Resource title

Eco-labelling. A Socio-economic Analysis.

Resource image

image for OpenScout resource :: Eco-labelling. A Socio-economic Analysis.

Resource description

Due to the interdisciplinary nature of eco-labelling, the sense of the phenomenon itself is lost when studied in isolation. With this consideration, a balance of research between practical and theoretical approaches, between environmental sociology, environmental economics, international trade relations, consumer society, sustainability and marketing theory was explored. Eco-labelling has far-reaching ramifications in society, not just in the commercial relationship between producer and consumer, but in socio-cultural norms and values. It combines economic and social forces via the marketplace. The research of this paper focuses on 1) the socio-cultural aspects of eco-labelling, 2) the economic incentive which drives eco-labelling and 3) the global institutional structures which influence the eco-labelling dimension. Chapter 1 provides an overview of eco-labelling and introduces ecological modernization, the theoretical foundation of this paper. Chapter 2 is a summary of interviews which were conducted with eco-labelling managers around the world. Chapter 3 analyses the economic impact of eco-labelling, the effects on international trade and the environment, and how eco-labelling affects consumers and producers. Chapter 4 deals with the social context of eco-labelling, and the social paradigms of consumer society and sustainability, merging in the case of ecological modernization. Chapter 5 looks at opportunities and challenges to eco-labelling, and concrete recommendations with respect to the design of eco-labelling programmes are made. Eco-labelling is the only tool which functions within the conflicting social forces of consumer society and sustainability. As a market-based instrument for environmental management that functions within the producer - consumer relationship, eco-labelling can be seen as the ecological marketisation of consumer society. Best practices in eco-labelling rely on accepting the fundamental market principles combined with social trends. (authorĀ“s abstract)

Resource author

Wendy Williams

Resource publisher

Resource publish date

Resource language


Resource content type


Resource resource URL

Resource license

Adapt according to the license agreement. Always reference the original source and author.