Formulating Problems for Commercializing New Technologies: The Case of Greening
Paper i proceeding, 2010
Starting with problems as the unit of analysis, this paper analyzes how a firm identifies and solves environmental problems and how this is translated into new environmental offerings. The paper shows that firms can employ parallel and unrelated problem formulation and solving processes for commercializing environmental technology. We illustrate this empirically by analyzing a multinational mechanical engineering corporation that developed and launched what they describe as a ‘green product line’ to help customers to reduce their CO2 emissions. This paper contributes to the management literature by providing an empirical study of how firms formulate and solve environmental problems and how the reformulation into an environmental problem changes the initial value proposition into a more generic proposition, thereby increasing the profit potential though the generation of new applications and increased usage.