Building the future by looking to the past: examining research published on organizations and environment

Pratima Bansal, Jijun Gao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

101 Citations (Scopus)


Organizations and environment (O&E) researchers focus on either organizational outcomes or environmental outcomes. In this article, the authors argue that these are significantly different approaches to O&E research. The first aims to contribute to organization theory and performance; the latter aims to improve environmental performance. With a starting position that most research published in influential general management journals is of the organizational outcomes variety, the authors reviewed O&E research published from 1995 to 2005 to test this theory. The authors found, in fact, that most research is directed at environmental outcomes. This finding suggests that the most influential general management journals are receptive to environmental research that does not fit neatly into the organizational boxes. Yet, the authors also find that there is room for O&E research to have considerably more impact than there has been so far. This is a call for more high-quality O&E research in general management journals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)458-478
Number of pages21
JournalOrganization and Environment
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Environmental context
  • Environmental outcomes
  • Natural environment
  • Organization and environment
  • Organizational outcomes
  • Publications

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