There are an increasing number of business sustainability handbooks on the market, but perhaps few are as complete or sophisticated as this one. Favoring a scientific approach to the problem of business sustainability, it could function as a guidebook and toolbox for businesses interested in becoming sustainable or furthering their progress down this path.
Structurally, the book focuses on nine stakeholders in a business—consumers, customers, employees, suppliers, investors, communities, government agencies, NGOs, and the media. Though thorough, the book never comes across as too detailed or sluggish. Rather, its ability to zero in on different groups, all the while emphasizing the importance of holistic cooperation to a business’s sustainability effort, makes it an excellent resource for reference. Each section features takeaways, diagrams, and an internal structure that lends itself well to notetaking. After the main body, a set of excellent back matter, including a comprehensive assessment tool, rounds out this book’s extreme usefulness.
What ties The Sustainability Edge together is its unwavering belief that businesses not only can save the world but that they are, will be, and should be doing so. For a business interested in the practicalities of the market, this is environmentalism at its best. There is no hand-wringing, no sorrow, and no sentimentality. There is only a workable problem and a set of effective, doable solutions.
While The Sustainability Edge is likely to be most effective in the hands of someone who already understands fossil-fuel consumption as a problem, it also makes excellent points insofar as the increasing desire of the global customer base to buy green. In cases where the audience for this book is ambivalent about sustainability, this approach could easily tip them into action.
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