Research project on sustainable innovation

Motivation and research approach

Our world is in a state of urgency. The climate crisis is worsening faster than ever, and extreme weather is occurring almost everywhere on the planet. From droughts in Europe to increasing bushfires in California, France and Italy to floods in Pakistan and China. The world seems upside down. Likewise, global injustices and inequalities are on the rise, especially in the wake of the Corona pandemic. On a positive note, the concept of sustainability has been broadened to include environmental, social and economic aspects. In addition, the term is appearing on more and more agendas of countries and companies whose actions have enormous impacts on the world. ESG (Environment, Social, Governance) and SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) are commonly used terms these days, and most of us may have also heard of novel laws and policy resolutions such as the Supply Chain Act and the European Green Deal.

But that’s where the dilemma starts again: What do these terms mean and what regulations do people who have an innovative idea need to follow? How do they find the right niche for sustainable innovation and the right environment to work on and realize this idea?

One thing is certain: to solve the global challenges mentioned above, the solutions of the past will not suffice. Worse still, they have – in part – helped cause the current state of affairs. The project described here is intended to empower and support all those who want to realize an innovative, sustainable idea. It aims to provide an understanding of current sustainability regulatory guidelines and frameworks, as well as a step-by-step guide to finding a relevant idea and niche.

The research question to be investigated is as follows: How can we foster innovation (which is urgently needed to solve global challenges) in a non-transparent, multi-layered and highly regulated field? The end result should be a framework that guides/facilitates innovation in the “jungle” of policies. As a method, we will combine scientific research with practical investigations using the Imagineering approach. The work is based on the following hypothesis: the current situation with a multitude of frameworks, guidelines and requirements hinders the necessary innovation in the field of sustainability. The target group is individuals interested in sustainable innovation. The project pursues the value proposition of providing ideas and helping to be sustainable through innovation of thoughts, behaviors, products and services in different environments.

  • Period: Start August 2022, ongoing
  • Participants: 2 MUNA+ members
  • Result: Framework in written form incl. illustrations