‘Balancing Green’ → Yossi Sheffi (Author): When to Embrace Sustainability in a Business (and When Not To)

Dr. Sheffi is Director of MIT’s Transportation and Logistics, and holds a dual appointment at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and at the Engineering Systems Division. He is an expert in systems optimization, risk analysis and supply chain management, which are the subjects he teaches and researches at MIT. He is the author of dozens of scientific publications and three books. Outside the university, Professor Sheffi is an active entrepreneur, having founded five successful companies, and a sought-after speaker in corporate and professional events. He obtained his B.Sc. from the Technion in Israel in 1975, his S.M. from MIT in 1977, and Ph.D. from MIT in 1978.

In this episode, the following topics are discussed:

  • Balancing green pressures and corporate pressures
  • It is not planet vs profit, instead it is people vs people
  • Companies are running the global supply chain, providing the jobs, and are also responsible for a lot of the environmental impact
  • How many people will pay 10% more money for a sustainable product?
  • Tesla in Hong Kong: government incentives
  • Convenience and low cost vs the environment: How many people buy on Amazon?  How do you feel about the packaging that goes to landfill? 
  • Until consumers agree to pay more for sustainability, companies will not change their fundamentals of production
  • Companies will save energy, minimize risk, and hedging with a green product line for millennials
  • Sustainability is a supply chain issue
  • Is Apple or Microsoft sustainable?  They do not manufacture anything, until you look at the supply chain impact
  • Coca-Cola says they reduced the amount of water in bottling plant, but it takes vast amount of water to grow sugar cane
  • Carbon impact of detergent is making the water hot
  • Deep sustainability:  Patagonia and Dr. Bronner
  • Unilever trains farmers who grow tea
  • Natura invests a lot in the welfare of the Amazon
  • Starbucks has 120,000 coffee growers who they invest in and train
  • Is the consumer willing to pay more?
  • Maybe not until we have a lot more desires
  • Will Shanghai flood? 
  • Social responsibility, shared values, and making a case for social responsibility
  • Supply chain is holistic thinking


Balancing Green: When to Embrace Sustainability in a Business (and When Not To)

Dr. Yossi Sheffi LinkedIn

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