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Opportunities, approaches, and impediments to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry DeBoer, Jennifer Lynn 2019

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  OPPORTUNITIES, APPROACHES, AND IMPEDIMENTS TO ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY IN THE US PULP AND PAPER INDUSTRY by  Jennifer Lynn DeBoer  B.A., University of California, Santa Cruz, 2006 M.B.A., Humboldt State University, 2009  A DISSERTATION SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE AND POSTDOCTORAL STUDIES (Forestry)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver) August 2019  © Jennifer Lynn DeBoer, 2019   ii  The following individuals certify that they have read, and recommend to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for acceptance, the dissertation entitled:  Opportunities, approaches, and impediments to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry  Submitted by  Jennifer Lynn DeBoer   in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of  Doctor of Philosophy                    in  Forestry                     Examining Committee: Dr. Christopher Gaston, Forestry          Co-supervisor  Dr. Rajat Panwar, Management (Appalachian State University)      Co-supervisor  Dr. Scott Renneckar, Forestry          Supervisory Committee Member  Dr. James Vercammen           University Examiner  Dr. Taraneh Sowlati            University Examiner               Additional Supervisory Committee Members:  Dr. Eric Hansen, Forestry (Oregon State University)        Supervisory Committee Member    iii  Abstract  The adoption and implementation of environmental sustainability initiatives is of great strategic importance to the US pulp and paper industry (PPI).  Not only is the industry subjected to an intense pressure to be more environmentally responsible and reduce its environmental impact, but it is well positioned to leverage numerous opportunities contained within environmental sustainability initiatives.  How do businesses in the US PPI respond to this complex labyrinth of opportunities and challenges, and what approaches do they take?  The primary motivation of this dissertation is to address these neglected questions.     Specifically, this dissertation investigates opportunities, approaches, and impediments to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.  First, I consolidate knowledge linking environmental sustainability initiatives and private sector business competitiveness in order to draw research implications for the emerging circular bioeconomy.  Second, I identify and characterize businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI, and subsequently propose a typology to characterize diverse approaches to environmental sustainability.  Finally, I examine and analyze regulatory tensions among businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability issues in the US PPI.    Based on the empirical findings from this research, I suggest that while opportunities certainly exist, researchers must develop better approaches to assessing and measuring how and when environmental sustainability initiatives can simultaneously contribute to business competitiveness and environmental sustainability.  This research advances our understanding of factors which influence the adoption and implementation of environmental initiatives in the US PPI, as well as opportunities and impediments businesses face when addressing environmental sustainability issues.   iv  Lay Summary This dissertation helps clarify how the US pulp and paper industry approaches environmental challenges and opportunities.  In the past two decades, the industry's response to environmental demands has become increasingly important, but this response is not well understood.  This dissertation seeks to (i) better understand the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness, (ii) identify and characterize businesses’ motivation for, and engagement in, environmental sustainability initiatives, and (iii) better understand challenges businesses face in adopting environmental initiatives in the US pulp and paper industry.       v  Preface Research Program Design  The research presented in this dissertation represents my original and independent work, except where I acknowledge the contributions of others.  I identified research questions and objectives, designed the research methodologies, collected and analyzed primary and secondary data, and prepared each manuscript with the guidance and support of my co-supervisors and advisory committee.   Publication  A version of Chapter 2 has been published as follows:  DeBoer, J., Panwar, R., Kozak, R., and Cashore, B. 2019. Squaring the circle: Refining the competitiveness logic for the circular bioeconomy. Forest Policy and Economics. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.forpol.2019.01.003   Ethics Approval  The research protocol for the methodology presented in this dissertation was approved by the UBC Behavioral Research Ethics Board (Certificate # H17-02063) on 14 February 2018.   vi  Table of Contents Abstract .......................................................................................................................................... iii Lay Summary ................................................................................................................................. iv Preface..............................................................................................................................................v Table of Contents ........................................................................................................................... vi List of Tables ................................................................................................................................. xi List of Figures ............................................................................................................................... xii List of Abbreviations ................................................................................................................... xiii Acknowledgements ...................................................................................................................... xiv Dedication .................................................................................................................................... xvi Chapter 1: Introduction ....................................................................................................................1 Chapter 2: Refining the link between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness – Research implications for the circular bioeconomy ...........................................6 2.1 Introduction ........................................................................................................................... 6 2.2 Environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness ................................ 9 2.3 Methodology ....................................................................................................................... 11 2.4 Descriptive analysis ............................................................................................................ 14 2.5 Findings............................................................................................................................... 17 2.5.1 Multiple ways to conceptualize environmental sustainability initiatives .................... 18 2.5.1.1 Regulatory environmental initiatives .................................................................... 18 2.5.1.2 Voluntary environmental initiatives ..................................................................... 19 2.5.2 Multiple ways to conceptualize business competitiveness .......................................... 20 vii  2.5.3 The confounding nature of the link between regulatory environmental initiatives and business competitiveness ...................................................................................................... 21 2.5.4 The confounding nature of the link between voluntary environmental initiatives and business competitiveness ...................................................................................................... 23 2.5.5 Factors influencing the link between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness ...................................................................................................... 25 2.5.5.1 Mediating effects .................................................................................................. 25 2.5.5.2 Moderating effects ................................................................................................ 26 2.5.5.3 Causal ambiguity .................................................................................................. 27 2.6 Lessons learned for the circular bioeconomy ..................................................................... 28 2.6.1 Construct conceptualizations ....................................................................................... 29 2.6.2 Methodological sophistication ..................................................................................... 31 2.6.3 Ubiquity of adoption .................................................................................................... 32 2.6.4 Clarity about means and ends ...................................................................................... 33 2.7 Conclusion .......................................................................................................................... 35 Chapter 3: An investigation of diverse approaches to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry ..........................................................................................................................38 3.1 Introduction ......................................................................................................................... 38 3.2 Conceptual background and theoretical underpinning ....................................................... 39 3.2.1 Resource-based view and natural-resource-based view .............................................. 40 3.2.2 Institutional theory ....................................................................................................... 42 viii  3.3 Methodology ....................................................................................................................... 45 3.3.1 Research approach ....................................................................................................... 45 3.3.2 Sample selection .......................................................................................................... 46 3.3.3 Data collection ............................................................................................................. 48 3.3.3.1 Primary data sources ............................................................................................. 49 3.3.3.2 Secondary data sources ......................................................................................... 50 3.3.4 Data analysis ................................................................................................................ 53 3.4 Findings............................................................................................................................... 55 3.4.1 Competitiveness ........................................................................................................... 59 3.4.1.1 Financial competitiveness ..................................................................................... 59 3.4.1.2 Market competitiveness ........................................................................................ 60 3.4.1.3 Reputational competitiveness ............................................................................... 61 3.4.1.4 Operational competitiveness ................................................................................. 63 3.4.1.5 Technological competitiveness ............................................................................. 64 3.4.2 Legitimation ................................................................................................................. 65 3.4.3 Ecological responsibility .............................................................................................. 66 3.5 Motivation and engagement typology ................................................................................ 67 3.5.1 Traditionalists .............................................................................................................. 69 3.5.2 Opportunists ................................................................................................................. 70 3.5.3 Pragmatists ................................................................................................................... 70 ix  3.5.4 Idealists ........................................................................................................................ 70 3.6 Discussion ........................................................................................................................... 71 3.6.1 Managerial implications ............................................................................................... 71 3.6.2 Policy implications....................................................................................................... 72 3.6.3 Theoretical implications ............................................................................................... 73 3.6.4 Limitations and future research ................................................................................... 75 3.7 Conclusion .......................................................................................................................... 75 Chapter 4: Impediments to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry – The role of regulatory tensions .............................................................................................................77 4.1 Introduction ......................................................................................................................... 77 4.2 Environmental sustainability and business competitiveness .............................................. 79 4.3 Action and inaction toward environmental sustainability .................................................. 81 4.4 Methodology ....................................................................................................................... 82 4.4.1 Research approach ....................................................................................................... 82 4.4.2 Sample selection .......................................................................................................... 83 4.4.3 Data collection ............................................................................................................. 84 4.4.4 Data analysis ................................................................................................................ 86 4.5 Findings............................................................................................................................... 86 4.5.1 Regulatory impracticality............................................................................................. 88 4.5.2 Regulatory inequity ...................................................................................................... 90 x  4.5.3 Regulatory interaction .................................................................................................. 92 4.5.4 Regulatory oversight .................................................................................................... 93 4.5.5 Regulatory rationale ..................................................................................................... 94 4.5.6 Regulatory uncertainty ................................................................................................. 96 4.6 Discussion ........................................................................................................................... 98 4.6.1 Managerial implications ............................................................................................... 98 4.6.2 Policy implications....................................................................................................... 99 4.6.3 Theoretical implications ............................................................................................... 99 4.6.4 Limitations and future research ................................................................................. 101 4.7 Conclusion ........................................................................................................................ 102 Chapter 5: Conclusion..................................................................................................................103 References ....................................................................................................................................107 Appendices ...................................................................................................................................132 Appendix 1: Primary Participant Consent Form ..................................................................... 132 Appendix 2: Secondary Participant Consent Form ................................................................. 136 Appendix 3: Interview Protocol .............................................................................................. 140 Appendix 4: Primary Participant Letter of Initial Contact...................................................... 144 Appendix 5: Secondary Participant Letter of Initial Contact .................................................. 146    xi  List of Tables  Table 1: Organizing framework ...................................................................................................... 5 Table 2: Journals in which the reviewed articles were published ................................................. 16 Table 3: Business competitiveness measures, classifications, and exemplary citations............... 21 Table 4: Relationships observed between regulatory environmental initiatives and different dimensions of business competitiveness ........................................................................... 23 Table 5: Relationships observed between voluntary environmental initiatives and different dimensions of business competitiveness ........................................................................... 24 Table 6: Theoretical perspectives applied ..................................................................................... 45 Table 7: Case company demographics ......................................................................................... 48 Table 8: Motivations for environmental sustainability initiatives ................................................ 56 Table 9: Engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives ................................................. 58 Table 10: Regulatory compliance of cases studied ....................................................................... 88   xii  List of Figures Figure 1: Number of articles published by year of publication .................................................... 15 Figure 2: Mediation effects in the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link ....... 26 Figure 3: Multiple case study procedure ....................................................................................... 55 Figure 4: Motivation and engagement typology ........................................................................... 69 Figure 5: Regulatory tensions identified ....................................................................................... 87   xiii  List of Abbreviations CAA = Clean Air Act  CWA = Clean Water Act ECHO = Enforcement and Compliance History Online  EPA = Environmental Protection Agency  FSC = Forest Stewardship Council  GHG = Greenhouse gas  KLD = Kinder, Lydenberg, Domini  MACT = Maximum Achievable Control Technology  NAICS = North American Industry Classification System  NRBV = Natural resource-based view  P2 = Pollution Prevention PEFC = Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes  PPI = Pulp and paper industry  PwC = PricewaterhouseCoopers  RBV = Resource-based view  RCRA = Resource Conservation and Recovery Act  RSEI = Risk-Screening Environmental Indicators SFI = Sustainable Forestry Initiative  TAPPI = Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry TRI = Toxic Release Inventory     xiv  Acknowledgements My dissertation and academic journey would not have been possible without the help, support, and guidance of many people.  First and foremost, I am immensely grateful for my supervisors, Rajat Panwar and Chris Gaston.  Rajat, you are the reason I am here today.  Thank you for believing in me, for always making time for me, and for pushing me but never letting me fall.  Chris, thank you for being such a wonderful friend, guide, and mentor.  I am profoundly appreciative of your generosity towards students, and hope I’ll be able to do the same for my students someday.   I would like to thank my committee members, Eric Hansen and Scott Renneckar.  Eric, thank you for supporting and inspiring me throughout this process.  My dissertation was undoubtedly improved by your efforts.  Scott, thank you for your guidance, encouragement, and uplifting sense of humor.   To the fabulous Jennifer Griffin, thank you for connecting me with Rajat, and in so doing allowing me to realize my dream of becoming an academic.   I would like to sincerely thank the University of British Columbia, the Faculty of Forestry, and Mary and David Macaree for providing financial support, which allowed me to complete my PhD program.   To everyone in the US pulp and paper industry who took the time to share their perspectives and participate in my research, it was an honor to have the opportunity to speak with and learn from you.   I would like to express heartfelt thanks to my PhD cohort – Alice Palmer, Maria Jose Murcia, Meike Siegner, and Vilbert Vabi Vamuloh.  While we all come from different places and are on different paths, we are and always will be family.  xv  I would also like to acknowledge and thank the many family members who have supported and motivated me throughout the years.  Special thanks to my father for truly listening to me, despite my sometimes scattered and endless thoughts, and for always pushing me to be the best I can be.  Special thanks to my mother for being my biggest fan; no one believes in me as much as she does.  Grandma, thank you for passing down your adventurous and competitive nature; you’ve always been an empowering role model for me.  Grandpa, thank you for sharing your love of nature with me; I greatly admire your efforts to protect and conserve the great outdoors.   Although they won’t read this, I would like to thank Mushko and Grim for the loyal companionship and unconditional love they have provided me.  Mushko, you’ll always be in my heart.   Finally, I would like to express my admiration, love, and gratitude to my partner, Kurt Stalnaker.  Without his unwavering love and support, I could not have completed this PhD program.  Kurt, thank you for loving me no matter what and always encouraging me to follow my dreams.   xvi  Dedication To Kurt, my sun and stars.     1  Chapter 1: Introduction Facing increasingly disruptive and dynamic market challenges, the pulp and paper industry (PPI), widely considered a mature and conservative industry (Pätäri et al., 2016), provides an intriguing context in which to study approaches, opportunities, and impediments to environmental sustainability.  For example, growth in international trade is contributing to the globalization of the PPI.  Emerging markets, such as those in Latin America and Southeast Asia, are rapidly and substantively challenging established markets, such as those in North America and Western Europe, where environmental regulation is considerably more stringent (Toppinen et al., 2017b).  Industry consolidation through large-scale international mergers and acquisitions is augmenting market share (D’Amours et al., 2014), and many perceive the tightening of raw material supply may further increase merger and acquisition activity in the near future (Palmer, 2019).  Unpredictable currency fluctuations are exerting considerable risks on the PPI (Fisher, 2015), particularly in the US, where the rise of the dollar has negatively impacted US trade (Tully, 2016).  Many suggest regulatory changes, particularly those occurring in the US, are increasing uncertainty in PPI markets (Näyhä and Pesonen, 2014; United States Subcommittee on the Environment, 2017).  Substitute products, such as digital media for newsprint and corrugated plastic for paperboard, are compelling pulp and paper businesses to consider new business opportunities (Toppinen et al., 2015), with increasing interest in the emerging bio-based economy, also known as the bioeconomy (Bugge et al., 2016).  Finally, pulp and paper businesses face increasing pressure to address environmental issues, such as climate change, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, wastewater treatment, hazardous waste, resource scarcity, ecosystem decline, and deforestation (Ashrafi et al., 2015; Pätäri et al., 2016).   2  Facing such complex and critical economic, political, technological, and environmental challenges, many suggest the PPI pursue environmental sustainability initiatives (Hetemäki et al., 2013; Panwar et al., 2015; Pätäri et al., 2016), such as initiatives relevant to the emerging bioeconomy (Hansen, 2016; Näyhä and Pesonen, 2014; Toppinen et al., 2017a).  Emphasizing the need for a paradigm shift in the PPI, Näyhä and Pesonen assert, “a need to innovate and redefine business models is particularly urgent in the PPI, with its frequent mill closures and profitability problems.  The emerging bio-based economy (bioeconomy) is a promising sector with notable potential for the future and many business opportunities,” (2014, p. 260).    Opportunities for pulp and paper businesses pursuing environmental sustainability initiatives include (i) the development of new products, processes, and markets, such as bioproducts and biomass (Brunnhofer et al., 2019), (ii) improved relations with stakeholders, contributing to business competitiveness and legitimacy (Tuppura et al., 2015), (iii) enhanced resource productivity, as sustainable forest management practices are more resilient to environmental change (Steffen et al., 2015) and (iv) an untapped customer base, as the benefits of environmentally sustainable products and processes are not yet well understood by consumers (Holopainen et al., 2014).   Despite such opportunities, the role of environmental sustainability in the pulp and paper industry, and broader forest-based sector, remains debated and contested (Espinoza et al., 2012; Pätäri et al., 2016; Vlosky et al., 2015).  In recent years, pulp and paper businesses have increasingly adopted environmental sustainability initiatives.  For example, International Paper, the world’s largest pulp and paper company, aimed to reduce its GHG emissions by 15 percent between 2000 and 2010, and 20 percent between 2010 and 2020.  International Paper exceeded the 2010 goal by reducing its GHG emissions by a total of 40 percent over the ten-year period, 3  which subsequently contributed to a 2012 Climate Leadership Award by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  Yet, scholars and practitioners indicate concerns regarding the degree to which pulp and paper businesses engage in environmental sustainability initiatives (Gulbrandsen and Stenqvist, 2013), given inherent tensions between environmental performance and business competitiveness (Pätäri et al., 2016).  Comparing 2012 Climate Leadership Award recipients with non-recipients in the same industry, Byrd et al. (2013) found recipients’ GHG emissions were not significantly different from non-recipients.  