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Abstract

Multinational companies in the fashion industry operate on a global level. Fashion was one of the first industries that outsourced production to developing countries and allowed exploitation and environmental pollution to remain hidden. But concerns regarding the industry's (un)sustainability are rising, regarding both the environmental and the social aspects. Fashion consumption is on the rise and the industry is among the most polluting ones. With this paper, I join the debate on how to force fashion MNCs to operate sustainably. There are two opposing views on where change should come: from above (regulation) or from below (change in customer habits and the activity of sustainable fashion NGOs). According to one view, fashion is underregulated and only legislation can be a solution: MNCs will only operate sustainably if they are forced by law. The other group claims that customers should drive green initiatives as their demand catalyzes MNC production. I claim that neither side is enough, as sustainability is not necessarily the number one consideration for customers or policymakers. In this conceptual paper, I use document analysis as a qualitative approach, and descriptive statistics to support my position.

Open access

Abstract

This research investigates the proactive and reactive measures applied by Czech and Hungarian automotive companies following Russia's invasion of Ukraine. We apply a qualitative methodology and analyse interviews with company managers to learn about the applied measures. The results reveal that the resilience gained during the COVID-19 pandemic involved proactive measures, which companies have kept in place. Reactive measures involved production replanning and alternative transportation. Adopting multiple sourcing strategies in the automotive sector is limited and more reactive rather than proactive. The important antecedents of agility are information sharing and cooperation within multinationals.

Open access

Abstract

The Environmental Protection Agency classifies healthcare as one of the leading energy-consuming industries. Extensive energy is needed around the clock in healthcare institutions for lighting, ventilation, and operating medical equipment. However, there is a growing concern over the sustainability of energy utilization by healthcare institutions worldwide. This narrative review thus seeks to examine energy efficiency and utilization in healthcare institutions and energy management and conservation techniques and make recommendations for future optimal usage. The paper notes that healthcare institutions use different quantities of energy from diverse sources, including hydropower, biomass, solar energy, and wind power. However, energy consumption varies from one institution to another, with the number of beds and intensity of healthcare operations, with an average of 0.27 MWh m−2. Moreover, this review also identified various techniques and measures to enhance energy efficiency, such as the variant refrigerant flow technology and the combination of renewable energy sources with diesel generators to reduce the cost of electricity. Overall, healthcare institutions need energy management systems such as automated energy monitoring technologies, to check the systems' efficiency. The same techniques can also help Middle Eastern healthcare institutions with efficient energy utilization. Ultimately, the literature review aims to introduce an approach that focuses on reducing site-level consumption of energy while increasing the quality of the energy used and hence, helping reduce energy costs while conserving the environment.

Open access

Abstract

The objective of this paper is to review the academic literature and identify best practices on the integration of artificial intelligence and sustainable technologies in strategic renewable energy and Power-to-X projects globally. We reflect upon the way in which exemplary case studies can be used to foster a common shared view among different policy makers to highlight new ways through which energy efficiency and systemic improvements in the energy sector may be achieved while curbing carbon emissions and addressing climate change. The main risks, challenges and mitigations for integrating artificial intelligence and sustainable technologies in energy systems are also educed from both the academic literature as well as interviews with experts. Our findings indicate that while the integration of artificial intelligence and sustainable technologies can support energy efficiency and systemic improvements in the energy sector, there are several risks that were not previously identified in the literature. Critical areas of future development for academic research as well as opportunities for professional practice are presented.

Open access

Abstract

In a research study among university students regarding technological change, equality and environmental sustainability, deep-seated dichotomies were found in the students' mental images of the future. This study aims to present these dichotomies as well as propose explanations for them, adding to our understanding of what kind of behavioural barriers inhibit sustainability transformations. The results show that the interviewees truly struggle to decide if the world really is on fire regarding environmental change, if technology is capable of solving the situation, if inequality is truly a problem, and how they can relate to all this. The dichotomies that we found suggest that on the one hand, they find no comfort in the dominant techno-optimistic, eco-modernisation narratives and, on the other hand, they are not aware of any alternatives. The results underline the existence of psychological phenomena such as optimism bias or psychological distancing. In our paper, we also address whether dichotomous thinking poses a problem or whether we may have to accept that dichotomies can become the norm when contemplating the world in its increasing complexity.

