An empirical evaluation of the association between some form of LCA implementation and environmental strategy choice in Colombian firms
Within the Resource-Based View of corporate environmental strategy, the firm‘s simultaneous investments in various resource domains are manifested in differentiated levels of environmental proactivity. In particular, a minimum requirement for the implementation of a product stewardship strategy seems to be that some form of life cycle assessment (LCA) be implemented. Henceforth, the authors set out to test empirically the extent to which firm-level investments in three resource domains, i.e. formal management systems and procedures (including LCA), employee training and participation, and conventional green competencies related to product development and manufacturing technologies, are related to each other and configure a corporate proactive approach towards the environment. The data used in this study were collected as part of a research project conducted in Bogotá, Colombia, and obtained through the application of an online survey based on items that measured preference statements through Likert scales. The final sample consisted of 130 firms, mostly related with manufacturing activities. Eleven items measuring environmental practices were subjected to exploratory principal component analysis (EPCA) and then to cluster analysis using a non-hierarchical procedure. Results suggest that firms in the process of implementing eco-design and green purchasing strategies will have likely implemented input substitution and process modification practices in a routine fashion beforehand. There is also a suggestion that current stakeholder management in the supply chain limits the inclusion of critical stakeholders that are relevant for the integration of the voice of the environment into product design and development, customers in particular.