Tuppura et al. suggest pulp and paper businesses may “adopt fashionable [environmental] criteria to divert criticism of industry activities instead of acting responsively to external constituents such as environmental and social groups,” (2015, p. 364).  This rather subdued view of environmental sustainability in the PPI is consistent with its oft characterized production orientation (Toppinen et al., 2013), which emphasizes production and sales of commodity goods (Hansen et al., 2007), rather than extended product features (Hansen and Bush, 1999), such as environmental sustainability attributes.  Clearly, a better understanding of the importance and implications of environmental sustainability in the PPI is a necessary first step in addressing these phenomena (Arminen et al., 2015).  This dissertation is written in manuscript form and comprises three separate but related manuscripts (Chapter 2, Chapter 3, and Chapter 4).  The overarching objective of this dissertation involves an investigation of the opportunities, approaches, and impediments to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.  In Chapter 2, titled “Refining the link between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness: Research implications for the circular bioeconomy,” I consolidate existing knowledge to analyze the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness in order to draw research 4  implications for the emerging circular bioeconomy.  In Chapter 3, titled “An investigation of diverse approaches to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry,” I investigate businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives, and subsequently propose a typology to characterize diverse approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  In Chapter 4, titled “Impediments to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry: The role of regulatory tensions,” I examine compliance with environmental regulation to better understand whether, how, and why regulatory tensions manifest among businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability issues in the US PPI.  Table 1 presents the organizing framework of this dissertation.    5  Table 1: Organizing framework  6  Chapter 2: Refining the link between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness – Research implications for the circular bioeconomy  2.1 Introduction Environmental sustainability initiatives have been advanced as promising pathways to achieve multiple Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Agreement commitments (Hetemäki et al., 2017).  To achieve such goals, the participation of private businesses is critical for the successful implementation of environmental sustainability initiatives, which are often sought through a competitive logic.  Scholars suggest environmental sustainability initiatives offer enormous competitive opportunities for businesses in the PPI (Hetemäki et al., 2013; Panwar et al., 2015; Pätäri et al., 2016), particularly initiatives related to the bioeconomy and circular economy (Hansen, 2016; Näyhä and Pesonen, 2014; Toppinen et al., 2017a).  The bioeconomy is defined as “an economy where the basic building blocks for materials, chemicals, and energy are derived from renewable biological resources,” (McCormick and Kautto, 2013, p. 2589) and is often recognized as one of many pathways to achieving a circular economy (Lokesh et al., 2018).  The circular economy aims to replace the linear model of production, consumption, and disposal with a circular model, in which resources, materials, and products are reduced, reused, and recycled within the economy for as long as possible (Merli et al., 2018).  While perspectives on the bioeconomy and circular economy vary according to the stakeholders involved, research conducted in the context of the forest-based sector suggests the concepts are strongly interlinked (D'Amato et al., 2017; Näyhä, 2018).  Integrating synergies of the bioeconomy and circular economy, the circular bioeconomy seeks to comprehensively reconcile economic, environmental, and social 7  objectives (Gregorio et al., 2018).  As the bioeconomy and circular bioeconomy both promulgate and promote the use of renewable resources to enact economy-wide change and provide viable substitution to the current fossil-based economy (D'Amato et al., 2018), the bioeconomy and circular bioeconomy are considered conceptual correlates (Korhonen et al., 2019) and will be used interchangeably. Numerous proposals have been made to promote the bioeconomy within the PPI (Lokesh et al., 2018; McCormick and Kautto, 2013; Priefer et al., 2017), many of which converge around two key players, governing bodies that could galvanize a favorable policy environment and private sector businesses that could mobilize resources to produce and distribute bio-based products and services.  In the latter case, the bioeconomy is seen through a strategic lens to improve competitiveness through access to new markets, the development of new products and services, and the creation of new business models (Antikainen et al., 2017; Hansen, 2016; Korhonen et al., 2017).  While business-level competitiveness is an intuitively appealing outcome to solicit private sector engagement in fostering a bioeconomy, it is important that the link between bioeconomy initiatives and business competitiveness is well understood and carefully articulated.  Given interest in advancing bioeconomy initiatives within the PPI, and bioeconomy research across disciplines, this chapter seeks to critically analyze the proposed link between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness.  Consequently, my research question is: What is currently known about the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness, and how can this knowledge contribute to future research on the circular bioeconomy?  To answer this research question, my coauthors and I conduct an interdisciplinary, systematic review of literature to examine the relationship between private 8  sector business involvement in environmental sustainability initiatives and different dimensions of business competitiveness.  This growing body of literature can offer meaningful insights into how the environmental initiative-business competitiveness link manifests.  These insights, in turn, can help to better articulate the notion of competitiveness within a bioeconomy context.  Based on these insights, several key lessons are drawn from this literature to offer suggestions to clarify the premises and promises of business-level competitiveness through bioeconomy initiatives.  Specifically, we suggest construct clarity, methodological sophistication, ubiquity of adoption by private businesses, and a clear vision of means and ends as four key considerations in fine-tuning and further articulating a competitive logic.  Our findings indicate the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness is complex, nuanced, and ambiguous, presenting on opportunity for additional research to provide deeper insight related to the challenges and opportunities businesses face in linking environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness.  This chapter is organized as follows.  First, a general overview of previous literature that examines the link between businesses’ environmental sustainability initiatives and competitiveness is provided.  Next, the methodology employed to conduct a systematic review of the literature is described, followed by an analysis and synthesis of the literature reviewed to identify key findings.  Finally, we offer implications of these findings for circular bioeconomy research and discuss our conclusions.      9  2.2 Environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness Environmental sustainability initiatives refer to established policies and procedures to systematically measure, monitor, and communicate businesses’ environmental practices and performance (Gilbert and Rasche, 2008; Gilbert et al., 2011).  Numerous rationales have been put forward to explain why businesses pursue, or should pursue, environmental sustainability initiatives (Hart, 2005; Levin et al., 2012), the majority of which converge at what is known as the ‘business case for sustainability’ (Salzmann et al., 2005).  The business case logic touts win-win outcomes, such that environmental sustainability initiatives lead to improved business competitiveness (Schaltegger and Wagner, 2017). Business competitiveness is conceptualized in multiple ways and can include both financial and non-financial performance.  Regardless of the specific measures used to assess competitiveness, it may be defined as “the degree to which a business performs in a marketplace, compared to its major competitors” (Jiang et al., 2016, p.  808).  Due to its intuitive appeal and alignment with traditional business objectives, the business case for sustainability has emerged as the dominant paradigm to promote environmental sustainability among businesses, at least in the developed world (Hockerts, 2015; Panwar et al., 2017).  Nevertheless, extant literature exploring the business case underlying environmental sustainability is riddled with complexities and contradictions (Dowell and Muthulingam, 2017).   The environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link has been studied in two different dimensions: (1) through the effect of mandatory environmental regulation and (2) through the effect of businesses’ voluntary environmental initiatives.  In the regulatory dimension, empirical studies have characterized relationships between mandatory 10  environmental initiatives (e.g., command-and-control regulation) and business competitiveness as positive (e.g., Gabaldón-Estevan et al., 2016), negative (e.g., Rassier and Earnhart, 2010), and insignificant (e.g., Hoberg et al., 2016).  Likewise, in the voluntary dimension, empirical studies have characterized relationships as positive (e.g., Endrikat, 2016), negative (e.g., Bouslah et al., 2010), and insignificant (e.g., Fisher-Vanden and Thorburn, 2011).  Heterogeneity in results is exacerbated by studies that find a more nuanced link between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness.  For example, Lee and Kim (2017) and Trumpp and Guenther (2017) find a U-shaped relationship between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness, where environmental initiatives are negatively related to business competitiveness up to a point, after which they are positively related.  In contrast, Fujii et al. (2013) and Latan et al. (2018) find an inverted U-shaped relationship between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness, where environmental initiatives are initially positively related to business competitiveness, but at a certain point become inversely related.  Further complicating these findings, Testa et al. (2011) find business competitiveness is positively related to mandatory environmental initiatives but negatively related to voluntary environmental initiatives, whereas López-Gamero et al. (2010) find business competitiveness is not significantly related to mandatory environmental initiatives but is positively related to voluntary environmental initiatives. Our fundamental hypothesis is business participation in environmental initiatives may lead to improved competitiveness, but the nature of this relationship is nuanced, which cautions against using the business case for sustainability as a generalized logic.  In the following sections, we conduct a systematic literature review in an attempt to disentangle the complex and nuanced nature of this relationship. 11  2.3 Methodology Systematic literature reviews apply a structured and rigorous approach to the identification, selection, analysis, and synthesis of relevant, high-quality research through a transparent and replicable procedure (Tranfield et al., 2003).  Our approach is similar to systematic literature reviews published in leading peer-reviewed journals (e.g., Aguinis and Glavas, 2012; Williams et al., 2017; Zhang et al., 2014). Our literature review protocol comprised consultation with interdisciplinary experts, specification of inclusion and exclusion criteria, and substantial screening and selection processes.  The Web of Science (WoS) Core Collection, which includes the Science Citation Index, the Social Sciences Citation Index, and the Arts and Humanities Citation Index, was selected as the database of record, as it is a comprehensive and reputable database offering distinctive search features and capabilities suitable to our research objective (Crossan and Apaydin, 2010).  To capture a more current expression of the sustainability-competitiveness link, we confined the review to articles published between 2010 and 2016; similar reviews have explored literature published prior to 2010 (e.g., Horváthová, 2010; Iraldo et al., 2011; Salzmann et al., 2005).  As the nature of the sustainability-competitiveness link varies among developed, emerging, and developing countries (Dögl and Behnam, 2015), we limited the review to articles analyzing this link in the context of developed countries.  This context is well-suited to our study objectives, as the research context of this dissertation concentrates on the US PPI.  Additionally, business-level competitiveness is more commonly emphasized as an outcome of formal bioeconomy initiatives in developed countries (Borgström and Mauerhofer, 2016; Wield, 2013).  We also limited data sources to peer-reviewed journals that 12  are generally perceived as sources of validated knowledge and higher quality scholarship than conference proceedings, book chapters, and grey literature (Podsakoff et al., 2005). As a first step, we formulated preliminary lists of keywords and academic journals to include in our search parameters.  Two keyword search strings were developed.  The first search string captured articles examining environmental sustainability (e.g., “environmental regulation,” “environmental initiatives,” “environmental management system,” “environmental performance,” etc.), while the second search string captured articles examining business competitiveness (e.g., “financial performance,” “reputation,” “innovation,” etc.).  A list of leading academic journals specializing in environmental sustainability, environmental management, strategic management, corporate social responsibility, ecological economics, environmental economics, energy, forestry, geography, and public policy was also developed.  In agreement with previous systematic literature reviews, the lists of keywords and journals were sent to approximately eighty academic experts from diverse disciplinary backgrounds.  Each expert was provided a summary of the research objective, asked to review the preliminary lists of keywords and journals, and provide feedback.  Approximately fifty experts responded, many of whom suggested additional keywords and/or journals.   Next, we updated the search parameters to reflect suggestions received by experts.  Our revised search parameters included 90 peer-reviewed journals.  The WoS database was searched for articles containing keywords, or their derivatives (e.g., “innovat*” was included to capture both “innovate” and “innovation”), in the WoS topic area (i.e., the article’s title, abstract, or keywords).  Our search parameters comprised Boolean operators to identify articles containing at least one keyword from the first search string (i.e., environmental 13  sustainability keywords) and at least one keyword from the second search string (i.e., business competitiveness keywords).  Due to the vast nature these two search strings encompassed, the initial search resulted in more than 10,000 articles.  To refine the search parameters, we retained keywords and journals suggested by at least two experts.  In select cases, keywords were modified to better correspond with the research objective (e.g., “competitive” was modified to “competitive advantage”).  Overall, 85 keywords and phrases were included in the revised search parameters.  The revised search parameters resulted in 1365 potentially relevant articles.  The titles and abstracts of each article were reviewed; 832 articles were removed due to lack of lack of fit with our research objective.  Next, inclusion and exclusion criteria were considered while reviewing the full text of the remaining 533 articles; 334 articles were removed because the articles did not address our research objective.  The remaining 191 articles comprise the final study sample.  All articles were uploaded to NVivo 11 Pro, a data management and thematic coding program, for data analysis and synthesis.   Quantitative and qualitative data analysis was conducted to identify and define key concepts and themes through a process of iterative coding and interpretation.  All articles were deductively and inductively coded.  Deductive codes included the: type of article (e.g., empirical or theoretical); methodology (e.g., qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods); type of environmental initiative (e.g., regulatory or voluntary); level of analysis (e.g., individual, business, institutional, industry, or country); geographic context (e.g., city, state/province, country, region, continent, or global); duration of study (e.g., cross-section, one year, two years, etc.); and theoretical lens (e.g., resource-based view, institutional theory, stakeholder theory, etc.).   14  Following initial coding and data analysis, focused coding was used to sort, analyze, and synthesize data to highlight key themes and provide deeper insight.  For example, given the heterogeneity in operationalizing business competitiveness across different studies in our sample, measures were inductively and iteratively coded and categorized to be able to better analyze our findings (Saldaña, 2015).  Pattern coding, “a way of grouping those summaries into a smaller number of sets, themes, or constructs” (Miles and Huberman, 1994, p.  69), was used to categorize measures of business competitiveness and sustainability initiatives into more parsimonious units of analysis.  Similar measures were grouped together to create homogeneous groups.  For example, studies examining Kinder, Lydenberg, Domini (KLD) environmental indices (coded as environmental rating) and Newsweek’s “Global 100 Green Rankings” (coded as environmental ranking) were grouped together in an Environmental Ratings and Rankings category.    2.4 Descriptive analysis In this section, we provide a descriptive analysis to summarize the main characteristics of the articles reviewed.  Our sample comprises 191 articles published between 2010 and 2016 in leading peer-reviewed journals.  The number of articles that met our search criteria increased by an average of approximately 8% each year of publication (see Figure 1).    15   Figure 1: Number of articles published by year of publication    Next, we list the journals in which the articles reviewed were published (see Table 2).  These journals encompass interdisciplinary research related to environmental sustainability, environmental management, strategic management, corporate social responsibility, forestry, ecological economics, environmental economics, energy, geography, and public policy.  The literature reviewed comprises approximately 40 journals.  The journals in which most articles in the review were published include Business Strategy and the Environment (37 articles), the Journal of Cleaner Production (36 articles), and the Journal of Business Ethics (19 articles).     16  Table 2: Journals in which the reviewed articles were published   In terms of methodologies, empirical papers represent 92% of the sample, while theoretical papers represent the remaining 8%.  Among the empirical papers reviewed, 79% employ predominantly quantitative methods, 18% employ predominantly qualitative methods, and 3% employ mixed methods.  Regarding the types of environmental initiatives examined, 22% of the articles reviewed concentrate on regulatory environmental initiatives, 71% concentrate on voluntary environmental initiatives, and the remaining 7% consider regulatory and voluntary environmental initiatives equally.   As our primary research objective seeks to understand relationships between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness, a substantial proportion (approximately 75%) of the articles reviewed consider the business-level of analysis; however, some studies consider an individual (18%), institutional (1%), industry (4%), or country (2%) level of analysis.  Regarding the geographic context of articles JOURNALNUMBER OF ARTICLES PROPORTION OF SAMPLEBusiness Strategy and the Environment 37 19.4%Journal of Cleaner Production 36 18.8%Journal of Business Ethics 19 9.9%Ecological Economics 15 7.9%Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management 13 6.8%Environmental & Resource Economics 10 5.2%Forest Policy and Economics 7 3.7%Energy Policy 7 3.7%Journal of Environmental Management 6 3.1%Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 5 2.6%Other Journals 36 18.8%17  included in this review, most (62%) studies consider a single country context.  Among these studies, the most common countries considered include the United States (32%), Germany (11%), and Spain (9%).  Studies focusing on the United States were most common among management journals, while studies focusing on European countries were most common among environmental sustainability journals.  Some studies transcended a single country, with 21% considering an international context in which multiple countries from different continents are compared and 10% considering a regional context in which multiple countries from the same continent are compared.  Other studies focused on a more specific region, with 5% considering a state or provincial context, and 3% considering a city context.  The international context was particularly common among articles published in management and policy journals, while the regional context was particularly common among articles published in interdisciplinary and environmental sustainability journals.   Approximately half (52%) of the empirical papers reviewed were cross sectional (e.g., the data collected and analyzed is based on a single point in time).  Among papers employing longitudinal analyses, most (65%) consider a time period of greater than five years.  With respect to theories, the most common theoretical lenses applied include the Resource-Based View (RBV), Institutional Theory, Stakeholder Theory, the Natural Resource-Based View (NRBV), and Legitimacy Theory.  That said, most of the articles reviewed refer to broad research streams, rather than specific theories.    2.5 Findings     In this section, data obtained from the literature review is synthesized to discuss key dimensions, complexities, and implications related to the environmental initiatives-business 18  competitiveness link.  To begin, the different dimensions of environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness identified in the review are described.  Next, the nature of relationships between different dimensions of environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness, as well as factors influencing these relationships, are examined.  We conclude this section with a discussion of methodological implications.    2.5.1 Multiple ways to conceptualize environmental sustainability initiatives Environmental sustainability is a broad construct with multiple meanings.  As a result, articles differ in terms of how they conceptualize environmental sustainability initiatives, leading to inconsistent measures and multiple levels of analysis.  While many articles discuss both regulatory and voluntary environmental sustainability initiatives, few differentiate between these dimensions conceptually or empirically; Li and Toppinen (2011) and López-Gamero et al. (2010) are two notable exceptions.    2.5.1.1 Regulatory environmental initiatives Regulatory environmental initiatives are generally characterized by a command-and-control approach, such as government mandated laws and policies (Holling and Meffe, 1996).  While regulatory environmental initiatives have helped to significantly reduce negative environmental impacts, they have also been criticized for being inflexible and overly restrictive, comprising high monitoring and enforcement costs, and contributing to negative relations between businesses and regulatory agencies (Potoski and Prakash, 2005a).  Conceptualizations related to regulatory environmental initiatives identified in this review include: (i) general regulation; (ii) introduction of new regulation; (iii) threat of new 19  regulation; (iv) comparative regulation; (v) deregulation; (vi) regulatory stringency; (vii) regulatory flexibility; (viii) regulatory proactivity; (ix) regulatory violations or penalties; and (x) mandatory disclosure.  General regulation, the introduction of new regulation, and the threat of new regulation are the most common operationalizations of regulatory environmental initiatives observed in the data.    2.5.1.2 Voluntary environmental initiatives In comparison, voluntary environmental initiatives are generally characterized by participatory approaches, such as voluntary environmental programs and certifications (Cashore et al., 2015; DeBoer et al., 2017).  Voluntary environmental initiatives tend to be internally motivated (Anton et al., 2004) and may help businesses identify and resolve regulatory conflicts before they become violations (Potoski and Prakash, 2005b), as well as contribute to positive relations between businesses, regulatory agencies, and other stakeholders (Potoski and Prakash, 2005a).  Based on our review, recent conceptualizations related to voluntary environmental initiatives include: (i) environmental performance (e.g., subjective measures); (ii) environmental management systems; (iii) environmental certifications and eco-labels; (iv) environmental emissions; (v) environmental innovation (including product and process innovation); (vi) voluntary disclosure; (vii) environmental partnerships and collaborations; (viii) management commitment; (ix) sustainable supply chain management; and (x) sustainable human resource management.  Common operationalizations of voluntary environmental initiatives include environmental management systems, environmental certifications, and environmental emissions.    20  2.5.2 Multiple ways to conceptualize business competitiveness During the process of our systematic literature review, diverse operationalizations and dimensions of business competitiveness were identified.  Operationalizations fell into one of the following three categories: a single measure (e.g., return on assets); multiple comparative measures (e.g., a comparison of return on assets, return on equity, and net income); or an aggregate measure (e.g., aggregate performance evaluations by managers).  Iterative rounds of pattern coding resulted in five emergent dimensions: (i) financial performance; (ii) market performance; (iii) reputational performance; (iv) operational performance; and (v) innovation performance.  Although these dimensions were identified inductively, Vilanova et al. (2009) identify five generally analogous competitiveness dimensions: performance (comparable to the financial performance dimension in this chapter); quality (somewhat comparable to the market performance dimension in this chapter); image/reputation (comparable to the reputational performance dimension in this chapter); productivity (comparable to the operational performance dimension in this chapter); and innovation (comparable to the innovation performance dimension in this chapter).  Examples of how the five dimensions were coded and categorized are illustrated in Table 3.    21  Table 3: Business competitiveness measures, classifications, and exemplary citations    2.5.3 The confounding nature of the link between regulatory environmental initiatives and business competitiveness  A descriptive summary of articles considering relationships between regulatory environmental initiatives and business competitiveness is provided in Table 4.  Because many of the articles in this sample consider multiple relationships, the number of relationships identified in Table 4 exceeds the number of articles reviewed.  