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Constrained innovation on sustainability in the global wine industry

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In dynamic and turbulent contexts many firms are trying to develop innovative sustainability solutions. Winery managers across the globe from this study discussed sustainability innovations in terms of product innovation (products, services, and product-service bundles), process innovation, and organizational innovation. However, forces act to constrain sustainability innovations in some agricultural industries including the wine industry. This article reports findings on forces constraining sustainability innovation from an ongoing seven-year investigation into global contemporary wine marketing and sustainability. This inductive theory-building grounded theory study involved a large number of in-depth interviews and used traditional interpretive trustworthiness criteria to ensure valid data were collected and the best interpretations out of multiple possible ones considered by the research term were developed. Executive perspectives from wineries of seven countries yielded insights to four significant constraints to sustainability innovations (i.e. competing motivations, variation in innovation approaches, lack of resources, and lack of a sustainability orientation) and why, in some cases, overcoming these constraints can be difficult, retarding progress toward sustainability goals. These executives also shared insights to strategies, processes and capabilities that enabled them to overcome constraints.
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Keywords: Wine; constraints; grounded theory; innovation; sustainability

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Business Administration, University of Verona, Verona, Italy 2: Department of Marketing & SCM, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN, USA 3: Department of Management, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, USA

Publication date: April 3, 2017

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