Expert Insights on Successful Multinational Ecodesign Projects: A Guide for Middle Managers

Giancarlo Medeiros Pereira, Charbel José Chiappetta Jabbour, Max Finne, Miriam Borchardt, Marcos Santos

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Both the conception and the implementation of ecodesign require a strong focus on change management due to the risk of failure. This study examines the pivotal role of middle managers (MM), which have been overlooked in terms of ecodesign, despite their importance to organizations. This research builds on the multiple case study method, addressing this gap in the literature by analyzing successful projects orchestrated by MMs. The findings indicate that MMs develop various actions according to the relevant phase of the project. In the initial phase, MMs tend to expand their knowledge of the benefits of ecodesign, as well as assessing their top managers’ (TMs’) expectations regarding ecodesign. In the planning phase, MMs encourage engagement in the planning process, while also liaising with ecodesign professionals, identifying actions and accumulating new information. During the implementing phase, MMs seek support and engagement from TMs, improving ecodesign knowledge across the organization. The limitations of this study stem from the methods and geographical focus: multiple case studies cannot be generalized, nor does the focus on Brazilian branches allow direct generalizability to other regions, although the insights can be useful for other emerging economies. However, these limitations present possible avenues for future research.
Original languageEnglish
Article number119211
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Early online date7 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Ecodesign
  • Change management
  • Transition
  • Sustainable
  • Sustainability


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