For example, Lanoie and colleagues (2011) find evidence of a positive relationship between regulatory stringency and innovation performance, but a negative relationship between regulatory stringency and operational performance; consequently, two relationships corresponding to a single article are identified in Table 4.  Most studies that consider regulatory environmental MEASURES CLASSIFICATIONS EXEMPLARY CITATIONSProfit, Price Premiums,        Return on Assets (ROA)Financial PerformanceChen et al., 2010;                 Menguc et al., 2010;                 Ziegler, 2012Market Share, Market Entry, Market DemandMarket PerformanceAguilar and Cai, 2010; Rexhäuser and Rammer, 2014; Rivera and Oh, 2013Legitimacy, Ratings & Rankings, Partnerships & CollaborationsReputational PerformanceCordeiro and Tewari, 2015; Cormier and Magnan, 2015; Olsen et al., 2014 Cost Minimization, Asset Turnover, Labor ProductivityOperational PerformanceDe Jong et al., 2014;                Jacobs et al., 2016;                         Yu et al., 2016Patent Counts, Product Innovation, Process InnovationInnovation PerformanceFord et al., 2014;                       Noailly and Batrakova, 2010; Rogge and Hoffmann, 201022  initiatives apply objective measures of business competitiveness (e.g., profitability measures, such as return on equity), whereas only a select few apply subjective measures (e.g., perceptual measures, such as managerial evaluations).  Overall, the regulatory environmental-business competitiveness link can best be characterized as ambiguous. The data indicates confounding relationships between regulatory environmental initiatives and business competitiveness.  Studies that consider businesses’ financial performance offer varied and murky results: two positive relationships; four negative relationships; three insignificant relationships; and ten mixed relationships.  Such contradictory findings indicate that the relationship between regulatory environmental initiatives and businesses’ financial performance may be non-linear or indirect, and contextual factors presumably play a role.  Similarly, studies considering businesses’ market performance indicate entirely mixed results.  Only three articles that consider businesses’ reputational performance were identified.  Here, yet again, contradictory results were found.  Studies examining businesses’ operational performance paint a similar picture: one negative relationship; one insignificant relationship; and three mixed relationships.  Finally, studies exploring the link between regulatory environmental initiatives and businesses’ innovation performance offer complicated findings: seven positive relationships; six insignificant relationships; and eight mixed relationships.  Again, it is apparent that contextual contingencies play a role.    23  Table 4: Relationships observed between regulatory environmental initiatives and different dimensions of business competitiveness  *Data represents the total number of relationships observed; some articles observed multiple relationships.  For example, Lanoie et al. (2011) find regulatory stringency is positively related to innovation performance (indicated in the POSITIVE-INNOVATION field) but negatively related to operational performance (indicated in the NEGATIVE-OPERATIONAL field).  2.5.4 The confounding nature of the link between voluntary environmental initiatives and business competitiveness Table 5 illustrates the relationships between voluntary environmental initiatives and business competitiveness observed in the sample data.  Comparable to the findings related to regulatory environmental initiatives, the voluntary environmental initiative-business competitiveness link is also equivocal.  Some studies observed inverted U-shaped relationships (Fujii et al., 2013; Misani and Pogutz, 2015), while others observed bi-directional relationships (Heras-Saizarbitoria et al., 2011; López-Gamero et al., 2010).  Subjective measures were notably more common among studies considering voluntary environmental initiatives.  Overall, the nature of the relationship between voluntary environmental initiatives and business competitiveness is complicated and, oftentimes, contradictory. Studies that examine the relationship between voluntary environmental initiatives and businesses’ financial performance comprise a total forty-five positive relationships; nine 24  negative relationships; sixteen insignificant relationships; and eighty mixed relationships.  The prevalence of mixed relationships indicate contextual factors are particularly influential, and that the link itself may be non-linear or indirect.  Among studies examining businesses’ market performance, we again found contradictory results: nine positive relationships; three insignificant relationships; and eight mixed relationships.  Similarly, studies considering businesses’ reputational performance included: fourteen positive relationships; two negative relationships; six insignificant relationships; and sixteen mixed relationships.  Such mixed results suggest the voluntary environmental initiative-reputational performance link may be indirect.  Studies examining businesses’ operational performance again comprise mixed results: fourteen positive relationships; one insignificant relationship; and eleven mixed relationships.  Finally, studies that examine businesses’ innovation performance offer convoluted findings: seven positive relationships; one negative relationship; and five mixed relationships.  Once again, findings here underscore the influence of contextual factors.    Table 5: Relationships observed between voluntary environmental initiatives and different dimensions of business competitiveness  *Data represents the number of relationships observed; some articles observed multiple relationships.  For example, Delmas and Grant (2014) find eco-certifications are positively related to financial performance (indicated in the POSITIVE-FINANCIAL field), while eco-labels are negatively related to financial performance (indicated in the NEGATIVE-FINANCIAL field).  25  2.5.5 Factors influencing the link between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness  2.5.5.1 Mediating effects To further explore the confounding findings described above, we first consider mediating effects characterizing the relationship between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness.  Mediators identified in our sample include customer satisfaction, environmental strategy, innovation, intangible resources, leadership qualities, marketing qualities, organizational culture, production/logistics processes, reputation, and strategic flexibility.  Based on this synthesis, businesses’ intangible resources, which include “innovation, human resources, reputation, and organizational culture” (Surroca et al., 2010, p. 464), play a particularly important role in the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link.  Dynamics related to sustainable innovation, human resource management, and organizational culture are also presumably influential in explaining this link.  At a broad level, Surroca et al. (2010) find intangible resources mediate the relationship between businesses’ environmental sustainability initiatives and financial performance.  At an intermediate level, Tang et al. (2012) find businesses’ reputations mediate the relationship between environmental governance and economic performance.  Finally, at a narrow level, Norheim-Hansen (2015) suggests the relationship between businesses’ environmental reputation and partner attractiveness (e.g., a measure of overall reputation) is mediated by perceived trustworthiness.  Focusing only on mediation effects related to environmental reputation, we graphically synthesize these empirical findings to illustrate the complex dynamics influencing the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link (see Figure 2); the dashed line in Figure 2 represents a relationship unexamined in the sample data.  26  Consequently, consideration of multiple and complex effects may be critical in better understanding the nature of the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness relationship.     Figure 2: Mediation effects in the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link  2.5.5.2 Moderating effects Next, moderators that potentially influence the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness are considered.  Analysis of the literature reviewed suggests factors moderating the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link include absorptive capacity, company culture, competitive intensity, financial risk, business size, industry, innovation intensity, innovation type, investment spending, location, munificence, and stakeholder pressure.  In a meta-analysis examining relationships between environmental initiatives and financial performance, Horváthová (2010) suggests contradictory findings surrounding this relationship may be due to the fact 27  that early empirical studies did not account for essential moderating factors, such as business size, industry, and location.  While many of the studies in our sample did account for such factors, results remain contradictory.  For example, studies in our sample that consider large corporations (i.e., S&P 500 businesses) frequently control for business size; these studies generally suggest business size is positively related to competitiveness outcomes because larger businesses have more resources with which to implement environmental sustainability initiatives (Golicic and Smith, 2013).  In comparison, studies in the sample that examine small- and medium-sized businesses appear to find support for the direct relationship between environmental performance and business competitiveness.  Torugsa et al. (2012), for instance, suggest small- and medium-sized businesses pursuing environmental sustainability initiatives may be more likely to achieve competitiveness outcomes due to increased alertness, organizational efficiency, and flexibility.  Our review indicates the need for a more nuanced understanding of how moderating effects, particularly some of the more prevalent moderating effects such as business size, industry, and location, influence the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link.    2.5.5.3 Causal ambiguity  Scholars have proposed different causal sequences pertaining to the direction of the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness relationship.  For example, different causal sequences postulate that: (i) environmental sustainability initiatives will lead to superior business competitiveness (i.e., social impact hypothesis or instrumental stakeholder theory); (ii) superior business competitiveness will enable businesses’ environmental sustainability initiatives (i.e., available funds hypothesis or slack resources theory); or (iii) 28  businesses’ environmental sustainability initiatives and competitiveness reinforce one another simultaneously (i.e., virtuous circle, bi-directional causality hypothesis, or positive synergy theory).  While many studies in the sample acknowledge the possibility of disparate causal sequences, few studies investigate these possibilities empirically.  Further, among studies testing different causal sequences, findings are mixed.  For example, Heras-Saizarbitoria et al. (2011) indicate superior financial performance corresponds to business participation in a voluntary environmental initiative, but business participation in a voluntary environmental initiative does not correspond to superior financial performance, thus supporting slack resources theory.  In comparison, Carrión-Flores and Innes (2010) indicate businesses’ environmental innovation motivates regulatory stringency, while regulatory stringency concurrently stimulates businesses’ environmental innovation, thus supporting positive synergy theory.  Few of the studies in our sample test alternative causal sequences empirically.  Rather, studies often lag dependent variables, often without providing theoretical justification, thus compromising causal inferences.  Overall, the link between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness is causally ambiguous, casting many uncertainties over its manifestation in the real world.    2.6 Lessons learned for the circular bioeconomy This review suggests the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness is complex, nuanced, and ambiguous.  As such, it is dependent on a plethora of measurement and methodological choices, business-level resources and capabilities, and various contextual factors.  With these considerations in mind, it is important that the competitiveness emphasis in the bioeconomy sphere be carefully 29  articulated so that it neither portrays a simplistic picture of a complex landscape, nor does it overpromise potential benefits of bioeconomy initiatives to private businesses, policymakers, and/or academics.  In the following sections, we propose four key considerations that may help to refine the competitiveness logic within a circular bioeconomy context, as well as underlying research to support these observations.    2.6.1 Construct conceptualizations There is a need to discern between the various ways in which businesses can engage with bioeconomy initiatives (Giurca, 2019). A homogenous, one-size-fits-all conceptualization of circular bioeconomy engagement is likely to lead to an obfuscated vision of its effect on business competitiveness.  Going back to our review of the literature, we observe that environmental sustainability initiatives can be operationalized in ways as diverse as environmental strategies (e.g., symbolic versus substantive strategies, reactive versus proactive strategies), environmental performance (e.g., amount of emissions reported, changes in the amount of emissions reported), perceived environmental performance (e.g., managerial perceptions of businesses’ environmental performance), environmental ratings and rankings (e.g., KLD environmental strengths and concerns, Newsweek’s Green Rankings), environmental certifications (e.g., whether businesses are certified, the number of certifications businesses have obtained, the number of years businesses have been certified), and environmental reporting (e.g., businesses’ mandatory or voluntary environmental reporting).  Such a fine dissection of circular bioeconomy engagement as a construct has not yet happened and, therefore, we suspect there would be much confusion among private 30  business decision-makers and academics as to what it would actually mean to engage in bioeconomy initiatives. Similarly, clarification is needed regarding the competitiveness construct itself.  As this review illustrates, competitiveness can be conceptualized as financial performance (e.g., financial measures, price premiums), market performance (e.g., market share, market entry), reputational performance (e.g., ratings and rankings, partnerships and collaborations), operational performance (e.g., cost savings, labor productivity), or innovation performance (e.g., patent counts, product and process innovation).  Again, we do not see extant bioeconomy literature discerning among these various performance measures, even though broad pathways have been proposed.  For example, it is envisioned that the circular bioeconomy will lead to product and process innovation (Hansen, 2016; Korhonen et al., 2019; Van Lancker et al., 2016).  Both incremental and, more importantly, radical innovation will be essential (Bosman and Rotmans, 2016; Van Lancker et al., 2016); yet, it is not clear who will lead innovation and how benefits will be shared among businesses.  What is more, there is little clarity regarding whether the bioeconomy will promote sectoral competitiveness or business-level competitiveness.  If it is the former, it is not clear how and which individual businesses will gain from increased sectoral competitiveness.  If it is the latter, it is not clear which business performance measures are likely to improve.  For example, Hetemäki et al. (2017) suggest public procurement policies function as a pull mechanism to expand markets for bio-based products, which seem to emphasize sectoral competitiveness but, at the same time, Toppinen et al. (2017a) caution that the bioeconomy will likely increase costs and constraints of doing business, thereby intensifying competition.  In sum, it remains ambiguous whether the circular bioeconomy will foster system-wide prosperity among 31  participating businesses or will create a complex set of winners and losers.  In either case, construct clarity and specifications are critical for future development of the competitiveness logic in the circular bioeconomy.    2.6.2 Methodological sophistication The future of bioeconomy research requires methodological sophistication.  For example, if financial performance measures are assumed to improve because of price premiums and consumers’ higher willingness-to-pay (WTP) for environmentally sustainable products and services, WTP analyses must be carried out in a sophisticated manner.  In a meta-analysis, Cai and Aguilar (2013) consider how differences in research methods, product attributes, and consumer attributes correspond to different WTP premiums.  Comparing differences in WTP estimates across different research methods, they find indirect contact with consumers (e.g., mail surveys) yield higher WTP estimates than direct contact with customers (e.g., face-to-face surveys).  Similarly, studies using conjoint analysis (CA) tend to yield higher WTP estimates than studies using contingent valuation methods (CVM).  Given these differences, “[a] combination of methods (e.g.  CVM, CA, direct, indirect contact) may be necessary to be applied to specific products or sectors before conclusive findings about WTP are made” (ibid, p.  28).  Thus, we suggest bioeconomy scholars prioritize research methods which mimic participants’ decision-making processes and behaviors as closely as possible, as well as minimize methodological biases.  To achieve this, scholars must be mindful of the effects associated with different research methods, and, when possible, employ multiple methods.    32  2.6.3 Ubiquity of adoption Our literature review suggests businesses differ significantly in their level of engagement with environmental sustainability; businesses’ environmental sustainability strategies are characterized as reactive or proactive (Räty et al., 2016), symbolic or substantial (Schons and Steinmeier, 2016), etc.  While some businesses have emerged as leaders by adopting proactive environmental practices, many more have persisted as laggards by continuing business-as-usual.  As such, much of the research on the bioeconomy has focused on understanding sustainability behaviors and outcomes of ‘the best,’ while ignoring ‘the rest.’ Unless we better understand the adoption of environmental initiatives across a broad range of actors, large-scale changes will be difficult to envisage. The heterogeneity of business engagement is already visible in the bioeconomy context.  Kleinschmit et al. (2014) observe various approaches to the bioeconomy represent “shades of green” (p.  402), indicating individual businesses show heterogeneity in terms of their commitment to a bioeconomy.  To motivate engagement among all businesses will require collaborations across businesses, industries, industry associations, governments, NGOs, and other stakeholder groups (Korhonen et al., 2017; Meyer, 2017), as well as changes in leadership and business culture (Hansen, 2016).  Cooperative partnerships across industries and with government will be particularly important, as conflicts between competing uses of different forms of biomass, such as food, materials, energy, etc., emerge (Hagemann et al., 2016).  Institutionalizing the circular bioeconomy will, therefore, require broader cooperation among businesses and other actors.  In this sense, we argue bioeconomy discourse should equally emphasize the importance of cooperation in achieving the competitiveness it seeks to profess.  The interplay of cooperation and competitiveness is a 33  complex topic in environmental sustainability (El-Chichakli et al., 2016), but it is particularly important to understand within a bioeconomy context, where the very success of the initiative hinges upon private businesses’ abilities to come together to cooperate with each other.  Cooperation within an overarching competitiveness logic can be conceptually and practically challenging and, hence, entails clear and careful articulation so that future work in the field fosters adoption of circular bioeconomy initiatives among many businesses, not just select pioneers.  2.6.4 Clarity about means and ends Promoting the business case for sustainability essentially considers environmental sustainability initiatives a means to a business competitiveness end, which insinuates, either implicitly or explicitly, environmental sustainability initiatives are only worthwhile if they are positively related to business competitiveness.  However, businesses might find alternative investments to competitiveness more feasible, in which case, environmental sustainability initiatives will lose the traction that could have been gained from private sector engagement.  We already see evidence of such obfuscated motivations in the circular bioeconomy domain, where production concerns seem to transcend environmental concerns.  For example, Kröger and Raitio, in their analysis of Finland’s forest policy, observe that “the dominant pathway aims to safeguard increased timber production… [whereas] ecological sustainability challenges are given relatively little attention” (2017, p. 6, 10).  Other scholars have discussed challenges surrounding the commercialization of the bioeconomy: (i) businesses operating in business-to-business (B2B) markets will face considerable switching costs (Van Lancker et al., 2016) and (ii) businesses selling to end-users will struggle if 34  consumers are not willing to pay a premium for bio-based products or services (Hagemann et al., 2016).  Further, the bioeconomy is linked to increased costs and constraints of doing business, as well as intensified competition (Toppinen et al., 2017a).  All of these observations suggest that, while a fundamental motivation of the circular bioeconomy is portrayed as providing environmental and ecological responsiveness, its adoption is filtered through a cost feasibility lens, which may ultimately undermine its development because businesses may find more cost effective and less ambiguous pathways to achieve business competitiveness than by undertaking bioeconomy initiatives.  Again, successfully advancing the circular bioeconomy, whether through research or practice, will depend on its stated end objectives.  Masked motivations might ultimately lead to gaps in developing the system-wide collaborations the circular bioeconomy must advance in order to flourish.   The means and ends dichotomy does not stop at the bioeconomy-competitiveness link.  More specifically, what we aspire to ultimately achieve through the circular bioeconomy begs for clarification.  Notably, bioeconomy initiatives may produce unintended, unforeseen, and perverse effects that may undermine its fundamental objectives (Cashore and Bernstein, 2018).  For instance, in the case of biofuels development, Clark et al. (2016) observe corn-based biofuel production in the United States led to higher carbon emissions than using fossil fuel; production also heightened food insecurity owing to higher food prices.  Assessing and fully incorporating such unintended, perverse outcomes in future policy decisions necessitates integration of bioeconomy discourse with knowledge generated in the natural science literature to provide a clearer understanding of means and ends.  In other words, if the circular bioeconomy is to contribute to sustainable development, the 35  means and ends by which it does so must be clearly understood by private sector businesses, governing bodies, and academics.   Finally, the focus on competitiveness itself may implicitly reinforce a belief system about the benefits of linking business competitiveness to the circular bioeconomy, rather than assessing the conditions through which positive, negative, and/or neutral effects might occur.  By relying on more traditional measures of business competitiveness, current discourse could undermine creative approaches for uncovering innovative solutions combining competitiveness and on-the-ground impacts.  Similarly, a focus on competitiveness could undermine potentially effective regulatory approaches, if they are found to weaken business competitiveness.  This, in turn, might have a role in limiting regulatory efforts to mandate a circular bioeconomy in favor of benign approaches that privilege targeted businesses, as opposed to reducing carbon emissions.  Ultimately, our basic contention is circular bioeconomy research must emphasize what its overall intended objectives are (e.g., the ends), how they will be achieved (e.g., the means), and how unintended outcomes will be assessed and overcome.    2.7 Conclusion  Environmental sustainability initiatives are often touted as a mechanism to enhance private sector business competitiveness.  This chapter endeavored to challenge the proposed link between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness.  By rooting this research in previous literature examining the links between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness, we draw key lessons by conducting a systematic literature review and subsequently suggest important considerations for advancing bioeconomy research.  Our 36  overall conclusion is the relationship between environmental sustainability initiatives and private sector business competitiveness is ambiguous; discourse on environmental sustainability initiatives begs for more nuanced, specific, and clear analyses regarding potential links with business competitiveness.  To clarify, we are not rejecting the idea of a potential link.  Rather, we offer a critique of the proposed link.  In fact, our hope is this research will refine how the proposed link is conceptualized and bring more discipline to an area of inquiry we consider fundamentally important.  Because the scope and relevance of the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link will inevitably depend on industry and country characteristics, we recommend further investigation and analyses, particularly in contexts relevant to the circular bioeconomy.    This chapter has limitations that follow-up studies must consider.  First, as is the case with most systematic literature reviews, it is unrealistic to exhaustively uncover all possible keywords and journals.  Future studies must incorporate any critical omissions.  Second, whether lessons learned from a piecemeal domain of the environmental initiatives-business competitiveness link can, or should, be applied to a system-wide transformative domain, such as the circular bioeconomy, could be debated.  It is certainly possible that the competitiveness link will manifest in very different ways when coordinated efforts are institutionalized.  Regardless of the nature of its manifestation, however, construct clarity, methodological sophistication, ubiquity of adoption by private businesses, and clarity about means and ends remain critical considerations.  Nonetheless, studies that could challenge our basic premise to apply lessons from this review to a bioeconomy context may shed much-needed light on how coordinated initiatives are fundamentally different from piecemeal approaches to sustainability, whether through regulation and/or voluntary initiatives, and may 37  open new areas of scholarly inquiry in the broader field of environmental sustainability.  Third, this search was limited to recently published peer reviewed articles, neglecting important emergent knowledge that resides in non-academic spheres, which may have restricted the depth and scope of our discussion revolving around the bioeconomy-competitiveness link.  Nevertheless, we believe the implications of these findings call for more nuanced research that seeks to enhance our understanding of the challenges and opportunities businesses face in addressing environmental sustainability initiatives.    