Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Strategic Sustainability:the Case of the New Zealand Energy Sector

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posted on 2021-11-09, 01:45 authored by Kramer, Sebastian

This thesis takes an in-depth look at the current sustainability practices of two specific energy companies in the New Zealand energy sector to develop a framework for how they might strategically implement sustainable practices. This is done through investigating and subsequently comparing New Zealand's and Germany's sustainability practices at both government and corporate level in order to draw conclusions on how New Zealand could improve in both sectors. In addition to the framework this thesis aims to clearly outline the difficulties companies might encounter when implementing sustainable practices, and the potential payoff they can expect from it. This thesis used a multiple case-study approach in combination with a comparative study to highlight the differences between each country's government and corporate approaches to sustainability. A framework of how to best integrate sustainability into corporations was developed using an extensive literature review of sustainability topics. Interviews were conducted with two New Zealand 'cases' using interviews as the primary means of data collection. In addition to this, extensive secondary data was used for both the New Zealand and German cases as well as for government policies. The findings of this thesis were diverse. The multiple cases-studies found vast differences within the corporations' implementation policies, as well as their intentions behind integrating sustainability practices. The comparative study found notable differences between both governments' sustainability policies, demonstrating a potential to learn from one another's policy implementations. Moreover, the findings illustrated differences between the New Zealand and German energy markets and government policies, and more importantly, how that could restrict each country's potential for sustainable development. The key practical implication of this thesis is that energy companies in New Zealand can employ the developed framework as a guideline on how to integrate sustainability into their companies. Furthermore, companies can use this thesis as a reference list for sustainability issues, as this paper combines many aspects of sustainability. On an academic level this thesis may well offer new insights into sustainable practice on both government and corporate level. This thesis is a valid contribution to the field of sustainability, especially in the context of the New Zealand energy sector. Furthermore, a comparative study between New Zealand and Germany in the context of sustainability on both government and corporate level has not been done before and as such has unique value.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Management Studies

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Management Studies

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

Victoria Management School


Cummings, Stephen