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Environmental preferences among steel stakeholders
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, Department of Biology and Environmental Science.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0702-0306
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Emissions of carbon dioxide, dioxins, nitrogen oxides and particulate matter as well as use of non-renewable resources and energy are some important sustainability challenges for the Swedish steel industry. Much effort has been made, mainly by technical solutions, which to a high degree have decreased the emissions during the last 30 years.

Technical solutions however will not be sufficient to reach sustainable development, stakeholder involvement is also necessary. Stakeholder theory states that stake­holder involvement must include a dialog between the stakeholders involved and the operation. The first step in this process is to identify which key issues the stakeholders find most important and then the organisation needs to start interact with its stakeholders. This thesis deals with such issues.

Stakeholder preferences for environmental issues were assessed with conjoint analysis, Q-methodology and focus group discussions. The theory of planned behaviour was used to assess how attitudes were connected to background factors and a potential pro-environmental behaviour.

Five studies have been carried out in the framework of this thesis. The studies include: a literature review, method evaluation, evaluation of environ­mental objectives in stakeholder groups, screening of relevant factors, evaluation of steel environmental characteristics, identification of barriers to the introduction of new materials and the im­pact of worry and risk perception on strategic environmental decisions.

It can be concluded that the methods applied in the studies work well in eliciting preferences. It has been possible to show how different stakeholder groups as well as individuals prioritise environmental objectives and sustaina­bility issues. Since individuals within a stakeholder group vary considerably in preferences, the results from this thesis show the importance of illustrating results on an individual level instead of the traditional group level. Also, a method has been tested where the results were brought back to the respondents in order to stimulate discussions between different stakeholder groups.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Kalmar: Linnaeus University Press, 2013. , p. 148
Series
Linnaeus University Dissertations ; 145
Keywords [en]
conjoint analysis, environmental communication, focus group, light weighting, PLS, preferences, Q-methodology, risk perception, steel, stakeholders
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science, Environmental Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-28310ISBN: 978-91-87427-46-6 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-28310DiVA, id: diva2:642190
Public defence
2013-09-20, Fullriggaren, Barlastgatan 11, Kalmar, 09:30 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental ResearchAvailable from: 2013-09-09 Created: 2013-08-20 Last updated: 2018-05-16Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Conjoint analysis for environmental evaluation: a review of methods and applications.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Conjoint analysis for environmental evaluation: a review of methods and applications.
2008 (English)In: Environmental science and pollution research international, ISSN 0944-1344, E-ISSN 1614-7499, Vol. 15, no 3, p. 244-257Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND, AIM AND SCOPE: Conjoint analysis and the related choice-modelling methods have been used for many years in marketing research to evaluate consumer behaviour and preferences for different kinds of product attributes. Recently, the number of applications in environmental science and management has started to grow. Conjoint analysis is found in many different forms, and the environmental studies evaluated in this review display the same range of methods as in other fields. The key characteristic of all these methods is that trade-offs are evaluated by jointly considering a number of important attributes. MAIN FEATURES: This paper is a review of the literature on environmental applications of conjoint analysis and assesses in which environmental area conjoint analysis has been most successful. The method and the design of the studies are reviewed as well. RESULTS: A total of 84 studies were found, dealing with environmental issues that were evaluated by conjoint analysis. The studies concern agriculture, ecosystem management, energy, environmental evaluation, forestry, land management, pollution, products, recreation, environmental risk analysis and waste management. DISCUSSION: Choice experiments seem to have a comparatively stronger position in environmental studies than elsewhere. Most of the environmental applications are related to natural resource management. This is somewhat surprising, but a number of reports have appeared also on product evaluation, which could be a key application area in the future. CONCLUSIONS: Compared to marketing and transportation, the number of environmental conjoint studies is rather small but increasing, and the method has proven to work effectively in eliciting preferences on environmental issues. In environmental issues, experimenters often use choice experiments, especially concerning ecosystem management and environmental evaluations. When it comes to evaluating preferences concerning agriculture, forestry, energy and products, a more traditional approach of conjoint analysis is favoured. RECOMMENDATIONS AND PERSPECTIVES: Two new areas of application are identified in this review--environmental communication and expert elicitation. Conjoint analysis can thus be developed into a useful instrument for environmental risk analysis and communication, both of which are necessary for an efficient approach to risk governance.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Berlin, 2008
Keywords
Choice experiments, Conjoint analysis, Environmental communication, Environmental valuation, Environmental expert elicitation, Environmental management, Environmental risk analysis, Review
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science, Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hik:diva-1478 (URN)10.1065/espr2008.02.479 (DOI)18504844 (PubMedID)
Available from: 2009-04-28 Created: 2009-04-28 Last updated: 2018-05-16Bibliographically approved
2. Illustrating individual preferences from conjiont analysis studies with multivariate methods
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Illustrating individual preferences from conjiont analysis studies with multivariate methods
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science, Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-28711 (URN)
Projects
Stålkretsloppet
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research
Available from: 2013-09-05 Created: 2013-09-05 Last updated: 2018-05-16Bibliographically approved
3. Steel industry environmental objectives:stakeholder preference assessment usingconjoint analysis
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Steel industry environmental objectives:stakeholder preference assessment usingconjoint analysis
2013 (English)In: Ironmaking & steelmaking, ISSN 0301-9233, E-ISSN 1743-2812, Vol. 40, no 8, p. 605-612Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The Swedish steel industry has combined traditional methods such as life cycle analysis with less traditional methods such as preference analysis in order to move towards a closed steel eco cycle. The paper describes the use of conjoint analysis to study preferences of six different stakeholder groups regarding four environmental objectives (reduction in carbon dioxide emissions, reduced use of non-renewable resources, reduced use of non-renewable energy and weight reduction in products) and to identify gaps in preferences between the stakeholder groups. Our results suggested that there was a difference in preference between the stakeholder groups: respondents that were closer to the steel industry favoured all four environmental objectives, while members of public and political decision makers preferred a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. One of the conclusions of our study is that there is a need of improved information to clients and public on the environmental benefits of product weight reduction.