38  Chapter 3: An investigation of diverse approaches to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry  3.1 Introduction  Environmental sustainability challenges are growing in scale and complexity (Rockström et al., 2009; Steffen et al., 2015).  Challenges include climate change, water pollution and availability, waste production and disposal, chemical use and toxic substance disposal, biodiversity loss, deforestation, and land degradation.  Many suggest businesses have a critical role to play in addressing these challenges (Whiteman et al., 2013), and adopting environmental sustainability initiatives to do so may offer businesses new and unprecedented opportunities.  For instance, Kevin Schaefer of the National Snow and Ice Data Centre recently stated, “Shifting to a low-carbon economy is the biggest business opportunity of the 21st century,” (as cited in Leahy, 2019).  Once considered a ‘nice to have’ for businesses, environmental sustainability initiatives have become a vital component of business strategy.  Correspondingly, businesses are increasingly adopting environmental sustainability initiatives and the study of sustainable business management has become increasingly prevalent.   Despite extensive research related to sustainable business management, the literature provides limited insight into why certain businesses adopt environmental sustainability initiatives while others do not, and why levels of engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives differ among them (Schrettle et al., 2014).  While these gaps have been highlighted by scholars in the general literature, the significance of these gaps is particularly important for the PPI, where environmental sustainability pressures are inherently unique and more 39  profound.  The objective of this chapter involves an investigation of the motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  More specifically, the research question I address in this chapter is: What are the diverse approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI?   This chapter is organized as follows.  First, I provide a conceptual background and highlight the theoretical lenses relevant to this chapter.  Second, I describe my methodology.  Third, I present my findings, in which I focus on businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives.  I subsequently propose a typology to characterize diverse approaches to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.  Finally, I discuss my findings and offer conclusions.    3.2 Conceptual background and theoretical underpinning   Over the past several decades, business sustainability scholars have rigorously investigated business approaches to environmental sustainability.  Despite abundant research, understanding why and how businesses differ in their approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives remains elusive (Dowell and Muthulingam, 2017), and is likely both industry- and country-specific (Orji, 2019; Panwar and Hansen, 2007).  Investigating diverse approaches to environmental sustainability, particularly in the context of the PPI, is important for several reasons.  First, a better understanding of how and why businesses approach environmental initiatives could provide new insights into the challenges and opportunities businesses face when considering different environmental initiatives, such as those associated with the circular bioeconomy.  Second, further characterization of how and why businesses approach environmental initiatives could improve researchers’ ability to predict 40  the adoption and implementation, or lack thereof, of different types of environmental initiatives among different types of businesses.  Third, a deeper understanding of how and why businesses approach environmental initiatives could help clarify the mechanisms that promote environmentally sustainable practices, thus allowing practitioners, researchers, and policy makers to better comprehend the efficacy of regulatory and voluntary environmental initiatives.  In the following sections, I discuss competing theoretical approaches relevant to understanding business approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives.    3.2.1 Resource-based view and natural-resource-based view  The resource-based view (RBV) focuses on the role of a business’s resources and capabilities in achieving sustained competitive advantage (Barney, 1991; Dierickx and Cool, 1989; Wernerfelt, 1984).  Applying this theoretical lens, resources represent the tangible and intangible assets each business possesses, while capabilities comprise the processes each business can derive from the resources it possesses (Winter, 2000).  To achieve sustained competitive advantage, a resource or capability must be rare, valuable, inimitable, and non-substitutable (Barney, 1991).  When a business’s resource is rare, the business may command a premium and avoid perfect competition, a situation in which businesses become price takers.  In the case of a valuable resource, the business may implement strategies to improve efficacy and efficiency.  When a resource is difficult to imitate, the potential for competitive advantage is increased.  Similarly, when a strategically equivalent resource is not available, the potential for sustained competitive advantage is increased.  While many business attributes may be considered rare, valuable, inimitable, and non-substitutional, “attributes only become resources when they exploit opportunities or neutralize threats” (Barney, 1991, 41  p. 106).  The RBV suggests firm-specific resources and capabilities, such as slack resources and management competencies, are critical to explaining differences in businesses’ approaches to environmental sustainability (Aragon-Correa and Sharma, 2003).  Hart (1995) suggests the RBV perspective has a notable omission.  While the RBV considers a variety of resources and capabilities to provide a more compelling logic in explaining sustained competitive advantage than prior attempts, it seems to ignore interaction between business and the natural environment.  According to Hart, “it is likely that strategy and competitive advantage in the coming years will be rooted in capabilities that facilitate environmentally sustainable economic activity – a natural-resource-based view of the firm,” (1995, p. 991).  As such, the natural-resource-based view (NRBV), an extension of the RBV, was developed.  To achieve competitive advantage, the NRBV highlights three strategic capabilities: pollution prevention, product stewardship, and sustainable development; each capability builds on different resources and provides a different source of competitive advantage (Hart and Dowell, 2011).  Pollution prevention involves preventing waste and emissions at the source, rather than managing waste and emissions at disposal (e.g., cleaner technology versus end-of-pipe applications), while also allowing for lower costs.  Product stewardship expands pollution prevention to consider the entire value chain and life cycle of the business’s products and processes; this capability creates potential for competitive advantage by establishing practices considered advantageous to the focal business (e.g., securing exclusive access to sustainable raw materials).  Finally, sustainable development involves the capability of addressing both environmental and social concerns.  Because the economic activities of businesses operating in developed countries inevitably influence environmental degradation and societal well-being in less developed countries, a sustainable 42  development strategy requires a business to recognize and address the environmental and social impacts it has in lesser developed markets, offering potential for competitive advantage through market entry and development.  NRBV scholars suggest environmental sustainability initiatives advance the development of complementary capabilities to achieve sustained competitive advantage (Schoenherr and Talluri, 2012).  For example, Christmann (2000) posits the early adoption of pollution prevention technologies contributes to the development of innovative, process-related capabilities; these capabilities have been found to provide a cost advantage relative to competitors in the manufacturing sector.    3.2.2 Institutional theory While the RBV and NRBV emphasize factors internal to a business, institutional theory emphasizes factors external to a business.  Institutional theory contends business practices and procedures must conform to the prevailing social norms of the institutions in which they are embedded (DiMaggio and Powell, 1983; Meyer and Rowan, 1997; Scott, 1995; Zucker, 1987).  Applying this theoretical lens, institutions comprise the “cultural-cognitive, normative, and regulative elements that, together with associated activities and resources, provide stability and meaning to social life,” (Scott, 2003, p. 879).  DiMaggio and Powell suggest businesses conform to institutional pressures through coercive, mimetic, and normative dimensions of isomorphism, “a constraining process that forces one unit in a population to resemble other units that face the same set of environmental conditions” (1983, p. 149).  Coercive isomorphism comprises a process through which institutional actors exert direct (e.g., government regulation) or indirect (e.g., societal expectation) pressure on a business to adopt specific practices or procedures.  Mimetic isomorphism involves a process 43  through which a business responds to uncertainty by emulating the practices or procedures adopted by businesses perceived as more legitimate or successful.  Finally, normative isomorphism encompasses a process through which a business adopts practices and procedures in response to pressure from professional and trade associations.  Through institutional isomorphism, businesses become increasingly homogeneous to enhance legitimacy and ensure survival.  Consequently, institutional theory suggests external influences, such as government regulation or competitors’ environmental initiatives, are critical to explaining differences in businesses’ approaches to environmental sustainability (Hoffman, 2001).   Institutional theory suggests regulative, normative, and cultural-cognitive pressures shape and/or drive business approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives.  For example, research applying this theoretical lens has predicted business engagement in environmental initiatives may be substantive or symbolic (Meyer and Rowan, 1977; Westphal and Zajac, 2001).  While substantive engagement in environmental initiatives generally requires significant change in core business practices and measurable improvements in environmental performance, symbolic engagement involves merely ceremonial actions to enhance legitimacy, while leaving core business practices and environmental performance unchanged (Berrone et al., 2009; Fiss and Zajac, 2006).   Scholars have linked institutional pressures to substantive and symbolic engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives in myriad ways.  For example, Walker and Fan (2012) differentiate between substantive and symbolic action by comparing the website content of businesses operating in heavily polluting industries; substantive action is measured as concrete actions businesses have taken to address environmental concerns, whereas 44  symbolic action is measured as the failure to describe concrete actions.  Scholars have also linked institutional pressures to substantive and symbolic engagement by comparing early and late adopters of environmental sustainability initiatives.  Examining business engagement in a voluntary environmental initiative, Delmas and Montes-Sancho (2010) find early adopters, who tend to be prone to higher levels of institutional pressure, engage substantively, whereas late adopters, who tend to be prone to lower levels of institutional pressure, engage symbolically.  While the authors find no significant difference in the reduction of GHG emissions when comparing participants and nonparticipants, the authors find a significant difference when comparing early adopters and nonparticipants.  Hence, these findings suggest early adopters substantively reduced GHG emissions, while late adopters and nonparticipants did not.   Table 6 provides a description of the theoretical perspectives considered in this chapter.    45  Table 6: Theoretical perspectives applied   3.3 Methodology   3.3.1 Research approach  This chapter investigates the motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives in the context of the US PPI.  Given limited theory addresses the heterogeneity of business approaches to environmental initiatives, particularly in the context of the PPI, an inductive, multiple case study method was applied (Eisenhardt, 1989; Yin, 2009).  This method is considered the most appropriate for the following reasons.  First, inductive research is essential to the development of categories, themes, and theory when extant research is underdeveloped or inconclusive (Creswell, 2013).  Second, case study research allows for the study of complex, interrelated phenomena in a real-life setting (Yin, 2009), such as motivations for and engagement in environmental initiatives, which cannot be Core Theoretical Elements Business        StrategiesBusiness        OutcomesInstitutional Theory Cultural-cognitive, normative, and regulative pressuresCoercive, normative, and mimetic isomorphism Legitimacy,      survival Resource-Based View Rare, valuable, inimitable, and           non-substitutional resourcesExploit resources, capabilities, and core competenciesCompetitive advantageNatural Resource-Based ViewInteraction between business and the natural environment Pollution prevention, product stewardship, and sustainable development Competitive advantage and environmental sustainability 46  easily separated from the institutional context in which they are embedded (Joseph et al., 2018).  Third, multiple cases are examined to allow comparisons to be drawn within and across cases, enable an investigation of what, why, and how questions, and develop robust conceptual and theoretical knowledge (Eisenhardt, 1991; Yin, 2009).    3.3.2 Sample selection  Cases were selected through purposeful and theoretical sampling to ensure information-rich cases, capture variation, and achieve an in-depth understanding of the research objective (Eisenhardt, 1989; Patton, 2002).  The EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) database was used to identify the sample population.  This database provided environmental data pertaining to 284 facilities with at least one North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code related to pulp and paper manufacturing (NAICS code 322).  Methodologically, focusing on a single industry and single country minimizes heterogeneity associated with industry sectors, economic conditions, and national policy.  First, parent companies and subsidiaries were identified; subsidiaries were removed to avoid double counting.  For example, International Paper (parent company) operates six pulp mills, four paper mills, and sixteen containerboard mills (subsidiaries); only the parent company was included in the sample population.  Second, the home country of each company was identified; companies based outside of the US were removed.  For example, although Domtar operates numerous mills in the US, because the company is based in Canada, Domtar was removed from the sample population.  Third, the primary market of each company was identified; companies whose primary market was not associated with pulp and paper manufacturing were removed.  For instance, while 3M operates in NAICS code 322, because 47  the company’s primary market is in commercial printing rather than in pulp and paper manufacturing, 3M was removed from the sample population.  This selection process resulted in a study population composed of 77 pulp and paper businesses.  A subsequent approach was developed to identify and invite regulatory officials, industry association representatives, and representatives from relevant non-governmental organizations to participate in the study, verify case data, and ensure triangulation.   Case companies exhibiting variation in geographic region, product offerings, and environmental initiatives were prioritized to ensure sample diversity.  To ensure credibility, cases were sampled until data saturation was achieved (Glaser and Strauss, 1967); data saturation generally involves sampling until the collection of new data no longer leads to novel theoretical insights (Charmaz, 2006).  The sample consisted of fifteen cases, including four case companies located in the western US, four case companies located in the central US, and seven case companies located in the eastern US.  Companies range in size from a single mill operation employing approximately 100 employees to a multiple mill operation employing more than 2,000 employees.  All case companies have been given pseudonyms to maintain confidentiality (see Table 7).    48  Table 7: Case company demographics   3.3.3 Data collection    To ensure data validity and reliability, this investigation was based on multiple data sources.  Primary data were collected through semi-structured interviews with environmental managers and/or executives responsible for environmental management in each case company (primary participants), which provided in-depth insights into environmental decision-making processes (Dahlmann and Grosvold, 2017; Toppinen et al., 2015).  Subsequent semi-structured interviews with industry experts (secondary participants) were conducted to triangulate findings.  Secondary data were collected from company websites, news articles, industry association websites, regulatory and voluntary environmental databases, and third-party certification bodies.   49   3.3.3.1 Primary data sources    Semi-structured interviews with environmental managers and/or executives responsible for environmental management in each company provided the foundation for primary data collection.  Semi-structured interviews were chosen to provide rich, relevant, and comparable qualitative data (Kvale, 1996).  An interview protocol was developed, pretested, and revised with the assistance of three environmental managers from the wood products industry.   Next, a total of twenty interviews with respondents representing the fifteen case companies were conducted between April and September 2018; in select cases, multiple managers and/or executives were interviewed.  The interview protocol (Appendix 3) began with broad queries related to environmental management in the PPI; subsequent questions explored the environmental initiatives of each case company as well as the perceived environmental opportunities and impediments of each respondent.  Probing questions were used to clarify responses and gain deeper insights into issues raised by each respondent.  Data collected from semi-structured interviews enabled a deeper understanding of each case company’s motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives.   Each interview lasted between 30 and 90 minutes and was conducted either face-to-face (13 cases) or via Skype (2 cases).  All interviews were conducted in English, recorded and transcribed.  Each interview was assigned a random code to ensure confidentiality.  Field notes were taken to better describe what took place, including both observation and analysis (Eisenhardt, 1989).  In some instances, respondents were contacted by phone or email to clarify unclear or missing data.   50  Finally, two semi-structured interviews with industry experts were conducted to triangulate findings.  Combining data from primary and secondary semi-structured interviews resulted in more than 500 pages of textual data.  All respondents were assured of full confidentiality and anonymity.  Sensitive information, including respondent names, company names, company locations, and company product offerings have been removed to preserve the anonymity of each case.    3.3.3.2 Secondary data sources   The research reported in this chapter comprises an iterative review and analysis of data collected from multiple sources.  First, industry reports were reviewed to provide a broad picture of environmental sustainability issues and initiatives relevant to the PPI.  Second, data from company websites and news articles were collected and analyzed to provide a framework for each interview.  Finally, data from third-party certification bodies were collected to validate interview responses and supplement insights gained from interviews.  Triangulation of multiple data sources was undertaken to enhance the accuracy and credibility of the research (Patton, 2002); extensive review and analysis of secondary data sources resulted in more than 750 pages of textual data.  Industry reports   Industry reports reviewed included the 19th Annual Global Forest, Paper & Packaging Industry Survey (PwC, 2017) and the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry’s (TAPPI’s) The PPI Top 100 (Rushton and Rodden, 2017).  These reports allowed for the identification of environmental issues and initiatives currently relevant to the PPI, as 51  well as provided comparative data on domestic and foreign competitors.  Data collected from industry reports contributed to the development of the interview protocol (Appendix 3).    News articles   Google News US Edition was used to identify news articles relevant to each case company.  The search parameters included the name of each company (enclosed in quotation marks to narrow search results) paired with keywords related to environmental initiatives (i.e., environment, water, energy, waste, pollution, sustainability).  In most cases, news articles were written by third parties (e.g., local news outlets).  News articles provided material for probing questions during semi-structured interviews, as well as provided insight into how external stakeholders perceive the environmental practices and impacts of each case company.    Company websites   Data collected from company websites included self-descriptions, annual reports, environmental reports, environmental certifications, environmental awards and accolades, and press announcements.  Because websites are frequently updated, data pertaining to all websites were collected the same week and coded at a later date (Dou and Krishnamurthy, 2007).  The relevance and availability of data from company websites varied on a case-by-case basis.  In some instances, companies documented specific and measurable environmental objectives, as well as progress made towards those objectives; such data were coded as substantive engagement (Walker and Fan, 2012).  In other instances, companies provided only vague statements related to their environmental policies, with little or no evidence of specific practices or strategies; such data were coded as symbolic engagement.  52  This data proved useful for better understanding each company’s approach to environmental sustainability initiatives.    Environmental databases  Data from the EPA’s TRI program and Risk-Screening Environmental Indicators (RSEI) model were collected and analyzed.  The TRI program, a federally mandated program, provides data related to the toxic chemical releases reported by each case company.  The RSEI database combines TRI data with data pertaining to each chemical’s relative toxicity, chemical transport through the environment, and potential human exposure (EPA, 2019) to provide a comprehensive measure of companies’ environmental performance (Toffel and Marshall, 2004).  The Pollution Prevention (P2) database comprises companies’ voluntary pollution reduction strategies; this program emphasizes minimizing waste produced at the source, rather than treating waste downstream (Cagno et al., 2005).  Each database provided objective measures of companies’ environmental performance; data (including charts, tables, and figures) from 2008 to 2018 were collected, coded, and analyzed to allow for cross-case comparisons of case companies’ environmental engagement.    Environmental certifications   Third-party environmental certifications relevant to the case companies studied include ISO 14001, Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes (PEFC).  Data pertaining to each case company’s environmental certification(s) were collected from case company websites and verified by certification program websites.  The first issue date of 53  each environmental certification was coded, as early adoption tends to signify substantive engagement and late adoption tends to signify symbolic engagement (Delmas and Montes‐Sancho, 2010).  Consequently, this data allowed for cross-case comparison of case companies’ environmental engagement.     3.3.4 Data analysis Understanding complex phenomena requires frequent overlap between data collection, coding, and data analysis (Charmaz, 2014).  As no a priori coding scheme was available, a thematic network approach was adopted (Attride-Stirling, 2001); the thematic network approach involved the development of (i) basic themes, (ii) organizing themes, and (iii) global themes.  Data analysis began with line-by-line coding of interview transcripts, field notes, news articles, company websites, and certification program websites using qualitative data software NVivo 12.  The initial coding was based on themes included in the interview protocol.  Next, focused coding was used to sort, analyze, and synthesize initial coding to organize data based on conceptual or thematic similarity (Glaser, 1978).  Coded secondary data, interview transcripts, and field notes were integrated to develop case profiles (Yin, 2009) and triangulate findings (Eisenhardt, 1989).  Following, cross-case analyses were conducted to explore similarities and differences in constructs and themes across cases (Miles and Huberman, 1994); developing both within-case analyses and cross-case analyses improves data validity (Yin, 2009).  During this stage, emergent constructs and themes were examined, which allowed for a better understanding of relationships between constructs.  These relationships were refined through replication logic, where each concept’s pattern, purpose, and power were scrutinized (Charmaz, 2014; Yin, 2009).  Case pairings and tables 54  were developed using Microsoft Excel to capture clusters of potential constructs and themes simultaneously (Miles and Huberman, 1994).  Extensive secondary data related to companies’ environmental performance (e.g., air, water, energy, waste, chemicals) and environmental initiatives (e.g., environmental certifications, pollution prevention activities, awards and accolades) were considered.  This analytic strategy allowed for the recognition of relationships between various constructs and themes in order to better understand businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental initiatives in the US PPI.  Figure 3 illustrates the inductive, multiple case study procedure I followed.    55   Figure 3: Multiple case study procedure  3.4 Findings  One objective of this chapter involves gaining a deeper understanding of the motivations for environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  Consistent with Bansal and Roth (2000), the data suggests three broad motivations for environmental Research questionsResearch methodologyCase study selection and protocolPilot studies Context Context ContextCase 1:                                                      Data CollectionCase 2:                                                                                               Data CollectionCase N:                                            Data CollectionCase 1:                                         Coding and analysisCase 2:                                         Coding and analysisCase N:                                         Coding and analysisCase 1:                                          Initial theorizing Case 2:                                          Initial theorizing Case N:                                         Initial theorizing Cross-case comparisonEmergent themesTheoretical implicationsIndividual and cross-case conclusions Data collection                                                and analysisTheoretical framework                                                                  and design  Interpretation                                                                of cases 56  initiatives: competitiveness, legitimation, and ecological responsibility; consistent with Chapter 2, competitiveness comprises financial, market, reputational, operational, and technological dimensions.  