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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Green Expectations: The Intended and Unintended Consequences of Implementing A Voluntary Environmental Management System


Over the past two decades, many corporations appear to have embraced a new approach to dealing with environmental issues. The nature and consequences of this corporate environmentalism has provoked lively debates in the academic and popular literature. This paper uses insights from organizational theory to reframe current debates on corporate environmentalism, focusing particularly on the voluntary implementation of environmental management codes. Models of organizational behavior are used to analyze organizational motives for adopting voluntary environmental management codes. These models are then evaluated with respect to the specific experience of the Mexican subsidiary of a transnational pharmaceutical corporation in implementing a voluntary environmental management system.

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