TIM Publication in Journal of Cleaner Production

  Robin Kleer Copyright: © Robin Kleer   Stephan Hankammer Copyright: © Stephan Hankammer

In the think piece published in the Journal of Cleaner Production, Stephan Hankammer and Robin Kleer discuss concepts of consumer integration into the value creation process and their enabling technologies as possible constituting elements of alternative organizational models in a degrowth society. The concept of degrowth aims fundamentally at reducing material and energy throughput equitably, while questioning the desirability of further economic growth. To date, collaborative value creation concepts, such as crowdsourcing and mass customization, have been discussed almost exclusively as business model patterns for companies in economies that are set to grow. The same applies to the assessment of (new) technologies, such as additive manufacturing, web-based user interfaces for co-creation, and other flexible production technologies that allow for collaborative and individualized production. Potential positive and negative effects of these concepts and technologies with regard to the objectives of degrowth are discussed in order to initiate a debate about the inclusion of CVC for the design of alternative organizational models that are in line with degrowth thinking.

The think piece illustrates that several elements of collaborative value creation and its enabling technologies coincide with degrowth objectives but do not lead per se to their attainment. Thereby, a starting point for future (empirical) work in this area is generated.