Capturing the sustainability features that most affect consumer evaluations case: mobile phones

Anu Bask*, Merja Halme, Markku Kuula

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


A product’s sustainability affects its consumer evaluation. Sustainable supply chain management (SSCM) research emphasizes the customer role, but typically adopts the company view. On the other hand, when consumer choice is studied, sustainability is mostly evaluated in terms of one feature only, instead of the many facets of sustainability. This research gap has been filled in this study by broadening the view of SSCM to encompass how the consumer relates to different features of sustainability. SSCM literature is first used to construct a conceptual framework for consumer product evaluations and to provide a basis for focus group discussions aimed at identifying the different sustainability features. The case product (mobile phones) has high volumes and short lifecycles that affect environmental sustainability. In our focus group results, all framework themes were present with varying importance. The groups unanimously wished to extend the lifecycle of the phones, an observation affecting product design. A strong demand for information sharing related to supplier management and recycling was also discovered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311-330
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2 Oct 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • consumer perceptions
  • focus groups
  • mobile phones
  • supply chain
  • Sustainability


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