Table 8 describes respondents’ motivations for environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.    Table 8: Motivations for environmental sustainability initiatives   Motivation Potential Benefits Respondent's PerspectivesFinancialPrice Premiums,            Increased Profits Respondents generally perceive environmental initiatives do not contribute to financial competitivenessMarketDifferentiation, Increased Market ShareRespondents generally perceive environmental initiatives do contribute to market competitivenessReputationalImproved Image, Customer LoyaltyRespondents generally perceive environmental initiatives might contribute      to reputational competitivenessOperationalLower Costs, Process ImprovementsRespondents generally perceive environmental initiatives might contribute      to operational competitiveness TechnologicalProduct, Process, and Business Model InnovationRespondents generally perceive environmental initiatives do contribute         to technological competitiveness LegitimacyInstitutional License to Operate, Survival Respondents generally perceive environmental initiatives might       contribute to institutional legitimacy Ecological ResponsibilityEthicalEcological ResponsibilityIn very select cases, respondents perceive environmental initiatives do contribute to ecological responsibilityCompetitiveness57  Based on an analysis of interview transcripts, I describe opportunities and challenges related to respondents’ motivations for environmental initiatives, as well as differentiate between internal and external sources of motivation.  In seven cases, respondents indicated predominantly internal sources of motivation, including management commitment and financial resources.  In eight cases, respondents indicated predominantly external sources of motivation, such as environmental regulation and market pressure.   Another objective of this chapter involves gaining a better understanding of businesses’ engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  Based on data gathered from interviews with primary and secondary participants, as well as data collected from secondary sources, I differentiate between substantive and symbolic engagement in environmental initiatives.  In doing so, data concerning the environmental performance, website content, environmental certifications, and environmental awards of each case company were considered.   To evaluate the environmental performance of each company, data from the EPA’s RSEI model were collected and analyzed.  Considering the most recent ten-year period available (2008-2017), six companies’ environmental performance improved (substantive engagement), four companies’ environmental performance worsened (symbolic engagement), and two companies’ environmental performance remained stable; RSEI scores were not available for three companies.  Next, data from each company’s website were collected, coded, and analyzed.  Considering data relating to the environmental initiatives of each company, seven websites presented concrete environmental action (substantive engagement), while eight websites provided only broad environmental inferences (symbolic engagement).  Following, data relevant to third-party environmental certifications and 58  initiatives were collected and analyzed.  Considering the number of environmental certifications and the first issue date of each certification, seven companies achieved at least three certifications and/or were early adopters (substantive engagement), while eight companies achieved fewer than three certifications and/or were late adopters (symbolic engagement); early adopters adopted at least one environmental certification prior to 2009.  Finally, data concerning environmental awards were collected and analyzed from industry reports and company websites; four companies received an award from the EPA and/or a nongovernmental organization in the most recent ten-year period (substantive engagement).  Table 9 summarizes case companies’ engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives.    Table 9: Engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives    ISO       14001FSC SFI/  PEFCOther VEIsAlder improved concrete early late early xAspen unchanged concrete late late xBirch worsened concrete late lateCedar improved abstract late lateChesnut worsened abstract early lateCypress improved abstract late late x xEucalyptus worsened abstractHemlock improved abstract late early xLarch N/A abstract lateMaple worsened concrete earlyOak improved concrete early early x xRedwood improved concrete early early x xSequoia unchanged concrete late earlySpruce N/A abstract late lateWalnut N/A abstractEnvironmental Certifications Company Pseudonym Website ContentEnvironmental PerformanceEnvir. Awards59  3.4.1 Competitiveness  Extending the findings presented in Chapter 2, I conceptualize five dimensions of competitiveness: financial, market, reputational, operational, and technological.  In the following sections, I discuss whether respondents perceive environmental initiatives contribute to each dimension of business competitiveness, as well as differentiate between (i) internal and external sources of motivation and (ii) substantive and symbolic environmental action.    3.4.1.1 Financial competitiveness   Financial competitiveness was often discussed in terms of profitability and price premiums.  When asked whether environmental sustainability initiatives contribute to financial performance, respondents overwhelmingly indicated environmental initiatives tend to hinder financial competitiveness, rather than help, regardless of whether decision-making processes related to environmental initiatives were based on internal or external motivations.  For example, a respondent who drew heavily from internal sources of motivation stated the following regarding environmental initiatives and profitability,  “Reducing our dependency on natural gas and electricity is something we should be doing to make ourselves more profitable. There's a benefit associated with that. The other things that I was talking about, water quality, etc., those are not going to bring anything to the bottom line. They're going to detract from the bottom line. We all believe in clean water. We all believe in clean air. We all believe in clean food. We all want those things for ourselves and we expect them from the companies we work for. And, you'll find that a lot of forest products companies, like I said, have been doing that for a long time and will continue to do so, but these are going to do nothing for profitability or improving the economic position of the company.” (Eucalyptus)   60    Similarly, regardless of whether data drawn from interviews and secondary sources indicated a case company engaged symbolically or substantively, respondents discussed more challenges than opportunities when connecting environmental sustainability initiatives and financial competitiveness.  A respondent from a company demonstrating substantive engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives suggested the following,  “Environmental opportunities?  Well, that would generally mean that somebody is trying to go beyond compliance.  In other words, present their products as being more environmentally friendly, so-called green products, toting their processes as being cleaner than someone else's. There are opportunities for that, but it appears that everybody wants greener products, but nobody wants to pay for it. That's the problem we have is that any of these products, the margins, it's very competitive and you're competing against other mills that are in other countries as well, and don't have the same regulations as we do and so it's difficult to do things that go way beyond compliance, to provide a greener product, unless you can get paid for it, but nobody seems to be willing to pay for it, and that’s a real problem.”  (Cypress)   3.4.1.2 Market competitiveness   Sources of market competitiveness relevant to the cases studied include market entry, market share, and differentiation.  In contrast to financial competitiveness, many respondents connected environmental sustainability initiatives to market opportunities.  A respondent from a case company driven primarily by external motivations indicated the following regarding environmental sustainability and new market opportunities,  “The more I hear about packaging and wanting to replace plastics, I think that is a really good opportunity for pulp and paper to be able to get into that market, and to not have the negative side effects that plastic has.  Pulp and paper mills do pollute, too.  But I think right now that seems to be a hot button with plastic pollution everywhere, showing up in our water, floating around the ocean, all these things.  So, I think acting on that will happen.  Plastic recycling has gotten better, but it's far easier to recycle paper.” (Hemlock)   61   Respondents from companies exhibiting both symbolic and substantive engagement connected environmental sustainability initiatives and market competitiveness.  A respondent representing the latter connected environmental initiatives and market differentiation as follows,  “I think we're differentiating ourselves from the competitors.  For example, one of our customers is a pretty big player.  We're the only provider in North America for [unique product offering], so that's a pretty big deal for us.  I think we're doing a good job of kind of not really competing with our competitors but trying to differentiate ourselves and providing a product that other paper manufacturers aren't providing.” (Oak)   3.4.1.3 Reputational competitiveness   Reputational competitiveness was frequently discussed in relation to primary and/or secondary stakeholders.  In most cases, respondents indicated environmental sustainability initiatives enhanced reputational competitiveness.  For example, a respondent who indicated primarily external sources of motivation stated the following regarding FSC certification and reputational opportunities,  “We are FSC certified here.  One of the benefits is, we work with a large organization, we have a pretty large customer in the [pulp and paper product] arena.  They want to be able to trace all the way back to the forest level, where our fiber is coming from.  So, you get involved in an organization like FSC and you're able to do that kind of stuff.  While it's not a regulation, it's not something we have to do, it's our choice.  But I think certain things like that help us because they're not going to want to go to a company, or frankly even a country, that they're not very comfortable with because they're not sure if they're following all the rules.” (Larch)    When comparing data from interview transcripts and secondary sources to determine the extent to which engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives influences respondents’ perspectives regarding reputational competitiveness, findings were mixed.  For example, several respondents were affected by the Victoria’s Dirty Little Secret campaign, as 62  some procured pulp from mills implicated in the campaign.  Respondents suggested “[environmental] groups would take out full-page ads in the Wall Street Journal,” (Cypress), and would do so to “[attack] Victoria's Secret for using boreal forest for their catalogs” (Redwood); both Cypress and Redwood demonstrated substantive engagement in environmental initiatives.  In the case of Cypress, when confronted about whether their pulp was obtained from a boreal forest, the company sided with their supplier, rather than the confrontational customer.  The respondent stated,  “We inquired with [our supplier] and most of their wood was certified.  They were not on the west coast where the old-growth rainforest was, they were more on the interior.  We were satisfied with what they were doing.  We felt that we could not cut them off as a supplier.” (Cypress)    While the respondent from Cypress indicated keeping their supplier was more important than retaining their customer, the respondent from Redwood suggested the reputation they gain as a result of their environmental initiatives is what keeps them competitive; research has long recognized environmental certifications enhance credibility and expand market share in the forest-based sector (Hansen et al., 1997).  The respondent from Redwood explained,  “We were just starting to chug when Forest Ethics was after Victoria's Secret for using boreal forest for their catalogs - Victoria's dirty little secrets. So, they were desperately searching for ways to mitigate that type of business risk.  They sent a third-party auditor to audit every one of our environmental claims to make sure that yes indeed we are doing it, and we passed with flying colors.  It's the point of entry. If we're not doing this, we wouldn’t get the business… the largest brands in the world work with us because of who we are and how we do it.” (Redwood)     63  3.4.1.4 Operational competitiveness   Numerous respondents discussed the cost of doing business in relation to operational competitiveness.  For instance, respondents frequently compared fuel costs (e.g., coal versus natural gas), as recent environmental regulation, specifically Major Source Boiler Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT), required many companies in the PPI to convert from coal to natural gas.  While little difference between case companies driven by internal versus external motivations was observed, differences between case companies exhibiting substantive engagement perceived environmental initiatives contributed to operational competitiveness, whereas companies exhibiting symbolic engagement did not.  A respondent representing a case company motivated by external factors suggested the following regarding substantive engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives to achieve operational competitiveness,  “You have to try and find ways that you can show that you're greener, that you're going beyond compliance in ways that benefit you economically.  So, an example of that is energy efficiency.  By investing in projects that reduce our energy use, we're reducing our greenhouse gas footprint; that makes us greener and it saves us money. So those are probably the biggest environmental opportunities out there, opportunities that allow you to promote yourself as being greener because you've done something new, lowered your emissions, and it's cost effective.”  (Cypress)    In contrast, respondents from companies exhibiting symbolic engagement in environmental initiatives, in other words, companies who did not appear to integrate environmental sustainability into their core business processes, did not perceive environmental initiatives contributed to operational competitiveness.  In one case, another case in which the company was driven by external sources of motivation, the respondent 64  emphasized environmental initiatives incessantly increase the cost of doing business, thus negatively affecting operational competitiveness,   “You try not to cost huge amounts of money, but to be perfectly honest with you, I think I throw $3,000,000 a year down the sewer just controlling [wastewater discharge]. Because I have to, if I don't, I don't get to run this mill. So, I'm always trying to figure out how to reduce that cost because that's a profit that’s going against the bottom line.  I can't change that. I can't, you know, and it's not worth my time. It's better worth my time to figure out how to reduce the costs of controlling it.” (Birch)   3.4.1.5 Technological competitiveness   Respondents discussed technological competitiveness in relation to product, process, and business model innovation.  When asked whether environmental sustainability initiatives contribute to innovation opportunities, respondents representing companies driven by internal sources of motivation were substantially more likely to connect environmental initiatives and technological competitiveness than respondents representing companies driven by external sources of motivation.  For instance, a respondent who indicated primarily internal sources of motivation, combined with symbolic engagement, suggested the following regarding environmental concerns and product innovation,  “A recent example involves coated papers, like sandwich wraps and things like that that have oil and grease resistant additives in them. There's been environmental concern over fluorocarbons in some of those.  People are trying to formulate coatings that are more environmentally friendly or perceived as being environmentally friendly.  And we've dabbled in that to some extent… Just from our experience, a lot of our customers that we have now, might not be our customers ten years from now, just because something new comes along or the market changes, who knows.” (Spruce)    In a case in which a respondent indicated primarily internal sources of motivation, combined with substantive engagement, environmental sustainability initiatives were connected to technological competitiveness via process innovation efforts,  65  “If we can get the water very clean in our wastewater facility, clean enough that we could directly reuse ten, fifteen percent of it, it's that chemical trash that's in the water that we have to really be careful with because now we're changing the chemistry of these recipes that we’re making our paper with… Not a lot of payback in it, but my hope is that there will be payback, being that you can maybe get it on the website eventually.” (Maple)    Finally, a respondent from a company demonstrating symbolic environmental sustainability engagement connected environmental sustainability to an example of business model innovation.  In this case, the company instituted a trucking company to advance recycling efforts.  The respondent explained,  “We own our own shipping firm as well, and this is an important part of the sustainability curve.  We ship our paper out via these trucks you see here, it's our own shipping department, and so wherever their destination is, they don't come back with an empty backhaul.  They bring recycled paper back to us.  So, that's another division of our company.  It's actually created another industry in itself.  We're sending it off to our publishers, publishers then print on it, consumers then send it for recycling, and then it comes back to us again. So, talk about full circle sustainability - this is actually our own paper we're bringing back to us.” (Eucalyptus)   3.4.2 Legitimation    Motivations associated with legitimation were often expressed in terms of compliance with norms and regulations to demonstrate socially desirable and appropriate environmental initiatives.  Generally speaking, the extent to which respondents perceived environmental sustainability initiatives contribute to legitimation paralleled the extent to which case companies engaged in environmental initiatives.  For example, a respondent representing a company demonstrating substantive environmental engagement suggested two environmental initiatives were pursued to enhance legitimation, despite the fact the environmental initiatives were perceived by the case company as redundant,  66  “There was a big push, I guess the industry one was the SFI, and there was really nothing wrong with that certification. I haven't tracked it in a while, but in some respects, it was typically tougher than the other one, FSC or whatever, but not in every area.  What was interesting is the other one, the one the environmental groups wanted, they wanted to ignore SFI.  Where they were tougher was more like more societal things, like treatment of indigenous peoples, and for most people here, there's nothing there.  So, it was not a big deal for us to cross over and get the other certification, because we started out with SFI, but some people didn't want to accept that.  But in the end, it was talking to people who worked in those areas, they said SFI was actually tougher in a lot of areas, most of them, but it didn't handle some of the other things quite as comprehensively. So, we have the two.” (Alder)    In comparison, a respondent representing a company demonstrating symbolic environmental engagement suggested symbolic actions were acceptable,    “Meeting with the stakeholder groups… you're never really going to do anything significantly different, to be honest with you… You may try to put a little PR money in the community to make them like you better, you know, get a few college scholarships, local fun days, that kind of stuff.  You try to get your neighbors, but when it comes to whether or not you make capital investments, or you spend more money on your day to day operations, is not typical. You're not really going to spend it, and mostly because you just can't.  In today's competitive world, you gotta do what you gotta do.” (Birch)   3.4.3 Ecological responsibility   Ecological responsibility involves ethical motivations to pursue environmental sustainability initiatives.  For example, two respondents suggested an environmental initiative was adopted because “it was the right thing to do.”  Nevertheless, only three respondents (Maple, Oak, and Redwood) indicated ecological responsibility motivations.  In each of the case companies these respondents were associated with, environmental initiatives were largely driven by internal sources of motivation (e.g., leadership values and company culture), and were combined with substantive environmental engagement.  When asked about 67  barriers to environmental sustainability initiatives in the future, one respondent suggested tangible resources were a greater barrier than intangible aspirations,  “Cost, resources.  It's not will.  We have a management team that is so committed to doing whatever we can, and it’s just as simple as our recycled fiber papers cost us more but we don't charge more.  Because it's the right thing to do you. That’s who we are.” (Redwood)    In another case, a respondent discussed ecological responsibility and stressed leadership is critical to the success of environmental initiatives,  “Once the business got going, the owners were sensitive to say ‘It looks like this business is going to work. We need to start paying attention to our environmental footprint.’  So, the support came from the highest level. And, we also formed an environmental excellence team… It seems like our team method is really dependent on leadership.  I lead a team for toxic use reduction.  The whole purpose of the team is to reduce use of toxic chemicals.  We have had some success, but not like the success the water team and the solid waste team has had.  Some of that is our process, but I think the majority of it is the leadership of that team, because of their leadership style and their position in the company. They are high level people.” (Maple)   3.5 Motivation and engagement typology  To make sense of businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives, I propose a two-by-two typology (see Figure 4).  The typology identifies diverse approaches to environmental sustainability, each of which characterizes a unique combination of business attributes.  Although a typology risks oversimplification (Cowton, 2002), it provides a useful conceptual tool to provide parsimonious explanations of a multifaceted issue.  The vertical axis represents the business’s primary source of motivation in pursuing environmental sustainability initiatives, thus distinguishing between internal and external sources of motivation (del Río González, 2005).  Internal motivations frequently represent leadership values, company culture, and competitive advantage.  External 68  motivations frequently represent reputation, legitimation, and regulation.  The horizontal axis represents the business’s level of engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives; it differentiates between substantive and symbolic engagement (Babiak and Trendafilova, 2011).  Substantive engagement typically involves significant changes to business objectives, strategies, and processes, whereas symbolic engagement typically involves the decoupling of environmental initiatives from core business objectives, strategies, and processes.  Depending on the primary source of motivation (e.g., internal versus external) and level of engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives (e.g., substantive versus symbolic), businesses will differ considerably in their approach to environmental initiatives.  I have identified four approaches to environmental sustainability in the US PPI: traditionalist, opportunist, pragmatist, and idealist.  This four-part typology is similar to Hahn and Scheermesser’s (2006) three-party typology of business approaches to corporate sustainability, which distinguishes between traditionalists, environmentalists, and sustainability leaders.    69   Figure 4: Motivation and engagement typology  3.5.1 Traditionalists   Businesses in the traditionalist quadrant adopt environmental sustainability initiatives (i) due to external sources of motivation and (ii) engage symbolically.  Case companies studied that fit this quadrant include Aspen, Birch, Chestnut, Larch, and Walnut.  Respondents representing these case companies emphasize the primary driver for environmental sustainability initiatives involves the new regulation and the threat of regulation.  Further, the case companies’ environmental performance, as measured by RSEI trends, tended to remain unchanged or worsen.  These case companies either did not adopt environmental certifications or were late adopters.  In most cases, company websites provided little concrete information regarding environmental objectives and progress.    Symbolic SubstantiveInternalOpportunist               Cedar                         Eucalyptus                  Sequoia                 Spruce     Idealist                 Maple                        Oak                          RedwoodExternalTraditionalist                       Aspen                               Birch                    Chestnut                 Larch                           Walnut         Pragmatist             Alder                          Cypress                               Hemlock                       Motivation Engagement70  3.5.2 Opportunists Businesses in the opportunist quadrant adopt environmental sustainability initiatives (i) due to internal sources of motivation and (ii) engage symbolically.  Case companies studied that fit this quadrant include Cedar, Eucalyptus, Sequoia, and Spruce.  Respondents representing these case companies often discussed aspects of competitive advantage as their primary motivation in pursuing environmental sustainability initiatives.  These companies’ environmental engagement was akin to that of companies in the traditionalist quadrant.    3.5.3 Pragmatists  Businesses in the pragmatist quadrant adopt environmental sustainability initiatives (i) due to external sources of motivation and (ii) engage substantively.  Case companies studied that fit this quadrant include Alder, Cypress, and Hemlock.  Respondents representing these case companies suggest the primary motivation for environmental sustainability initiatives involve legitimation and regulation.  Each of these companies’ environmental performance, when measured by RSEI trends, improved in recent years.  Further, these companies adopted environmental certifications with a mix of early and late adoptions, as well as presented a mix of abstract and concrete environmental measures and metrics on their websites.   3.5.4 Idealists   Businesses in the idealist quadrant adopt environmental sustainability initiatives (i) due to internal sources of motivation and (ii) engage substantively.  Case companies studied that fit this quadrant include Maple, Oak, and Redwood.  Respondents representing these 71  case companies overwhelmingly discussed leadership as the primary motivation of environmental sustainability initiatives.  Most of these companies’ environmental performance improved in recent years, and each of the three companies in this quadrant were early adopters of environmental certifications and voluntary environmental initiatives.  