Show simple item record

dc.contributor.authorMitchell, Sinéad
dc.contributor.authorO'Dowd, Paul
dc.contributor.authorDimache, Aurora
dc.identifier.citationMitchell, Sinéad, O'Dowd, Paul, & Dimache, Aurora. (2010). Environmental challenges and opportunities for European manufacturing SMEs Paper presented at the International Manufacturing Conference 27, Galway, Ireland, 01- 03 September.en_IE
dc.description.abstractMany owner/managers of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) do not believe that their business operations have a negative impact on the environment. However, cumulatively their effect is considerable; the SME sector is responsible for an estimated 60-70% of pollution related to manufacturing, and 70% of industrial waste production in Europe. This study reports on research carried out by the FutureSME project, a Framework 7 programme sponsored by the European Union. The study was carried out on 11 manufacturingrelated SMEs from Italy, Ireland, Turkey, Czech Republic and the UK. The aim of the survey was to gain an overview into their environmental practices, to determine what challenges they faced and to see whether they considered there were opportunities in the environmental area. Following the initial survey, interviews took place with two of the SMEs. The findings indicated that the SMEs surveyed viewed legislation, large customers and competitors as the main drivers of environmental change. Energy and waste are considered the most important issues. The majority of the SMEs measured some cost-related environmental indicators. However, most did not use tools and techniques to measure the entire life cycle impact of their products. None of the SMEs viewed environmental change exclusively as a major threat to their business. The majority of the SMEs could see opportunities related to environmental issues, such as the design of new products and greener manufacturing processes.en_IE
dc.description.sponsorshipWe thank the European Commission for funding our research within the 7th Framework Programme FutureSME project (
dc.publisherInternational Manufacturing Conference 27en_IE
dc.relation.ispartofInternational Manufacturing Conference 27en
dc.subjectEnvironmental challengesen_IE
dc.subjectSmall Medium Enterprise (SME)en_IE
dc.titleEnvironmental challenges and opportunities for European manufacturing SMEsen_IE
dc.typeConference Paperen_IE
dc.contributor.funderSeventh Framework Programmeen_IE
dc.local.contactSinéad Mitchell. Email:

Files in this item

Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Ireland
This item is available under the Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Ireland. No item may be reproduced for commercial purposes. Please refer to the publisher's URL where this is made available, or to notes contained in the item itself. Other terms may apply.

The following license files are associated with this item:


This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record