Product details

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Abstract

Golf over the years emerged as a global, cash-driven property development industry with nearly 4.4 million registered players in Europe alone in 2014. It developed as a business relying on a dense network of small- and medium-sized enterprises steeped in tradition. The combination of high growth and low brand value led to the golf industry lagging significantly behind other industries in terms of sustainability and social and environmental responsibility. With the downturn of 2008, things started to change, reluctantly at first then more proactively. Sustainability emerged as a hot topic on greens around the world. Bert Stadhouders knew more about it than anyone else. Freshly appointed in January 2014 as project manager for the Sustainable Golf Project, he was himself a dedicated golfer and a sustainability specialist. He had witnessed firsthand the disdain with which the sport was treating its sustainability footprint, as if oblivious to the CSR higher callings. In fact, beyond its green image and vocabulary, the game generated massive environmental and social challenges. Bert wondered how he could help drive sustainability to the top of the agenda in a reluctant industry steeped in conventions and history. Were the economic difficulties of the time a bounty or a boon for sustainability as a cause? To address sustainability on a global scale in golf, how could he factor in the huge differences between upcoming markets in Asia and more mature markets in Europe and the United States?

Time period

The events covered by this case took place in 2012-2015.

Geographical setting

Region:
World/global
Country:
The Netherlands

Featured company

Sustainable Golf Project
Employees:
2-10
Industry:
Travel and Leisure: Sports

About

Abstract

Golf over the years emerged as a global, cash-driven property development industry with nearly 4.4 million registered players in Europe alone in 2014. It developed as a business relying on a dense network of small- and medium-sized enterprises steeped in tradition. The combination of high growth and low brand value led to the golf industry lagging significantly behind other industries in terms of sustainability and social and environmental responsibility. With the downturn of 2008, things started to change, reluctantly at first then more proactively. Sustainability emerged as a hot topic on greens around the world. Bert Stadhouders knew more about it than anyone else. Freshly appointed in January 2014 as project manager for the Sustainable Golf Project, he was himself a dedicated golfer and a sustainability specialist. He had witnessed firsthand the disdain with which the sport was treating its sustainability footprint, as if oblivious to the CSR higher callings. In fact, beyond its green image and vocabulary, the game generated massive environmental and social challenges. Bert wondered how he could help drive sustainability to the top of the agenda in a reluctant industry steeped in conventions and history. Were the economic difficulties of the time a bounty or a boon for sustainability as a cause? To address sustainability on a global scale in golf, how could he factor in the huge differences between upcoming markets in Asia and more mature markets in Europe and the United States?

Settings

Time period

The events covered by this case took place in 2012-2015.

Geographical setting

Region:
World/global
Country:
The Netherlands

Featured company

Sustainable Golf Project
Employees:
2-10
Industry:
Travel and Leisure: Sports

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