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Missing Attention to Power Dynamics in Collaborative Multi-Actor Business Models for Sustainability

Skritsovali, K, Randles, S and Hannibal, C (2023) Missing Attention to Power Dynamics in Collaborative Multi-Actor Business Models for Sustainability. Sustainability, 15 (3). ISSN 2071-1050

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Open Access URL: https://doi.org/10.3390/su15032022 (Published version)


Advances within the Sustainability Business Models (SBMs) literature from the perspective of boundary-spanning business models have received limited attention. Further, discourse within the SBMs literature exploring collaborative practices adopts the perspective that collaborative forums are always a ‘force for good’. This paper reviews important theories and relevant literature and calls into question the dearth of research examining business models for sustainability and focuses on the role that power, and power relations, play in the shaping and steering of value creation. In advancing research on sustainable operations, we assess the implications of ignoring uneven power, and draw attention to the affects and consequences of this omission in the study of SBMs. By embracing an alternative, deliberative democracy perspective, we challenge the sub-literature on collaborative multi-actor business models. In taking an inquisitive and critical stance on omnipresent power dynamics, we shine a light on the consequences of uneven power across multi-actor structures by augmenting research with practical insights from selected vignettes. Our proposed concept of a democratic business model for sustainability offers a new strand of theoretical development and a fresh perspective on the sustainability and business models literature.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: sustainable business models; multi-actor collaborative forums; power; deliberative democracy
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Divisions: Business & Management (from Sep 19)
Publisher: MDPI AG
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2023 13:09
Last Modified: 24 Jan 2023 13:09
DOI or ID number: 10.3390/su15032022
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/18699
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