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The Use of Duty_ Virtue and Utilitarian Ethics in Environmental

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									      The Use of Duty, Virtue and Utilitarian Ethics
      in Environmental Communication


      -Based on an example from a Danish energy company




Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
The context

-     Part of the work in an innovation consortium called CEMIP (Danish
      abbreviation for ”Centre for Effective Environmental Communication in
      Product Chains)

-     The companies in CEMIP: Brdr. Hartmann, Coloplast, Elsam (now DONG
      energy), Junckers Industries and Vestas Wind Systems

-     Other participants: Aalborg University, Copenhagen Business School and
      FORCE Technology (project manager)


-     Further information on: www.cemip.dk (But in Danish)




Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
     Purpose of the investigation



The purpose of the investigation is to clarify the weighting of different
   company-related arguments used in environmental communication

The arguments are divided into 3 categories:
- Duty,
- virtue and
- utilitarian ethics

Furthermore the arguments are categorized according to:
- The weighting of the arguments and
- The reactions associated with the absence of the arguments




Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
       Description of the categories investigated (The company values)

                           Duty                                    Virtue                           Utilitarian ethics

           - Compliance with                         -Sustainability                         -Positive influence on
           environmental regulation                  -Openness/ honesty                      environmental image
           - Compliance with demands in              -Credibility                            -Give stakeholders information
Goal
           ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001                 - Responsibility for                    about environmental issues
                                                     environmental impacts                   -Economic feasibility in
                                                     - employee satisfaction                 environmental improvements
           -Visibility of environmental              -Visibility of environmental            - Environmental cost
           policy and environmental goals            impacts                                 management
           - Have control with the                   -Focus on reducing                      -Meet expectations from
Mean       environmental management                  environmental and health and            environmentally conscious
           system                                    safety impacts                          employees
           - Continuous improvements                 -Demonstrate development                -Meet demands from external
           relating to ISO and OHSAS                 - Employee involvement                  stakeholders (e.g. authorities)

           -Environmental                            - Environmental                         - Environmental
           communication reflects above-             communication reflects                  communication reflects above-
           mentioned duty goals and                  above-mentioned virtue                  mentioned Utilitarian goals and
           means                                     goals and means                         means
Action
           -The environmental reports                - The environmental reports             - The environmental reports
           and green accounts are only               and green accounts are                  and green accounts are only
           published as demanded in the              published accessible to                 published on the internet
           regulation                                everyone
 Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
 Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
   Elements in the questionnaire


Element in questionnaire                                                            Applied scale
Clarification of groups of employees.                                               The different groups of
                                                                                    employees

Semi-closed questions that clarify the main goal, mean                              0 to 4 within the categories
and actions that the respondent associates with                                     duty, value and utilitarian ethics
environmental reports and green accounts.

Arguments that clarify the knowledge related to
environmental reports and green accounts.
                                                                                    Ordinal scale from 0 (Strongly
Arguments that clarify the attitudes towards duty, value                            disagree) to 4 (Strongly agree)
and utilitarian issues (The elements in the presented
table).
Situations representing absence of duty, value and        Ordinal scale from 0 (Will not
utilitarian issues. The respondent is asked how he reacts notice it) to 4 (Will try to
to the situation.                                         change it)



Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
Knowledge about green accounts and environmental reports


                                                       H/R

                       Research and development

            Mineral products, sales department

                                 Project department

                   Central purchasing department

          Decentral environmental departments

               Central environmental department

                                                             0,0         1,0          2,0   3,0   4,0

                   Affects the development af green accounts and environmental reports
                   Knowledge about green accounts and environmental reports


Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
Results



                                                                                                  Virtue
                                                                                                  4
                               Virtue
                               4                                                                   3
                                                                   Absence of utilitarian
                                3                                                                  2             Duty
 Absence of utilitarian                                                  ethics
                                2             Duty
       ethics                                                                                      1
                                1
                                0                                                                  0


      Absence of duty                         Utilitarian ethics
                                                                        Absence of duty                          Utilitarian ethics

                          Absence of virtue

                                                                                             Absence of virtue




               Individual results                                                           Average


Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
Example - central environmental department

                                                                  Virtue
                                                                  4

                                                                  3

           Absence of utilitarian ethics                          2                         Duty

                                                                  1

                                                                  0




                        Absence of duty                                                     Utilitarian ethics




                                                           Absence of virtue


Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
Results - average for each group of employees

                                                              Virtue
                                                             4,0

                                                             3,0

                Absence of utilitarian ethics                2,0                    Duty

                                                             1,0

                                                             0,0



                             Absence of duty                                        Utilitarian ethics




                                                        Absence of virtue

                     Central environmental department                    Decentral environmental departments

                     Project department                                  Mineral products, sales department

                     Research and development                            H/R




Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society
Main Conclusions

-     The employees that react most strongly to the absence of specific issues
      are those responsible for preparing the environmental communication

-     The groups of employees included in the investigation were surprisingly
      well informed about the environmental issues of the company

-     Large differences can be found between the actions of different groups of
      employees to the absence of specific issues

-     The company now considers how to implement / distribute the company
      environmental values among the employees

-     The next step is to match the internal and external stakeholders




Mette Mosgaard, www.plan.aau.dk/~mette
Department of Development and Planning, The Division of Technology, Environment & Society

								
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