Each of these companies also presented concrete data related to environmental objectives and progress on their website.    3.6 Discussion  Applying the RBV, NRBV, and institutional lenses, this chapter has investigated and characterized diverse approaches to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.  Consistent with previous studies (Tuppura et al., 2015), the data indicate multiple motivations for pursuing environmental initiatives, primarily seeking enhanced market and technological competitiveness.  Additionally, analysis of primary and secondary data reveals considerable differences in businesses’ engagement in environmental initiatives among the case companies studied.  The typology provides a succinct characterization of the case companies’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability environmental sustainability initiatives.  In the next sections, I discuss implications, limitations, and opportunities for future research.    3.6.1 Managerial implications   As environmental sustainability initiatives, such as FSC and SFI certification standards, have become mainstream across the US PPI, it has become increasingly difficult for pulp and paper businesses to differentiate based on environmental attributes.  As evidence 72  of this, several of the case companies studied have abandoned FSC and/or SFI certification standards.  In the context of institutional pressures, Martín-de Castro et al. (2017) suggest businesses may adopt environmental sustainability initiatives without being fully convinced of the initiatives’ effectiveness, and, as a result, spend limited time and resources to substantively implement initiatives.  These findings suggest that to contribute to business sustainability and competitiveness, environmental initiatives must be carefully selected and implemented to address the specific needs of each business.    Additionally, one case company has obtained FSC certification, but does not disclose the certification on the company website.  This observation complements research differentiating environmental certification strategies from environmental labeling strategies.  Studying eco-certification and eco-labeling in the wine industry, Delmas and Grant (2014) suggest that although environmental certifications may lead to a price premium, environmental labels may reverse the price premium associated with certification.  Consequently, managers may question when and how information pertaining to environmental sustainability initiatives is disclosed to stakeholders.   3.6.2 Policy implications    This chapter contributes to the literature on voluntary environmental initiatives by examining businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  First, although respondents indicate environmental initiatives contribute to enhanced market competitiveness, they indicate environmental initiatives do not contribute to financial competitiveness.  In several cases, respondents indicated the adoption and implementation of environmental initiatives negatively influenced financial 73  competitiveness.  The negative association between environmental initiatives and financial competitiveness signifies a serious impediment to the effective diffusion of environmental sustainability initiatives.  It will be necessary for managers, policymakers, and scholars to better understand the reasons underlying this negative association.   Second, the typology developed in this chapter may also be useful for policymakers.  Merging internal and external motivations with substantive and symbolic engagement to better understand businesses’ approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives may be valuable to policymakers, should they seek to advance substantive engagement or suppress symbolic engagement in the diffusion of new environmental sustainability initiatives.  Understanding how to advance substantive and sustainable change will be essential for the development of effective environmental policy.    3.6.3 Theoretical implications   This chapter offers several contributions to research on business sustainability.  A thematic analysis of primary and secondary data concerning approaches to environmental sustainability highlight numerous challenges and opportunities facing businesses in the US PPI.  The primary motivations for environmental initiatives among the cases studied comprise both internal resources and external pressures.  Case companies predominantly motivated by internal factors often attributed environmental initiatives to leadership values, whereas case companies predominantly motivated by external factors often attributed environmental initiatives to regulatory requirements.  These findings differ somewhat from a prior study, which suggested the primary motivation for environmental initiatives among Spanish pulp and paper companies involved an improvement in corporate image (del Río 74  González, 2005).  As the promotion of environmental sustainability initiatives has become increasingly widespread over the past fifteen years, the reputational benefits associated with the adoption of environmental initiatives has likely diminished.  These findings raise an important question.  In a market crowded with environmental sustainability initiatives, is it realistic to expect businesses to continue pursuing potentially unproductive environmental initiatives?    The typology proposed provides four unique characterizations of business approaches to environmental sustainability according to the RBV, NRBV, and institutional perspectives; the vertical axis distinguishes between internal and external sources of motivation, whereas the horizontal axis distinguishes between substantive and symbolic levels of engagement.  Consistent with the RBV, opportunists leverage internal resources and capabilities to address environmental concerns strategically.  Taking it one step further, idealists leverage internal resources and capabilities to address environmental concerns because “it’s the right thing to do.”  Consistent with institutional theory, both traditionalists and pragmatists are motivated by external pressures to pursue environmental initiatives to varying degrees.  These findings differ from those of Hyatt and Berente (2017), which suggest internal stakeholder pressures tend to drive substantive environmental engagement, while external stakeholder pressures tend to drive symbolic environmental engagement.  The typology suggests the RBV, NRBV, and institutional theory may learn from one another, and a new theoretical approach could be developed through a combination of these perspectives.      75  3.6.4 Limitations and future research   Study limitations and future research opportunities must be acknowledged.  First, because this chapter relies heavily on semi-structured interviews, data reliability could be questioned due to potential participant and researcher bias.  Data collected from semi-structured interviews are subject to respondents’ recall error, lack of understanding, political preferences, and/or personal biases.  As this chapter examined voluntary environmental initiatives, social desirability bias is a concern; to address this concern, interview questions were phrased carefully response bias (Charmaz, 2006).  Additionally, the collection and analysis of qualitative data depends on the interpretations of the researcher.  To minimize researcher bias, primary data and field notes from semi-structured interviews with environmental managers were triangulated with semi-structured interviews with industry experts; following, interview data were iteratively triangulated with secondary data and relevant literature.  Second, due to a small sample representing a single industry and single country, the generalizability of this study is limited.  Consequently, future research might examine relationships between businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives among a larger and more diverse sample.    3.7 Conclusion   This chapter investigates business approaches to environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  While previous studies have examined internal and external motivations for the adoption of voluntary environmental initiatives in the forest-based sector (Tuppura et al., 2015), and compared businesses’ reactive and proactive engagement in environmental initiatives in the wood products industry (Räty et al., 2016), this research 76  sought to bridge businesses’ motivations for and engagement in environmental sustainability initiatives.  In doing so, I have identified and characterized diverse approaches to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.  The findings described in this chapter help to analyze opportunities and challenges related to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.       77  Chapter 4: Impediments to environmental sustainability in the US pulp and paper industry – The role of regulatory tensions  4.1 Introduction  Over the past several decades, businesses have paid increasing attention to environmental sustainability, which has propelled research by business sustainability scholars.  Research connecting business and environmental sustainability has made substantial contributions to our understanding of the types of environmental sustainability initiatives businesses tend to adopt (e.g., Buysse and Verbeke, 2003; Sharma and Henriques, 2005), the factors that motivate businesses to participate in environmental initiatives (e.g., Bansal and Roth, 2000; González‐Benito and González‐Benito, 2006), and relationships between the adoption of environmental initiatives and business competitiveness  (Ambec et al., 2013; DeBoer et al., 2019).  However, much of this research implicitly assumes businesses are active toward environmental initiatives, and thus overlooks businesses which are inactive toward environmental initiatives.   The gap between business action and inaction toward environmental sustainability has begun to capture scholarly attention, and recent studies have begun to focus on businesses’ inaction toward environmental sustainability (Chassé and Boiral, 2017; Finke et al., 2016; Slawinski et al., 2017).  This stream of literature has primarily focused on climate change and temporal dynamics, emphasizing businesses’ short-term focus is responsible for environmental inaction.  While environmental inaction is an intuitively appealing phenomenon to examine, a quantum leap from conscientious action to deliberate inaction is conceptually abrupt.  This abrupt leap hinders our understanding of similarities and 78  differences between businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability, not to mention the in-between phase wherein businesses are neither fully embracing environmental sustainability, nor are they outright denouncing it.  The spectrum encompassing conscientious action and deliberate inaction, as well as the space between, is the focus of this chapter.  Specifically, the research question I address in this chapter is: How and why do regulatory tensions manifest among businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability issues in the US PPI?  To better understand how and why businesses experience impediments to addressing environmental sustainability, I examine compliance with environmental regulation in the US PPI.  Environmental regulation was selected as the focus of this chapter for three reasons.  First, environmental regulation is particularly salient to the US PPI, an industry that is both heavily regulated and one in which environmental sustainability is paramount (Korhonen et al., 2015).  Second, effective environmental regulation and policy implementation will be necessary to address global environmental sustainability challenges (Pätäri et al., 2011).  Third, as discussed in Chapter 2, better understanding the linkages between regulatory environmental initiatives and business competitiveness could be essential to the development of the emerging circular bioeconomy (Näyhä, 2018).  In this chapter, I employ an inductive, multiple case study methodology to study regulatory tensions associated with environmental sustainability, as well as examine differences between businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability issues.      79  4.2 Environmental sustainability and business competitiveness  Over the past several decades, society has become increasingly critical of businesses’ impact on the natural environment (Hoffman and Bansal, 2012), particularly of businesses operating in natural resource sectors (Herold and Lee, 2017).  Regulatory agencies are compelling businesses to pursue market-based environmental initiatives, supply chain partners are monitoring and evaluating their partners’ environmental performance, and consumers are actively seeking more environmentally friendly products and services.  Increased pressure from stakeholders has accelerated business participation in environmental sustainability initiatives (Hart, 1995; Schaltegger et al., 2016), conceptualized here as strategic efforts to reconcile environmental and competitive objectives (Elkington, 1997).    As described in Chapter 2, extensive research has examined relationships between businesses’ environmental and competitive performance (Albertini, 2013; Orlitzky et al., 2003).  Research examining these relationships generally follows one of two instrumental perspectives.  The first perspective involves ‘win-win’ outcomes, in which environmental and competitive objectives are aligned within the dominant business logic to suggest environmental initiatives will enhance business competitiveness (Fremeth and Richter, 2011).  In this perspective, businesses respond to stakeholder pressures by communicating the importance of business sustainability and framing environmental initiatives within a defendable business rationale (Sharma, 2000).  The communication of environmental concerns, whether considered a threat or opportunity, encourages support among stakeholders for associated activities and initiatives (Kennedy and Fiss, 2009).    The second perspective involves a ‘trade-off’ or ‘win-lose’ outcome, which suggests businesses cannot manage environmental and competitive objectives simultaneously, and 80  must choose between the two (Hahn et al., 2010).  Scholars adopting this perspective suggest environmental sustainability is only addressed in business when there is a clear economic motive, which results in a trade-off, where competitive concerns supersede environmental concerns.  For example, Van der Byl and Slawinski suggest, “when pressed to choose between financial goals and societal goals, firms will normally favor their financial goals.  The result is that sustainability goals become secondary,” (2015, p. 58).  Embracing this perspective, environmental sustainability initiatives, such as environmental certifications and green supply chain management, are presumed to be motivated by competitive outcomes, such as increased market share, cost reduction, and/or improvements in productivity (Dauvergne and Lister, 2013).  Thus, this perspective suggests businesses engage in sustainability initiatives not to promote environmental sustainability, but to ensure business competitiveness.   Both the ‘win-win’ and ‘trade-off’ perspectives consider tensions between businesses’ environmental and competitive objectives, albeit in very different ways.  Within the ‘win-win’ approach, tensions are addressed by aligning environmental and competitive objectives.  Within the ‘trade-off’ approach, tensions are addressed by choosing between environmental and competitive objectives.  As these divergent perspectives are relevant to the study of businesses’ action and inaction toward environmental sustainability, this chapter seeks to better understand whether and how tensions are acknowledged and addressed in the context of the US PPI.      81  4.3 Action and inaction toward environmental sustainability   While a focus on the relationships between environmental and competitive outcomes has helped legitimize business sustainability research, the focus on environmental action, rather than environmental inaction, has hindered efforts to understand businesses’ perceptions of tensions associated with environmental and competitive outcomes (Judick, 2018).  While scholars have recently begun to study tensions associated with how businesses reconcile environmental and competitive objectives (Hahn et al., 2015; Joseph et al., 2018), little research has examined how businesses perceive competing environmental and competitive objectives empirically (Wright and Nyberg, 2017).  Focusing on climate change and GHG emissions, Slawinski et al. suggest, “What is lacking, however, is a deeper understanding of the reasons many firms simply do not reduce their impact on the natural environment.  To date, the corporate responsibility literature has not provided a clear conceptualization of firms’ inaction on sustainability issues,” (2017, p. 254) to pose the question, ‘Why do so many businesses remain inactive toward environmental sustainability?’   To examine businesses’ inaction toward environmental sustainability, I focus on environmental regulation.  As effective environmental regulation and policy implementation will be necessary to address global environmental sustainability challenges, it is necessary to better understand why businesses fail to comply with environmental regulation.  Therefore, in the context of this chapter, inaction toward environmental sustainability may be defined as businesses’ failure to comply with environmental regulation.  Wade-Benzoni suggests asymmetry exists between action and inaction, specifically, “we are held responsible (or we hold ourselves responsible) for harms that we cause through action but not for harms we fail to prevent,” (2002, p. 45), which largely explains the lack of research related to 82  environmental inaction.  While research has explored obstacles related to environmental sustainability initiatives (Delmas and Montes‐Sancho, 2010; Hoffman and Bazerman, 2007), this research generally focuses on challenges associated with the implementation of initiatives, rather than on inaction itself.  In a conceptual paper, Hoffman and Bazerman suggest regulation is a source of pressure for business action toward environmental sustainability in the US, as “regulatory pressure is still largely seen as coercive in nature, forcing compliance by threat of penalty or sanction,” (2007, p. 93).  The authors suggest obstacles associated with environmental regulation lead to compliance, rather than conscientious action toward sustainability, thus overlooking noncompliance, or environmental inaction.  Consequently, we have little understanding of how sustainability tensions, particularly those associated with environmental regulation, may lead to environmental inaction.    4.4 Methodology  4.4.1 Research approach  This chapter examines whether and why regulatory tensions related to environmental sustainability manifest in the US PPI, as well as how regulatory tensions differ among businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability.  To gain new insights regarding the nature of complex phenomena in a real-life context, an inductive, case study method was adopted (Eisenhardt, 1989; Yin, 2009).  First, an inductive approach was selected to allow for the development and refinement of categories, themes, and theory, as extant research is equivocal and underdeveloped (Creswell, 2013).  Second, the case study method was chosen because the research involves complex phenomena in a real-life setting 83  (Yin, 2009), namely how business tensions related to environmental sustainability are managed (Slawinski and Bansal, 2015).  Multiple cases were examined to draw comparisons across cases, address how and why questions, and contribute to the development of theoretical and empirical knowledge (Eisenhardt, 1991; Yin, 2009).  While theoretical perspectives provided a framework to investigate the research question, new insights were gained through an iterative process of inductive and deductive analysis.    4.4.2 Sample selection   This chapter employed a multiple case study design to purposively seek information-rich cases and capture variation in the research setting (Eisenhardt, 1989; Patton, 2002).  The sample population was identified using the EPA’s TRI database.  This database reports the chemical releases of 284 facilities with a NAICS code of 322 to capture pulp and paper manufacturing.  Focusing on a single country and single industry minimizes heterogeneity associated with country and industry characteristics.  Companies whose headquarters were located outside the US or whose primary market was not associated with pulp and paper manufacturing were omitted.  Additionally, all subsidiary companies were omitted to avoid double counting.  In total, 77 pulp and paper companies were included in the sample population.  A similar selection approach was used to identify representatives from industry associations, regulatory agencies, and non-governmental organizations; these representatives assisted in verifying case data and ensuring triangulation.    Cases presenting variation in environmental performance, geographic region, and product offerings were selected to ensure a diverse sample.  Sampling continued until data saturation was achieved (Charmaz, 2006); saturation was reached when no new themes 84  emerged from the data.  The sample includes four cases from the western US, four cases from the central US, and seven cases from the eastern US for a total of fifteen cases.  Cases range in size from approximately 100 employees to more than 2,000 employees.  Each case company has been assigned a pseudonym to protect confidentiality.  Two representatives from non-governmental organizations were selected to triangulate case data.    4.4.3 Data collection    To investigate regulatory tensions among businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability, this research integrates multiple data sources.  First, this research is embedded in extensive secondary data analysis.  Industry reports, including the 19th Annual Global Forest, Paper, and Packaging Industry Survey (PwC, 2017) and The PPI Top 100 (TAPPI, 2017), were collected and reviewed to gain a better understanding of environmental challenges and opportunities currently facing the PPI; data gathered from industry reports contributed to the development of the interview protocol (Appendix 3).  News articles retrieved from Google News US Edition were collected and reviewed to provide insight related to each case company’s environmental initiatives; these data were used to develop probing questions within the interview protocol.   Data from case company websites, such as self-descriptions, annual and environmental reports, environmental initiatives and awards, and press releases, were collected and compiled; these data provided a better understanding of each case company’s environmental sustainability initiatives.  Data extracted from the EPA’s Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) database were collected and analyzed.  The ECHO database provides information related to each case company’s regulatory compliance history 85  with the Clean Air Act (CAA), Clean Water Act, (CWA) and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).  Data concerning regulatory compliance history, informal enforcement actions, formal enforcement actions, and federal penalties pertaining to each case company were collected and compared.  These data were used to examine business activity and inactivity toward environmental sustainability; failure to meet regulatory requirements was considered an indication of inaction toward environmental sustainability (Chassé and Boiral, 2017).    Second, this research involves the collection and integration of primary data.  Primary data were gathered through semi-structured interviews with environmental managers and executives responsible for environmental management within each case company.  Semi-structured interviews provided depth and meaning within and across cases (Kvale, 1996).  Interviewing environmental managers was essential to understanding complex decision-making processes related to environmental management and tensions (Dahlmann and Grosvold, 2017; Toppinen et al., 2015).   An interview protocol was developed, pilot-tested, and revised prior to data collection.  The interview protocol (see Appendix 3) began with a broad question related to environmental management in the PPI.  Next, respondents were asked to describe the environmental initiatives of the company they worked for, as well as environmental challenges and opportunities currently facing the PPI.  Probing questions were asked to clarify responses and provide deeper insight.   Interviews were conducted with twenty participants representing fifteen case companies; in select cases, multiple managers were interviewed.  Interviews were conducted in-person (thirteen cases) or by telephone (two cases) between April and September 2018.  86  Each interview lasted between 30 and 90 minutes.  All interviews were conducted in English, digitally recorded, and transcribed.  Field notes were taken to record what was heard and seen (Eisenhardt, 1989).  In some cases, respondents were contacted by telephone or email to provide additional elucidation.  Two subsequent semi-structured interviews with industry experts were conducted to triangulate findings.    4.4.4 Data analysis Data analysis involved an iterative process of reading, analyzing, and organizing the data to identify themes, patterns, and relationships (Charmaz, 2014).  The data were analyzed using a thematic network approach (Attride-Stirling, 2001); analysis included line-by-line coding of primary and secondary data using qualitative software NVivo 12.  Initial codes included deductive themes based on the interview protocol and research objectives.  Focused coding was then used to analyze, conceptualize, and synthesize broader themes and categories within cases (Charmaz, 2014; Glaser, 1978).  Coded data were assimilated to develop case profiles (Yin, 2009).  Following, similarities and differences between constructs and themes were studied via cross-case analyses (Miles and Huberman, 1994).  Within-case and cross-case analyses were conducted to identify relationships between constructs, improve data validity, and triangulate findings (Eisenhardt, 1989; Yin, 2009).    4.5 Findings In the following sections, I summarize key themes related to regulatory tensions that emerged from the data.  Respondents were asked to describe their company’s environmental management strategies, as well as challenges and opportunities related to environmental 87  regulation.  Based on a thematic analysis of interview transcripts, six regulatory tensions associated with environmental sustainability in the US PPI were identified (see Figure 5); these tensions are not mutually exclusive, and do not occur in isolation.  An analysis of regulatory compliance data allowed for differentiation between active and inactive cases.     Figure 5: Regulatory tensions identified  Regulatory compliance data from the EPA’s ECHO database were collected and analyzed.  The ECHO database provides information related to each case company’s regulatory compliance history with the CAA, CWA, and RCRA.  Based on a comparison of the regulatory compliance history, informal enforcement actions, formal enforcement actions, and federal penalties pertaining to each case company, a range of business activity and inactivity toward environmental sustainability and compliance with environmental regulation was analyzed (see Table 10).  Because compliance with environmental regulation has been identified as a motivating factor for environmental sustainability initiatives (Petts et al., 1999), I consider cases in which a company has relatively more regulatory violations in multiple environmental areas (e.g., air, water, and/or waste) as inactive toward environmental sustainability (illustrated by dark grey rows in Table 10).  In contrast, I consider cases in 88  which a company has relatively less regulatory violations in only one environmental area as active toward environmental sustainability (illustrated by white rows in Table 10).  