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Innovations through environmental management

An important goal of ecological modernisation is to link environmentally compatible management with an improvement in competitiveness. Key instruments in this context are standards for environmental management systems such as the Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS). Whilst the cost-benefit ratio of EMAS has already been researched, the effects on innovation and competitiveness have not yet been systematically examined. This study has closed this gap in research with deep case studies and telephone surveys. It is possible to derive the recommendation from this study, conducted by the ZEW and the IÖW, that companies can enhance their competitiveness by interlinking environmental and innovation management. The crucial factor is the R&D department which should be involved in the further development of EMAS in order to achieve a stronger link between product-related and strategic questions.