Sustainability and the 6th wave of innovation
Sustainability is widely considered to be the 6th wave of innovation that will drive business cycles. This is primarily a result of finite resources that traditionally would have been considered and managed in a linear fashion where resources are extracted, altered, used and disposed of.
As we reach the planetary limits and resources become scarce prices are inevitably pushed upwards. On the other side we degrade existing resources through disposal, pollution and continued land use change. These pressures are coming to a head and is forcing businesses to think more holistically about resource use and introducing concepts such as circular economy and whole system design and analyses. Where businesses have previously been forced to adopt such concepts through regulatory and policy action, this will rapidly be replaced by internal efficiency and cost. These new dimensions will bring about fundamental changes in business operations and governance and become a key driver of macro business cycles.