What are the ingredients of a sustainable business? Australian academics Wendy Stubbs and Chris Cocklin have tried to develop a model of sustainable business based on two case studies, chosen as ‘ideal types’. The chosen case studies are both well-known already: US carpet manufacturer Interface Inc (which features – as one of the good guys rather than one of the psychopaths – in the movie The Corporation) and the Bendigo Bank in Australia.
These two examples do not typify firms that make shallow claims about their sustainability, eco-friendliness, carbon neutrality and environmental best practice. They are carefully chosen as firms striving for real sustainability, in order to show what could be possible. Therefore, I think we can regard the conclusions drawn by Stubbs and Cocklin as indicative of what a sustainable business should look like.