for society. 
News and Events
The NBS Innovation Project
Tara Hadler
Pam Laughland
3M and COSIA are no strangers to innovation. They and other companies, big and small, take their innovation processes seriously. See how companies are committing to innovation, creating positive changes for employees, customers, society, and the environment.  

Start orienting innovation toward sustainability. 

NBS research reveals how sustainability innovation is different from conventional innovation. It identifies the stages of innovation that companies move through on their journey toward sustainability, and pinpoints the specific practices to enhance sustainability performance. 
 
These resources provide a framework, tools, and best practices to help companies in their journey toward sustainable innovation. 
Reports and Articles
Anthea Rowe

Innovation doesn’t have to mean re-inventing the wheel.   

Plenty of innovations for sustainability warrant mention. We offer insights into the types of innovations that are sustainable and the processes to help businesses get there. 

We draw these insights from businesses and researchers trying to unlock business potential for innovation. Consider how these efforts could be applied in your own organization. 

Related Resources

Research Insight

Use the following eight strategies to design products and services that are more environmentally and socially responsible.

Lauren Turner
Reports and Articles

Charged with fostering innovation in your firm? Start by broadening your network and collaborating with unconventional partners.

Anthea Rowe
Reports and Articles

Differentiating products and lowering prices isn't enough. Maintaining a competitive edge involves your firm’s ability to partner up and change status quo. 

Lauren Turner
Reports and Articles

Renewable energy can seem a peaceful landscape of sun and wind: but different technologies are busily competing. Joern Hoppmann explains why some triumph.

Emily Joldersma
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The Justice Video Network processes approximately 135,000 accused criminals per year, minimizing travel costs and GHG emissions.

Anthea Rowe
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This report presents key business sustainability challenges for 2012 that firms should watch for – and proactively address.

NBS
Video

Tima Bansal reveals preliminary findings from management researcher Richard Adams on sustainability-oriented innovation and outlines its three stages.

NBS
Reports and Articles

Firms in developed economies should watch for systems-changing innovations happening elsewhere. 

Lauren Turner
Research Insight

Sustainable innovation is a process. And sometimes, this involves collecting – and implementing – feedback from thousands of stakeholders. 

Tara Hadler
Research Insight

Following oil spills like the Exxon Valdez, new environmental regulations drove the fastest changes in oil tanker design the industry had ever seen.

Thomas Long
Research Insight

Research suggests norms for political correctness can positively effect workplace creativity by sharpening an individual’s contribution to a group.

Kevin Hurren
Research Insight

In small businesses, size and flat hierarchies make ecodesign changes easier to implement.

Marie Demode
Research Insight

What do a tire company, yogurt company, and luxury goods producer have in common? Five practices to reduce waste, improve reputation, and increase revenues.

Marie Demode