Open access

Abstract

This study empirically examines knowledge spillover in Visegrad Four (V4) countries, with an emphasis on global value chains (GVCs). Using patent statistics, the study aims to estimate the knowledge production function, including domestic and foreign knowledge stocks, and found that international knowledge spillover does not contribute much to the innovation of the local economy in the V4 countries because of three factors: i) multinational corporations' (MNCs) strategy to locate a low-cost production base, ii) MNCs' strategy to locate supporting (process, production or non-core product related) research and development (R&D) activities and iii) limited technology spillover effect from MNCs to local firms. Local firms in the V4 countries became dependent on the peripheral products and technologies provided by MNCs, and as a result, local R&D activities in the V4 countries were diverted from patentable innovation.

Open access

Abstract

Managing sustainability-oriented organizational changes has received increasing attention in the international literature from the perspectives of corporations and universities. Nevertheless, researching sustainability change management (SCM) from the perspective of the cooperation of corporations and universities, especially the underlying factors of the cooperation, remained overlooked until now. Based on the change management (CM) literature, this research focuses on an international inter-organizational network with universities and corporations, and empirically studies their autonomous SCM characteristics and the collaborative planning dynamics of a sustainability-led innovation (SLI) project. Results show that SLIs cannot only come from SCM strategies, but emerging opportunities within inter-organizational networks could also induce them. Important contextual factors of CM, i.e., regarding strategy, structure, and capabilities, however, could and should be interpreted during SCM and SLI project planning, as these underlying factors force cooperation partners to compromise with each other in project scope. The results suggest that compromises could not undertake autonomous strategy alignment or capability building, only minor changes in the project scope which will still allow leveraging existing capabilities or require a few additional structural coordination mechanisms. The findings contribute to the literature by highlighting empirical examples of inter-organizational SLI challenges, deriving from autonomous balancing needs during SCM.

Open access

Abstract

Measurement of the performances of inflation targeting (IT) frameworks has been of interest to researchers ever since IT began to be implemented as a monetary policy strategy. The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the impact of domestic and international determinants on success in achieving inflation targets of the selected European economies. Our methodological framework is based on the application of a non-stationary discrete choice model. For this research, four European economies are considered: Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Serbia. Their results regarding IT policy can provide a useful benchmark for similar economies that are either planning to adopt the same monetary policy framework or have begun to apply it recently. Our findings indicate that IT success is primarily under the control of monetary policymakers by key policy rate mechanism, but that the impact of additional domestic and international factors that are not easily managed by the central bank like budget balance, exchange rate, growth rate, current account balance, labor cost growth, loans, Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices, inflation, and GDP gap of the Eurozone, can be also significant. Consequently, monetary policymakers need to take into account a wide range of inflation factors, including foreign spillover effects, so that tools for their neutralization can be helpful in achieving the targeted goals.

Open access

Abstract

A set of simple and complex indicators is used to measure the economic condition of economies, and the analysis can be conducted in a static or dynamic approach. This article proposes the author's macroeconomic condition index (MCI), which is based on the popular misery index, supplementing the unemployment and inflation rates with two variables: GDP growth rate and budget deficit. The aim of the study is to assess the macroeconomic situation of Poland against the average for the EU, using the above-mentioned measure. The time scope of the study covers the years 2011–2020, with particular emphasis on the effects of the first year of the Covid crisis. The results indicate that throughout the period the economic situation in Poland in terms of the four variables combined was relatively favourable, although less stable. A sharp downturn occurred in 2020, both domestically and on average in the EU. The main determinants of the worse condition were a decline in the GDP growth rate and an increase in the budget deficit, with relatively steady unemployment and inflation.

Full access

Abstract

It has been known for decades that in a given year and in a given country, with the rise in lifetime income, life expectancy also rises. The difference between the richest and the poorest stratas' life expectancies is called the longevity gap. Recently, as the gap has generally been growing, it has received more and more attention. The issue is important in itself, but it has also an obvious impact on redistribution in the pension system: the greater the longevity gap, the greater is the redistribution from the low benefit pensioners to the high benefit ones in a given pension system. Econometrically estimating the life expectancy-income function may help the analysis. In our short study, first we give a simple estimation, and then we show the influence of the estimate on the redistribution.

Open access