Finally, I consider cases with relatively more regulatory violations in a single environmental area or relatively less regulatory violations in multiple environmental areas as between active and inactive toward environmental sustainability (illustrated by light gray rows in Table 10).  In the following sections, I highlight differences among companies active and inactive toward environmental sustainability.    Table 10: Regulatory compliance of cases studied  *NC=noncompliance in past three years; SV=significant violation in past three years; IE=informal enforcement actions in past five years; FE=formal enforcement actions in past five years; FP=financial penalties from EPA cases in past five years  4.5.1 Regulatory impracticality  Respondents considered active and inactive toward environmental sustainability issues faced tensions in addressing environmental regulation they considered impractical or 89  unnecessary.  In many cases, respondents described examples of regulatory requirements their company struggled to comply with.  For example, a respondent from a specialty paper company considered inactive toward environmental sustainability suggested the reporting requirements for numerous chemical compounds have become so stringent, the case company the respondent works for has struggled to meet regulatory requirements,  “The standards we're having to meet are in the parts per billion for phosphorus, which has never been done before. And, one part per million for nitrogen. We've been trying to identify technologies to be able to meet them, we've been working on them for 13 years… We think we're getting close to having that solution, but we certainly aren't going to meet it with technology alone, so we have some implementation tools that are available to us as well, as far as trading, operating with permits, with other dischargers and nonpoint source controls, and things like that. But we're looking at tens upon tens of millions of dollars of investment into trying to meet these standards, that once again will probably not be met with technology, but that seems to be where we're going as a society. We're getting to the point where zero is the new number that we're having to meet, and obviously the technologies just haven't caught up to where zero is. So, these are threats, real threats to the future of our business if we can't meet these environmental regulations.” (Eucalyptus)   In some cases, respondents also questioned the purpose of environmental regulation.  One of the most questioned pieces of regulation involves California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act (Proposition 65), which requires businesses to provide warnings about the exposure of chemicals that have been linked to cancer, birth defects, and reproduction issues.  A respondent from a specialty paper company middling the active–inactive spectrum indicated the company (s)he works for had received legal advice to label everything as potentially containing a Proposition 65 chemical in order to protect the company from potential lawsuits; the respondent disclosed the following concerns,  “Prop 65, I personally have some struggles with.  There's no limits.  So, if you have one part per trillion of formaldehyde in your product, you need to label it, if it's going to California. That isn't helpful. What would be helpful if they had some set guidelines, but itty bitty traces that you're never going to see, 90  makes no sense.  If it's at a level that could do harm, that to me makes sense… I've gone to every single supplier and said "do you have formaldehyde in your product?" They all say no, but if we test our paper, we have trace amounts of formaldehyde, it's naturally occurring, it's going to happen. So, essentially, any time you sell paper in California, you should be saying you know it may contain a Prop 65 chemical, blah blah blah.  I feel that regulation kind of waters it down, because now if everything going into California has a statement that says it may contain a Prop 65 chemical, have you really done anything?  You know everything's labeled, everything is going to cause cancer, but you still need to use paper, wood, or build a house.” (Larch)    Similarly, respondents working for case companies considered active toward environmental sustainability issues expressed similar regulatory tensions.  A respondent working for a specialty paper company on the east coast stated the following,   “Like with many compounds and substances that are being identified, and in many cases publicized by the EPA as potentially having an effect on certain parts of society, the science has afforded us the opportunity to measure some of these contaminants down to extremely low levels, theoretically accurately.  So, with that ability, some of the ambient levels and the health advisory levels that the EPA put out are extremely low with some of these things.  And again, back to is it necessary to have them that low? … It's got a lot of people concerned because the impact that it could have on a company's ability to do business, to stay in business, based on things like that, is definitely a concern.” (Redwood)    4.5.2 Regulatory inequity  Respondents considered active and inactive toward environmental sustainability recognized similar tensions in situations in which environmental regulation was perceived as unfair or inequitable.  Among companies more inactive toward environmental sustainability, respondents discussed issues of fairness in the regulatory requirements across different states.  While all states must adhere to federal regulatory requirements, states may differ in the extent to which federal regulatory requirements are enforced, and states may implement additional requirements above and beyond federal requirements.  A respondent working for a 91  specialty paper company considered inactive toward environmental sustainability issues stated,  “States are not allowed to be less stringent than federal, but they can be more stringent if they want to be, and some states typically are… I think it's important for states to not go beyond federal.  Personally, I don't like it when some states decide they're going to go way beyond, that makes it hard for business.  If you happen to be in that state, now you’re handicapped.  I think to me, if you're going to have regulation, it needs to apply across the board.” (Cypress)   Respondents considered inactive toward environmental sustainability also discussed inequity in environmental regulation across regions, countries, and continents.  For example, a respondent working for a pulp company considered inactive toward environmental sustainability issues asserted,  “In the Pacific Northwest, in this area, you will see states that have regulations that you may not see in other regions of the US.  And in that case, some of the discussions amongst people in this area, facilities or mills in this region, they look at it like, well, if we have to do this and a competing mill in another state doesn't, we're at a competitive disadvantage.  Or, maybe even a competing mill in another country.  If they don't have to follow the same rule, we're at a competitive disadvantage.” (Aspen)   Respondents working for case companies considered active toward environmental sustainability issues shared similar perspectives.  While the respondents working for these case companies did not discuss regulatory inequity challenges at the state level of analysis, despite the fact some were located in states with more stringent environmental regulation, respondents from companies considered active toward environmental sustainability expressed concern regarding increasing competition in Asia, particularly China, where economic growth may be prioritized over environmental policy and enforcement.  A 92  respondent working for a specialty paper company considered active toward environmental sustainability stated,  “It's so hard to permit a new plant [in the US] nowadays, from what I've heard through all the legal, and the site permitting, and the air permit, and the water permit, and stuff like that that.  I don't think we're going to see a lot of a new paper mills here. I think people would probably just say to hell with it and go overseas, which would be unfortunate… I'm not sure when the last time there was a new mill built in America, which is very unfortunate because a lot of that has to do with government regulation.” (Sequoia)   4.5.3 Regulatory interaction   Respondents considered inactive toward environmental sustainability experience tensions in working with regulatory agencies, particularly the EPA.  In many cases, these respondents described their interactions with regulatory officials as intimidating and adversarial, leaving them less likely to want to cooperate with various environmental initiatives.  For example, a respondent from a specialty paper company considered inactive toward environmental sustainability indicated,  “We've even had bad regulatory experiences with [the EPA].  The EPA made rules, cluster rules, and forced a lot of people to make expensive changes, and then came back afterwards, on a witch hunt, looking for debottlenecking. Because of how the air rules are set up, if you make a change in your process, and you may not have done anything to this piece of equipment, but somehow, if you up your production over here, it causes some more emissions over there. So, you had this huge drop in emissions, and then they came back hunting for debottlenecking.” (Alder)   Similarly, companies positioned in the middle of the active–inactive spectrum also indicated tensions working with regulatory officials.  A respondent working for a specialty paper company noted,  “We had an EPA inspection back in the early two thousands… When we first heard this was happening, somebody told us, oh yeah, when they came to us, they actually walked in, threw their briefcase down, opened it up and said, 93  ‘Here's the handcuffs, in case we have to take you in.’  I’m like, oh my God, you're kidding me!” (Hemlock)    In contrast, case companies considered active toward environmental sustainability did not indicate regulatory interaction as an impediment.  Rather, respondents from companies considered active toward environmental sustainability often shared examples in which the company they worked for had successfully collaborated with regulatory agencies.  A respondent working for a specialty paper company in the Midwest stated,  “I think we're reaching a middle ground as far as overregulation versus things that we need to do in order to be good corporate citizens and that kind of thing. In my experience, and maybe it's because, you know, we don't have a lot of nasty things here, the EPA and DNR have always been pretty reasonable to work with… These are the kinds of things the DNR really looks at and goes, you know, we probably don't have to worry about [name of company] very much because they're on top of everything.  That’s not to say other mills aren't doing what they're supposed to be doing, but maybe they're not cleanly documenting as much in one nice little place, I can grab a file and everything is right in front of them.” (Spruce)   4.5.4 Regulatory oversight   Respondents considered active and inactive toward environmental sustainability expressed frustration concerning regulatory oversight.  In many cases, respondents faced challenges pertaining to the amount of time and resources required to monitor and document compliance with various environmental permits.  For example, a respondent from a company considered inactive toward environmental sustainability, which operates facilities in the Great Lakes and Mid-Atlantic regions stated,  “There's environmental standards, and then there's all the other stuff that's environmental regulation – all the record keeping, all of the permitting that you go through, and all the administrative stuff.  We can meet the standards.... but what gets so difficult is trying to figure out, you want to do a project, well, ‘what kind of permit do I need?’  And, ‘how do I permit this?’  The standards may not change, but it's all the paperwork that you have to try and go 94  through, and if you don't do that right, then you get sued by the environmental groups that are watching… Even the regulators don't understand it, they don't and some of the regulations are deliberately written so that they can be interpreted almost any way you want.  They like that, the regulators like that because then they can interpret it however they want to. I mean, the standards are pretty much set, but there's a lot of things, like how you do things, how you keep records, and your reporting, that is subject to interpretation, and that is very frustrating.  I'd like to spend some of my time trying to figure out beneficial use for, you know, we put sludge and boiler ash in our landfill. I'd like to be working on keeping that stuff out of the landfill, finding beneficial uses for it. I spend most of my time on reports and permitting and other administrative kind of things and, yeah, there's going to have to be some of that, but it's gotten overwhelming.” (Cypress)    Companies considered active toward environmental sustainability also conveyed frustrations related to regulatory oversight.  In an effort aimed at reducing federal oversight, a case company considered active toward environmental sustainability had recently met regulatory requirements to move from a Clean Air Act Title V operating permit to a state permit, and another company considered active toward environmental sustainability was in the process of making the same transition.  A respondent working for a smaller company that manufactures recycled paper products indicated the following,  “It’s tough. I mean, I don't know what other paper making manufacturers are doing, but we have a whole crew of environmental people here that are working. I mean, I'm the manager, so I'm doing the bigger regulation type paperwork stuff. Sometimes I feel like it's all I do is paperwork… but it makes it difficult for smaller companies to stay in business really.” (Oak)   4.5.5 Regulatory rationale     Respondents considered active and inactive toward environmental sustainability expressed tensions related to the rationale for environmental regulation, particularly recent environmental regulation.  In numerous cases, respondents questioned the extent to which 95  recent environmental regulation was based on scientific evidence.  For example, a respondent working for a specialty paper company in the Midwest expressed the following concern,  “When you sample for mercury, a test for mercury in water, take a sample out of the river, they’re testing at such low levels now and getting down to parts per trillion. So, the sampling protocol says, because people have dental fillings that have mercury, if you have dental fillings, you have mercury in your mouth.  It's in a different form that supposedly is not harmful, but it's still mercury. And they tell you, you can't breathe on the sample, because you might contaminate it.  I'm thinking maybe this has got a little too crazy because if the mercury is in your mouth, and it's not hurting you apparently, but you breathe on a sample, and that's going to cause it to be too high, something's wrong.  We're looking at too low a level, we shouldn't be concerned that far down. I know it bioaccumulates and all of that, so you have to take that into account, but I just think that if what's in our body already is enough to contaminate the sample, something's not right.” (Cypress)   In another case, a respondent working for a pulp company located in the Western US questioned the extent to which current regulators believe in science,  “We're living in a country where, you know, the president doesn't believe in science. I mean come on, so, we're not really doing science-based regulations anymore. Once upon a time we did, the 70’s, 80’s, even the 90’s, they were still pretty science-based. But we moved away from that, and we moved into the whole flavor of the month. Let's do things that look good, smell good, feel good.” (Birch)    Similarly, companies considered active toward environmental sustainability considered the rationale behind recent environmental regulation an ongoing challenge.  In several cases, respondents perceived new regulation was based more on emotion than on science.  A respondent from a specialty paper company headquartered in New England stated,  “And in my experience, this particular subject [perfluorinated compounds] got a lot of press probably three years ago. And understandably so, it sparked an awful lot of public concern and press, and a whole bunch of emotion came with it.  With the outcry from the public, that included to their legislators, that included to do something about this as quickly as possible.  We’re in the 96  world of, is policy being rushed, and judgment passed, and rules promulgated, that it’s happening currently based more on emotion than science?” (Redwood)   4.5.6 Regulatory uncertainty   Finally, respondents considered inactive toward environmental sustainability indicated tensions associated with regulatory uncertainty.  Absent regulation, decision-making processes regarding environmental management in the PPI are inherently complex and multidimensional.  When new environmental regulation is proposed, companies are challenged to mitigate prospective conflicts and vulnerabilities.  As a result, respondents suggest the imminent threat of new regulation impedes planning and increases risk.  For example, a respondent working for one of the largest companies studied stated,  “There's a constant drumbeat of new air regulations all the time.  It’s just built in, it's kind of built into the regulations.  They have silly stuff, like things have to be renewed or reviewed every five years. And, that isn't particularly practical, it's what some politicians came up with at one point, ‘Oh yeah, well, they can do it every five years.’  The EPA can't even keep up with it… It would be very difficult for corporate management to plan anything really, because you can get going and trying to meet one upcoming regulation, and then you have something else that comes along that totally affects it.” (Alder)    Additionally, while scholars have suggested regulatory uncertainty may promote environmental sustainability (Hoffmann et al., 2009), cases in which companies were inactive toward environmental sustainability call previous findings into question.  Respondents among inactive companies suggested that although the threat of new regulation stimulated the adoption of more sustainable products and/or processes in the past, the adoption of sustainable products and/or processes has negatively affected business competitiveness in the PPI.  A respondent with decades of experience in the industry argued,  97  “You don’t spend the money.  Companies got burned big time. Weyerhaeuser was a big one.  In the nineties, they had something called minimum impact manufacturing. In the nineties, it was sustainability.  Weyerheauser actually got ahead of the cluster rule requirements and started essentially modernizing all their pulp mills… They ended up putting additional requirements into the pulp mills that, in the end, weren't in the final regulation, and so, the companies that waited, you know sat there and fought the regulations and waited, from a competitive advantage, they made out… Companies aren't going to try to get ahead of regulations.  They're going to wait until all of the litigation is done and figure it out before they'll spend the money.  And you have to because you just don't want to, if you spend too much too early and your competitor doesn't, your cost of manufacturing goes up and you're going out of business.” (Birch)    In comparison, respondents from companies middling the active–inactive spectrum did not indicate tensions associated with regulatory uncertainty.  For example, a respondent from a specialty paper company in the Eastern US stated,  “We're pretty tuned in to regulatory change. We have a subscription to a company that sends us newsletters and we're tied in loosely with trade groups. So, when something new comes down the pipe, we kind of know about it and start learning about it and see what it's going to take for us to comply. So, on that front, it's not like regulations are popping out of the bushes to be a threat to us.” (Maple)    Similarly, respondents from companies considered active toward environmental sustainability did not indicate regulatory uncertainty posed a considerable challenge.  Whereas several respondents from inactive companies discussed various challenges surrounding the EPA’s National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for Major Sources: Industrial, Commercial, and Industrial Boilers and Process Heaters (often referred to as the ‘Boiler MACT’), a respondent from a company located in the Western US explained,  “The consultants sent us a heads up, ‘you're going to have to be under nine ppm by this date.’  Well, they make high efficiency burners, and then we would go to our boiler service guy. You go to them and they say, ‘Oh yeah, it's 98  coming. We're hearing it's coming down the road. We're retrofitting boiler after boiler after boiler, we're doing all the hospitals now.’  And conversations start, and we get a bid on doing it.  You're ahead of that curve, so you're not getting notice of violations because you're not meeting the new number.  Like I said, we came in just about a year ahead of the mandate on reaching those.” (Walnut)   4.6 Discussion By conducting an inductive, multiple case study to examine regulatory tensions related to environmental sustainability and observe differences between businesses’ environmental action and inaction, this chapter has provided insights related to whether, how, and why impediments to environmental sustainability manifest in the US PPI.  In the following sections, I discuss managerial, policy, and theoretical implications, as well as highlight research limitations and directions for future research.    4.6.1 Managerial implications   While the idea that environmental sustainability initiatives will enhance business competitiveness is attractive, cases studied indicate the ‘win-win’ perspective is difficult to achieve in practice.  Respondents frequently emphasized and explained the ‘trade-off’ perspective, rather than the ‘win-win’ perspective, when connecting environmental initiatives and business competitiveness.  However, the dominance of the ‘trade-off’ perspective among respondents is not necessarily discouraging.  Panwar et al. (2017) find businesses may vigorously pursue environmental initiatives, even when such initiatives do not lead to a ‘win-win’ outcome.  Hahn et al. (2015) argue managers do not necessarily succumb to tensions between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness; rather, managers may find a way to remain effectively engaged with conflicting demands.  Consequently, while this 99  chapter explores the emergence of tensions, it is important to recognize that tensions may simply require more integrative approaches by managers in the PPI, such that they can simultaneously pursue seemingly conflicting objectives.  Viewed this way, a key take away from this chapter is that tensions unraveled through this research bolster the need for improved creativity and innovation among managers in the PPI, a need that has repeatedly been pointed out by leading scholars in the field (Hansen et al., 2018).     4.6.2 Policy implications  This chapter combines primary and secondary data to examine regulatory tensions and compliance with environmental regulation in the US PPI.  The data indicate the environmental values and attitudes of executive management strongly influence compliance with mandatory regulation.  Specifically, cases in which respondents indicated executive management recognize an ethical responsibility to minimize environmental impacts were considerably more likely to achieve higher levels of compliance with environmental regulation.  Banerjee (2002) suggests understanding how executives interpret environmental issues is key to understanding how businesses develop environmental strategies.  Consequently, environmental regulation which fosters the environmental values and attitudes of executive management is likely to lead to higher levels of regulatory compliance and action toward environmental sustainability issues.    4.6.3 Theoretical implications   This chapter makes several contributions to the business sustainability literature.  First, this research differs from previous work in that it examines antecedents of 100  environmental inaction, in addition to environmental action.  Previous research mainly focuses on understanding why businesses respond to environmental issues.  For example, Aragón-Correa and Sharma (2003) differentiate between compliance driven environmental activities (i.e., reactive) and beyond compliance environmental activities (i.e., proactive), thus overlooking noncompliance (i.e., inactive).  While research has examined partial aspects of inaction toward environmental sustainability (Slawinski et al., 2017), studying inaction in the context of environmental regulation provides new insights related to ongoing challenges associated with environmental sustainability and governance.    Second, this research extends emerging literature on tensions in business sustainability by identifying and characterizing tensions associated with environmental regulation, as well as differentiating between environmental action and inaction.  By comparing businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability in the US PPI, this study provides a richer understanding of whether, how, and why inactive businesses perceive tensions differently than active businesses in terms of environmental sustainability.   Third, this research contributes to the ‘win-win’ and ‘trade-off’ debate.  While scholars supporting the ‘win-win’ perspective suggest businesses can simultaneously advance environmental sustainability and business competitiveness, the findings in this chapter suggest otherwise.  Among businesses both active and inactive toward environmental sustainability, businesses struggle to balance sustainability tensions and business competitiveness.   Nevertheless, these findings also call the ‘trade-off’ perspective into question.  Many respondents, including respondents from both environmentally active and inactive companies, appeared to be morally concerned with the environmental impacts their business and/or industry has on the natural environment; a respondent from a case company 101  considered inactive toward environmental sustainability (Birch) expressed, “I actually have a degree in environmental sciences. When I got out of school, I was going to save the world, that great baby boomer generation, you know, make a difference!”  Despite seemingly intrinsic motivation to engage in environmental sustainability initiatives, respondents indicate regulatory tensions limit their ability to address sustainability concerns, and, in some cases, the adoption of environmental initiatives could inevitably cost them their job.  Consequently, these findings emphasize the importance of recognizing diverse and complex approaches embedded in businesses’ environmental sustainability initiatives (Martinez et al., 2019).     4.6.4 Limitations and future research   This research is not without limitations.  The first limitation arises from my sample.  Because this research is based on fifteen cases within a single industry and single country, generalizability beyond the research context is limited.  Future research might examine a similar research question across a larger sample, multiple industries, and/or multiple countries. Second, due to respondents’ recall error, lack of understanding, political preferences, and/or personal biases, data collected from semi-structured interviews may be biased.  Similarly, because data collection and analyses depend on the interpretation of the researcher; as a result, researcher bias may influence the findings presented here.  Finally, environmental regulation represents only one aspect of environmental action and inaction.  