Keywords
Conjoint analysis, Environmental objective, PLS, Steel, Stated preference, Weight reduction
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science, Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-23341 (URN)10.1179/1743281212Y.0000000087 (DOI)000327015200007 ()2-s2.0-84888409277 (Scopus ID)
Projects
Stålkretsloppet
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research
Available from: 2013-01-08 Created: 2013-01-08 Last updated: 2018-05-16Bibliographically approved
4. Why Aren't Advanced High–Strength Steels More Widely Used?: Stakeholder Preferences and Perceived Barriers to New Materials
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Why Aren't Advanced High–Strength Steels More Widely Used?: Stakeholder Preferences and Perceived Barriers to New Materials
2015 (English)In: Journal of Industrial Ecology, ISSN 1088-1980, E-ISSN 1530-9290, Vol. 19, no 4, p. 645-655Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Advanced high-strength steels may reduce the use of nonrenewable resources and energy given that the amount of material needed is smaller, compared to traditional steel grades. Still, advanced steel grades are not utilized to the extent that could be expected. This study examines stakeholders’ preferences of steel characteristics and perceived barriers to the introduction of new materials. Focus group interviews were used to identify steel characteristics and perceived barriers. Stakeholder preferences of steel characteristics were evaluated through a conjoint analysis; the results showed that low weight was given the highest priority, followed by high impact strength and low price. Low chromium content was the steel characteristic of least interest. Perceived barriers to the introduction of high-strength steel were categorized as technical barriers, knowledge barriers, scrap management barriers, suitability barriers, and cost barriers.

National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science, Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-28722 (URN)10.1111/jiec.12212 (DOI)000362594200011 ()2-s2.0-84942253678 (Scopus ID)
Projects
Stålkretsloppet
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research
Available from: 2013-09-05 Created: 2013-09-05 Last updated: 2018-05-16Bibliographically approved
5. Risk perception and worry in environmental decision-making - a case study within the Swedish steel industry
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Risk perception and worry in environmental decision-making - a case study within the Swedish steel industry
2017 (English)In: Journal of Risk Research, ISSN 1366-9877, E-ISSN 1466-4461, Vol. 20, no 9, p. 1173-1194Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Sustainable development is an important issue for the industry in order to fulfil legislation requirements and to be able to use green marketing as a competitive advantage. The Swedish steel industry has implemented a large number of environmental improvements, for example, within energy efficiency, raw materials and recyclability. Technical improvements can help the industry decrease its environmental impact; however, in order to reach sustainable development, more factors need to be considered: an effective environmental decision-making process, for example. This process may be influenced by personal factors such as risk perception and worry, which are factors that will not contribute to an effective decision-making process. The aim of this study was to investigate if personal worry and risk perception influenced environmental decision-making within the Swedish steel industry. Thirty-eight interviews were performed at 10 Swedish steelworks using the Q-methodology. The major perceived environmental risks with the facility and personal worry were assessed, compared to the day-to-day work. It was concluded that the major perceived risks were emissions of carbon dioxide, use of non-renewable energy and emissions of particulate matter. The decision-makers were mainly worried about emissions of carbon dioxide, emissions of dioxin and use of non-renewable energy. The environmental issues that were prioritised in practice (day-to-day work) were emissions of carbon dioxide, emissions of particulate matter and emissions of metals. Even though emissions of carbon dioxide were given the highest priority in the Q-sorts, there was in general no clear relationship between risk perception and personal worry with the prioritised environmental issues at the steelworks. The quantitative analysis of the Q-sorts and the qualitative interviews both showed that the day-to-day work was unaffected by personal worry and risk.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2017
Keywords
Decision-maker, Q-methodology, Risk perception, Steelwork, Worry
National Category
Environmental Sciences
Research subject
Natural Science, Environmental Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-28705 (URN)10.1080/13669877.2016.1153498 (DOI)000407463100005 ()
Projects
Stålkretsloppet
Funder
Mistra - The Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research
Available from: 2013-09-05 Created: 2013-09-05 Last updated: 2018-05-16Bibliographically approved

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