The Eco-Innovation Challenge

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The Eco-Innovation Challenge

45% of European

companies in

manufacturing,

construction,

agriculture, water and

food services have

introduced at least one

eco-innovation in the

past two years.

12. The Eurobarometer

survey used the EIO definition

of eco-innovation

13. All references to

the water sector regarding

the Eurobarometer refer to

the Water supply; sewerage;

waste management

and remediation act.

42

50

40

30

20

10

0

Figure 4.4

Share of firms with innovations leading to reduced energy use

per unit output separated into industry and service sectors

Germany

Ireland

Portugal

Belgium

Luxemburg

Austria

Czech Republic

Finland

Croatia

4.2.2 | Focus on manufacturing, construction,

agriculture, water and food services

Sweden

France

Netherlands

Source: Eurostat 2010; own calculations Industry Services

The Eurobarometer survey 2011 (EC 2011b) investigated the behaviour, attitudes and

expectations of SMEs in five sectors towards the development and uptake of eco-innovation.

It specifically went into depth about material costs and import dependency12 .

According to the survey, 45% of European companies in manufacturing, construction,

agriculture, water and food services have introduced at least one eco-innovation in the

past two years. Process eco-innovation was the most popular type of eco-innovation

for companies in the agricultural, water13 and manufacturing sectors. Companies in the

construction sector were more likely to have brought a new product or service to the market

whereas companies in food services tended to implement higher amounts of organisational

innovation (Figure 4.5).

As regards eco-innovation investments, the agriculture and fishing sector has the most investments

related to eco-innovations (84%), followed by construction and manufacture (both

76%), food services (72%) and the water sector (69%). From all these in vest ments, companies

from agricultural (11%) and water (10%) reported the highest sha re of eco-innovation

Malta

Romania

Cyprus

Lithuania

Slovakia

Hungary

Italy

Poland

Latvia

Bulgaria

Estonia

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