Historically, sustainability has seldom been a prime consideration during development. This is due to commercialization of intellectual property being considered in purely economic terms in most innovation models. The description of commercialization has generally been limited to a few outcomes with economic growth and profit as the only considerations. This paper motivates for the description to be extended to incorporate other benefits such as environmental impact of the products and processes developed. Ways in which sustainability can be practically built into commercialization is described here as a three-pronged approach namely: the development of new sustainability products; building sustainability into the development of other products; and promoting sustainable practices in industry through creative problem solving. A model is proposed which looks at how Australia's research and development environment of cooperative research centres and industrial clusters could include knowledge from professionals with a 'triple bottom line' focus. These scientists, engineers and marketers would drive the three prongs above by facilitating cleaner production and eco-efficiency while being alert for new sustainability product opportunities. This paper discusses a few examples of opportunities and projects a country can, by using universities or centres as mediators, use to become incrementally more environmentally sustainable while gaining economic and other benefits.
|Keywords:||Sustainable Development, Cleaner Production, Innovation Models, Commercialization, Australia|
Lecturer, School of Applied Sciences and Engineering, Monash University, Churchill, Victoria, Australia
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