While other scholars have examined environmental action and inaction in the context of climate change (Slawinski et al., 2017; Wright and Nyberg, 2017), future research might investigate other contexts relevant to environmental sustainability, such as resource scarcity, biodiversity, and social inequality.   102   4.7 Conclusion   In this chapter, I have provided a deeper understanding of whether and why regulatory tensions related to environmental sustainability manifest in the US PPI, as well as examined how regulatory tensions differ among businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability.  Specifically, I identify and describe tensions associated with regulatory impracticality, inequity, interaction, oversight, rationale, and uncertainty.  Additionally, while businesses inactive toward environmental sustainability appear to perceive each of these tensions, businesses active toward environmental sustainability do not appear to perceive tensions associated with regulatory interaction and uncertainty.  In several cases, respondents from businesses considered active toward environmental sustainability acknowledged positive interaction with regulatory officials and highlighted regulatory awareness through industry associations and supply chain partners.  By exploring sustainability tensions within an industry in which environmental concerns are particularly salient, this chapter provides rich insights regarding how and why regulatory tensions contribute to business inaction toward environmental sustainability.  I hope these findings contribute to improvements in environmental policy, as many suggest environmental regulation and policy enforcement are key to addressing global sustainability challenges.  This chapter identifies and describes numerous regulatory tensions which may be considered in the development of future environmental policy.  Overall, environmental sustainability policy efforts will require effective effort on behalf of businesses, government, and society.  It is my hope scholars continue to advance research related to inaction toward environmental sustainability to address environmental sustainability challenges.    103  Chapter 5: Conclusion  Facing complex and uncertain economic, political, technological, and environmental challenges, many suggest environmental sustainability initiatives will be essential to the long-term competitiveness of the PPI (Hansen, 2016; Panwar et al., 2015).  In this dissertation, I sought to examine approaches, opportunities, and impediments to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.    First, to better understand relationships between environmental sustainability initiatives and business competitiveness, my co-authors and I conducted a systematic literature review to examine the link between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness in the context of the forest-based sector.  Findings from the literature review indicate there are multiple ways of conceptualizing environmental initiatives and business competitiveness, and the relationship between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness is complex, nuanced, and ambiguous.  These findings offer important implications to the forest-based sector context, where environmental initiatives such as the circular bioeconomy are often promoted as a means of enhancing business competitiveness (Näyhä and Pesonen, 2014; Toppinen et al., 2017a).  Given the confounding relationships between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness, my co-authors and I reveal important lessons and suggest key considerations relevant to advancing circular bioeconomy research and practice.    Second, to better understand why and how businesses engage in environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI, I conducted an inductive, multiple case study.  In this chapter, I apply the RBV, NRBV, and institutional perspectives to examine businesses’ motivations for pursuing environmental initiatives and examine the extent to which 104  businesses engage in environmental initiatives.  Specifically, I differentiate between internal and external sources of motivation, as well as substantive and symbolic levels of engagement.   My findings indicate diverse and idiosyncratic motivations for environmental initiatives; to contribute to environmental sustainability and business competitiveness, environmental initiatives must be carefully selected and implemented to address the specific needs of businesses.  Consistent with findings from the systematic literature review, relationships between environmental initiatives and business competitiveness are complex and confounding.  Combining the RBV, NRBV, and institutional perspectives, I connect sources of motivation and levels of engagement to present a typology which characterizes diverse approaches to environmental initiatives in the US PPI.    Third, based on the confounding findings observed in the previous chapter, I sought to better understand why and how businesses do not engage in environmental sustainability initiatives in the US PPI.  As prior research in the field of business sustainability has focused on environmental action, this research aimed to investigate environmental inaction.  Through an inductive, multiple case study, I identified and analyzed regulatory tensions to better understand action and inaction toward environmental sustainability.  Specifically, I identify and analyze sustainability tensions related to regulatory impracticality, inequity, interaction, oversight, rationale, and uncertainty.  Differentiating between businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability, I find businesses inactive toward environmental sustainability perceive each of these tensions, whereas businesses active toward environmental sustainability did not perceive tensions related to regulatory interaction and uncertainty. 105    Finally, I discuss implications of the dissertation taken as a whole.  In the typology presented in Chapter 3, I differentiate between internal and external motivations, and substantive and symbolic engagement.  In the findings section presented in Chapter 4, I differentiate between businesses active and inactive toward environmental sustainability.  Connecting these findings offers valuable insights.  Specifically, businesses which engaged substantively in the environmental initiatives considered in Chapter 3 were not necessarily active toward environmental sustainability in the context of environmental regulation considered in Chapter 4.  In several cases, businesses which engaged substantively in voluntary environmental initiatives correspondingly failed to comply with mandatory environmental regulation.  Similarly, businesses which engaged symbolically in voluntary environmental initiatives correspondingly exemplified superior compliance with environmental regulation.  Consequently, compliance with environmental regulation may not be a viable measure of whether a business is active or inactive toward environmental sustainability.   Additionally, although internal and external sources of motivation were associated with both substantive and symbolic levels of engagement in the voluntary environmental initiatives considered in Chapter 3, the characterizations do not hold when considering regulatory compliance.  Considering the regulatory compliance of businesses substantive toward environmental sustainability, respondents indicating internal sources of motivation were associated with businesses active toward environmental sustainability, whereas respondents indicating external sources of motivation were associated with businesses inactive toward environmental sustainability.  Collectively, the research conducted in this dissertation emphasizes the importance of recognizing diverse and complex considerations 106  embedded in businesses’ approaches to environmental sustainability.  Collectively, the research conducted in this dissertation emphasizes the importance of recognizing diverse and complex considerations embedded in businesses’ approaches to environmental sustainability.  Overall, I believe this research provides novel insights related to opportunities, approaches, and impediments to environmental sustainability in the US PPI.      107  References Aguilar, F. X., & Cai, Z. (2010). Conjoint effect of environmental labeling, disclosure of forest of origin and price on consumer preferences for wood products in the US and UK. Ecological Economics, 70(2), 308-316.  Aguinis, H., & Glavas, A. (2012). What we know and don’t know about corporate social responsibility: A review and research agenda. Journal of Management 38(4), 932-968. Albertini, E. (2013). 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Zhang, Y., Toppinen, A. & Uusivuori, J. (2014). Internationalization of the forest products industry: A synthesis of literature and implications for future research. Forest Policy and Economics 38, 8-16.  Ziegler, A. (2012). Is it beneficial to be included in a sustainability stock index? A panel data study for European firms. Environmental and Resource Economics, 52(3), 301-325. Zucker, L. G. (1987). Institutional theories of organization. Annual Review of Sociology, 13(1), 443-464.   132  Appendices Appendix 1: Primary Participant Consent Form   Consent Form Environmental Initiatives in the US Pulp and Paper Industry   I. STUDY TEAM Principal Investigator:  Dr. Chris Gaston, Associate Faculty, Faculty of Forestry, (604) 827–1417.   Co-Investigator(s):  Jennifer DeBoer, Ph.D. Candidate, Wood Science, Faculty of Forestry, (707) 498–6486.  This research will be reported in Jennifer DeBoer’s Doctoral Dissertation (a public document).   II. STUDY PURPOSE  Complex economic, political, technological, environmental, and social uncertainties are currently impacting the pulp and paper industry’s competitive environment.  Given these challenges, scholars have suggested pulp, paper, and packaging companies explore new business opportunities, including new product development, strategic alliances, and environmental initiatives.  However, little research has sought to understand these issues from practitioners’ perspectives.  Thus, the purpose of this study is to gain a better   Faculty of Forestry Vancouver Campus 2424 Main Mall Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z4 133  understanding of practitioners’ experiences and expectations surrounding competitive and environmental issues relevant to the pulp and paper industry.    III. STUDY PROCEDURES  Your involvement will entail an interview lasting approximately one hour.  You will be asked about your company’s competitive environment and environmental practices.  With your permission, the interview will be audio recorded and transcribed to accurately reflect your perspective.  Only the investigator and co-investigator will have access to the audio recording and transcript of the interview.  Both the recording and transcript will remain completely confidential.  If you would prefer the interview not to be recorded, written notes alone will be taken.   IV. STUDY RESULTS The results of this study will not contain any information that could be used to identify participating companies or participants.  Individual responses may be described in research reports; however, all possible precautions will be taken to conceal individuals’ identities so that readers of the report will be unable to link participants to any research findings.  We will provide participants with the results of the study in a PDF format.  The results will be reported in a doctoral dissertation, may be presented at academic conferences, and may be published in academic journals.   V. POTENTIAL STUDY RISKS  134  We do not believe there is anything in this study that could harm you.  You may withdraw at any time and you may skip questions you would prefer not to answer.   VI. POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF THE STUDY  There may or may not be direct benefit to you.  As the practitioner voice is lacking among scholarly journals, this research will provide you an opportunity to share your perspectives on environmental initiatives relevant to the pulp and paper industry. When this research is completed, you will be offered a summary report of the research findings.    VII. CONFIDENTIALITY Your confidentiality will be fully protected.  All responses will be identified only by a code number and kept in encrypted, password protected files on a secure laptop.  Participants will not be identified by name or company in any reports of the completed study.      VIII. CONTACT FOR INFORMATION  If you have any questions or concerns about what we are asking of you, please contact the principal investigator or co-investigator.  Their names and telephone numbers are listed at the top of the first page.   IX. CONTACT FOR COMPLAINTS  If you have any concerns or complains about your rights as a research participant and/or your experiences while participating in this study, please contact the Research Participant 135  Complaint line in the UBC Office of Research Ethics toll free by phone at 1-877-822-8598 or by email at RSIL@ors.ubc.ca.   X. PARTICIPANT CONSENT AND SIGNATURE  Taking part in this study is entirely up to you. You have the right to refuse to participate in this study. If you decide to take part, you may choose to pull out of the study at any time without giving a reason.  Your signature below indicates that you have received a copy of this consent form for your own records and that you consent to participate in this study.     ____________________________________________________ Participant Signature     Date   ____________________________________________________ Printed Name of the Participant signing above     136  Appendix 2: Secondary Participant Consent Form   Consent Form Environmental Initiatives in the US Pulp and Paper Industry   I. STUDY TEAM Principal Investigator:  Dr. Chris Gaston, Associate Faculty, Faculty of Forestry, (604) 827–1417.   Co-Investigator(s):  Jennifer DeBoer, Ph.D. Candidate, Wood Science, Faculty of Forestry, (707) 498–6486.  This research will be reported in Jennifer DeBoer’s Doctoral Dissertation (a public document).   II. STUDY PURPOSE  Complex economic, political, technological, environmental, and social uncertainties are currently impacting the pulp and paper industry’s competitive environment.  Given these challenges, scholars have suggested pulp, paper, and packaging companies explore new business opportunities, including new product development, strategic alliances, and environmental initiatives.  However, little research has sought to understand these issues from practitioners’ perspectives.  Thus, the purpose of this study is to gain a better   Faculty of Forestry Vancouver Campus 2424 Main Mall Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z4 137  understanding of experiences and expectations surrounding competitive and environmental issues relevant to the pulp and paper industry.     III. STUDY PROCEDURES  Your involvement will entail an interview lasting approximately one hour.  You will be asked about environmental practices relevant to the US pulp and paper industry.  With your permission, the interview will be audio recorded and transcribed to accurately reflect your perspective.  Only the investigator and co-investigator will have access to the audio recording and transcript of the interview.  Both the recording and transcript will remain completely confidential.  If you would prefer the interview not to be recorded, written notes alone will be taken.  IV. STUDY RESULTS The results of this study will not contain any information that could be used to identify participants or participating organizations.  Individual responses may be described in research reports; however, all possible precautions will be taken to conceal individuals’ identities so that readers of the report will be unable to link participants to any research findings.  We will provide participants with the results of the study in PDF format.  The results will be reported in a doctoral dissertation, may be presented at academic conferences, and may be published in academic journals.  V. POTENTIAL STUDY RISKS  138  We do not believe there is anything in this study that could harm you.  You may withdraw at any time and you may skip questions you would prefer not to answer.  VI. POTENTIAL BENEFITS OF THE STUDY  This study may or may not provide a direct benefit to you.  When the research is completed, you will be offered a summary report of the research findings.    VII. CONFIDENTIALITY Your confidentiality will be fully protected.  All responses will be identified only by a code number and kept in encrypted, password protected files on a secure laptop.  Participants will not be identified by name or organization in any reports of the completed study.          VIII. CONTACT FOR INFORMATION  If you have any questions or concerns about what we are asking of you, please contact the principal investigator or co-investigator.  Their names and telephone numbers are listed at the top of the first page.  IX. CONTACT FOR COMPLAINTS  If you have any concerns or complains about your rights as a research participant and/or your experiences while participating in this study, please contact the Research Participant Complaint line in the UBC Office of Research Ethics toll free by phone at 1-877-822-8598 or by email at RSIL@ors.ubc.ca.   139  X. PARTICIPANT CONSENT AND SIGNATURE  Taking part in this study is entirely up to you. You have the right to refuse to participate in this study. If you decide to take part, you may choose to pull out of the study at any time without giving a reason.  Your signature below indicates that you have received a copy of this consent form for your own records and that you consent to participate in this study.     ____________________________________________________ Participant Signature     Date   ____________________________________________________ Printed Name of the Participant signing above      140  Appendix 3: Interview Protocol   1. I would like to better understand what’s currently happening in the pulp and paper industry.  What are some of the trends currently taking place? a. Could you describe some of the challenges currently facing the industry?  i. How are companies currently responding to these challenges?  ii. How do you think these challenges may change in the future?  b. Could you describe some of the opportunities currently facing the industry?   i. How are companies currently responding to these opportunities?  ii. How do you think these opportunities may change in the future?   2. We hear all kinds of things about the role of the physical environment and the future of the pulp and paper industry.  Some say the industry should reduce its environmental impact, others say the industry is suffering from environmental pressures.  Some suggest changes in the physical environment will threaten the industry, others suggest environmental issues offer new opportunities for industry.  As a result, someone such as myself is really lost as to what’s going on and would really like to understand your perception of these topics.  More specifically, I’m interested in understanding environmental challenges and opportunities currently facing the industry.    a. First, how do you think changes in the physical environment could hurt the industry?  141  i. How are companies currently responding to these environmental challenges? ii. How might these environmental challenges affect different types of companies?  For example, large versus small, new versus old, companies operating in different locations, multinational companies, etc.?1  iii. How do you think these challenges will affect companies in the future? b. Second, how do you think changes in the physical environment could help the industry?   i. How are companies currently responding to these environmental opportunities? ii. How might these environmental opportunities affect different types of companies?  iii. How do you think these opportunities will affect companies in the future? c. Changes in the physical environment (such as air and water quality, frequency of wildfires, extreme weather events, insect outbreaks, invasive species, etc.) both directly and indirectly affect the pulp and paper industry.  I’d like to better understand how changes in the physical environment relate to changes in the business environment.  Can you identify and describe an  1 Italicized questions and content represent potential probing questions  142  example in which changes in the physical environment may have led to changes in your business? i. Which environmental issues are most important?  ii. Why did the business respond?  iii. How did the business respond?  iv. How significant were changes to the business?  v. Were changes perceived as threats, opportunities, or both?   3. I’m curious about how environmental threats and opportunities in the future may differ from those of today.  Do you think environmental threats and opportunities will change substantially in the future? a. First, which environmental threats do you think will impact pulp and paper companies’ competitive strategies in the future? i. How might threats impact long-term company competitiveness?  b. Second, which environmental opportunities might impact pulp and paper companies’ competitive strategies in the future?  i. How might opportunities impact long-term company competitiveness?   4. Could you tell me about some of your company’s environmental practices or initiatives?  a. Are there any environmental practices or initiatives that are unique to your company? 143  i. If so, can you tell me more about these environmental practices or initiatives?  b. Why do you think your company adopted these practices or initiatives?  i. Were responses due to a perceived threat or opportunity?   c. How have these practices or initiatives been implemented within your company?  i. To what extent were practices or initiatives implemented? ii. Which departments were involved?   iii. Do environmental practices differ among departments? d. What are some of the advantages or disadvantages of these practices or initiatives?  i. What are tangible advantages or disadvantages? ii. What are intangible advantages or disadvantages? iii. How are advantages or disadvantages measured?   5. Finally, is there anything else you’d like to comment on related to what we’ve discussed?         144  Appendix 4: Primary Participant Letter of Initial Contact   Dear [potential participant’s name],   This letter is an invitation to participate in a study I am conducting as part of my doctoral degree in the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia under the supervision of Dr. Chris Gaston, Associate Professor.  I would like to provide you with more information about this research and what your involvement would entail, should you decide to participate.   First, complex economic, political, technological, and environmental uncertainties are currently impacting the US pulp and paper industry’s competitive environment.  Given these challenges, scholars have suggested pulp, paper, and packaging companies explore new business opportunities, including new product development, environmental initiatives, and strategic alliances.  However, little research has sought to understand these issues from practitioners’ perspectives.  Thus, the purpose of this research is to gain a better understanding of practitioners’ experiences and expectations surrounding competitive and environmental issues relevant to the US pulp and paper industry.    I would like to include [company name] as one of approximately twenty companies included in this research.  As you are involved in overseeing [company name]’s   Faculty of Forestry Vancouver Campus 2424 Main Mall Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z4 145  environmental initiatives, I would like to understand your experiences and expectations surrounding competitive and environmental issues facing the US pulp and paper industry.  The interview could take place in your office or via Skype and would last approximately one hour.  Your confidentiality, as well as the confidentiality of [company name], would be fully protected.  That is, the results of this research would not contain any information that could be used to identify any participants or participating companies.  The results of the research will be sent to all study participants once the study has been completed.     If you have any questions regarding this research or would like additional information to assist you in reaching a decision regarding your participation, please contact Jennifer DeBoer, the Co-Investigator, by phone at (707) 498-6486 or by email at Jennifer.DeBoer@alumni.ubc.ca, or Dr. Chris Gaston, the Principal Investigator, by phone at (604) 827–1417 or by email at Chris.Gaston@ubc.ca.  We will follow up with you in approximately two weeks.    I hope that the results of this research will be of benefit to the companies directly involved in the study, to the broader pulp and paper industry, as well as to the research community.  I very much look forward to speaking with you and thank you in advance for your consideration and assistance in this project.   Sincerely,  Jennifer DeBoer, Ph.D. Candidate Department of Wood Science, Faculty of Forestry  University of British Columbia    146  Appendix 5: Secondary Participant Letter of Initial Contact   Dear [potential participant’s name],   This letter is an invitation to participate in a study I am conducting as part of my doctoral degree in the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia under the supervision of Dr. Chris Gaston, Associate Professor.  I would like to provide you with more information about this research and what your involvement would entail, should you decide to participate.   First, complex economic, political, technological, and environmental uncertainties are currently impacting the US pulp and paper industry’s competitive environment.  Given these challenges, scholars have suggested pulp, paper, and packaging companies explore new business opportunities, including new product development, environmental initiatives, and strategic alliances.  However, little research has sought to understand these issues from practitioners’ perspectives.  Thus, the purpose of this research is to gain a better understanding of practitioners’ experiences and expectations surrounding competitive and environmental issues relevant to the US pulp and paper industry.    In addition to studying the perspectives of approximately twenty US pulp and paper companies, I would like to include [organization name]’s perspective in this research.  As a   Faculty of Forestry Vancouver Campus 2424 Main Mall Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 1Z4 147  representative of [organization name] who is familiar with environmental initiatives relevant to the US pulp and paper industry, I would like to understand your experiences and expectations surrounding competitive and environmental initiatives facing the US pulp and paper industry.  The interview could take place in your office or via Skype and would last approximately one hour.  Your confidentiality, as well as the confidentiality of [organization name], would be fully protected.  The results of the research will be sent to all study participants once the study has been completed.     If you have any questions regarding this research or would like additional information to assist you in reaching a decision regarding your participation, please contact Jennifer DeBoer, the Co-Investigator, by phone at (707) 498-6486 or by email at Jennifer.DeBoer@alumni.ubc.ca, or Dr. Chris Gaston, the Principal Investigator, by phone at (604) 827–1417 or by email at Chris.Gaston@ubc.ca.  We will follow up with you in approximately two weeks.    I hope that the results of this research will be of benefit to the companies and organizations involved in the study, to stakeholders affected by the pulp and paper industry, as well as to the broader research community.  I very much look forward to speaking with you and thank you in advance for your consideration and assistance in this project.   Sincerely,  Jennifer DeBoer, Ph.D. Candidate Department of Wood Science, Faculty of Forestry  University of British Columbia 

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