Clean Enterprises of the 21st Century

Project Details


The overall objective of this project is to ensure that Danish enterprises – and especially small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) - expand their voluntary environmental efforts in accordance with the European Sustainable Strategy and the IPP approach.

The project will promote identification, demonstration and dissemination of innovative technologies and practices complementary to those of the EU Competitiveness & Innovation Framework Programme.

The specific objectives of the project are the following:
1. Develop a new integrated digital toolbox for voluntary environmental improvements The process of working with IPP in industry should in the future be turned into an integrated networking process. Inclusion of all relevant internal units in the organisation – development, production, marketing – will lead to a comprehensive understanding of the environmental challenges and market potentials.

The existing Danish toolbox for IPP efforts is voluminous, but somehow obsolete. The paper based tools do not provide the user with the easiness and inspiration that can be built into digital tools, and the linkages between environmental concepts and tools are as a whole not included in the methodologies.
Further, as Danish tool development peaked about a decade ago, new approaches and tools (e.g., CSR, product chain management, climate focus etc.) will be integrated in the toolbox.

A thorough review of Danish and international tools will be carried out and relevant tools selected for digitalisation. The selection of tools will primarily embrace well known tools that are applicable in many enterprises, but the project will also seek to include tools targeting the IPP front runners enabling the project to harvest experience from this important stakeholder group.

An initial review has pointed at tools covering several different approaches, as though the final selection will be based on assessment of project resources and (among others): The complexity of the respective approaches; the present availability of useful digital tools; the envisaged usefulness for the target
groups. Among the relevant approaches are: Environmental management; Green procurement; Value chain management; Life Cycle Assessment; Eco-Innovation; Climate efforts; Environmental Communication; and CSR-relevant environmental themes.

The toolbox will build on the newest ideas for interactive learning tools and a main feature will be a new roadmap to tools and initiatives suited for companies in different situations as to improved environmental performance. In addition well-proven tools will be updated as to easy use of new environmental
knowledge and challenges.

The toolbox will be tested in pilot companies including frontrunners as well as companies with limited environmental resources and test results elaborated into the final toolbox.

2. Capacity building and education
One of the most effective methods of implementing the new concept and tools is training of trainers in organisations that are designated to facilitate and support industry. Thus, target groups for training will include: Industrial associations; Environmental inspectorates; selected NGOs; Regional and local business support centres; and enterprises. As the mentioned organisations are committed to development of enterprises and environment, spreading of the tools and concepts will continue also after the end of the project. A Train-the-Trainer concept will be applied.

Participation of the leading Danish university within IPP development and implementation provides excellent options for training and education. In addition to playing a key role in tool development and capacity building of institutions, Aalborg University, Department of Development and Planning, will incorporate tools and experience in the curricula of its specific environmental courses and education for engineers and environmental planners.

3. Establish a new national cross-sectoral coordination group for IPP efforts in industry.
The diversity of organisations and networks at national and regional level dealing with support IPP to the business sector provides access to a large audience. But the multitude of agents and the variety of offers combined with a lack of financial means to keep information updated hamper the effectiveness of the efforts. With the Danish EPA as leading agency the project provides an opportunity to form a cross institutional working group aiming at establishing a harmonised national approach to IPP support and further developing the national efforts for proactive environmental efforts in the business sector.

4. Demonstration projects
The project will demonstrate the effectiveness of the new concepts and tools through pilot projects in selected companies. Findings and case stories will be utilised to improve the tool box, and the practical results will become an important part of the promotion of the proactive methodologies.
Effective start/end date01/01/201031/12/2012