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The Automotive Industry in an Era of Eco-Austerity

Creating an Industry as if the Planet Mattered Peter E. Wells, Cardiff University, UK
This unique book seeks to combine economic analysis with the environmental research to arrive at a comprehensive understanding of the forces that shape change in the automotive industry. It eschews the usual focus on technologies, and gives more attention to the impact of change on the business models and strategies adopted by the vehicle manufacturers, the scope for new entrants, and the implications for policy-makers. This richly textured book concludes that the achievement of a sustainable automotive industry will not be possible with ‘one best way’, but that myriad technologies and business concepts, grounded in the distinct needs of different places and consumers, will be the basis of the future of mobility.
Extent: 224 pp
Hardback Price: £75.00 Web: £67.50
Publication Date: 2010
ISBN: 978 1 84844 967 1
Availability: In Stock
Paperback Price: £28.00 Web: £22.40
Publication Date: 2012
ISBN: 978 1 84980 623 7
Availability: In Stock
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  • Business and Management
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Management and Sustainability
  • Strategic Management
  • Economics and Finance
  • Industrial Economics
  • Transport
  • Environment
  • Climate Change
  • Corporate Social Responsibility
  • Environmental Management
  • Environmental Sociology
  • Transport
  • Urban and Regional Studies
  • Transport
The Automotive Industry in an Era of Eco-Austerity analyses the future prospects of the largest manufacturing sector in the world, the automotive industry, at a time of unprecedented global financial crisis and unrelenting environmental pressure.

This unique book seeks to combine economic analysis with the environmental research to arrive at a comprehensive understanding of the forces that shape change in the automotive industry. It eschews the usual focus on technologies, and gives more attention to the impact of change on the business models and strategies adopted by the vehicle manufacturers, the scope for new entrants, and the implications for policy-makers. This richly textured book concludes that the achievement of a sustainable automotive industry will not be possible with ‘one best way’, but that myriad technologies and business concepts, grounded in the distinct needs of different places and consumers, will be the basis of the future of mobility.

Drawing on a wealth of industry data by virtue of the authors’ record of many years researching the industry, this book will be invaluable to both students and researchers working within transport, industrial ecology, automobility, industrial policy, economics, regional development, sustainability, technology, and business models.
‘The book provides a thought-provoking read for anyone working in and around the automotive industry, particularly those who have an interest in how the traditional manufacturing approach can be better reconciles with sustainability objectives. It is both practical and accessible in its approach and style. . . With such flux in the automotive industry, this book should be seen as a timely contribution to the debate about the future of motorised personal mobility. Changing today’s well-established approach in the automotive sector is no easy task, as shifting the thinking of politicians and business leaders to embrace a new status quo will take a significant period of time, if it can ever be achieved. Wells does an excellent job at questioning today’s methods and setting the reader on a path towards considering different options, which makes this book a provocative read, well worth taking the time to consider.’
– Elizabeth Box, Journal of Transport Geography

‘A splendid analysis of how an automotive industry based on mass production has become an alien in our time – where diversity and personalised products and services have become the norm. Peter Wells presents an intriguing analysis of how the automotive industry can find ways forward and re-invent itself. A must read for all interested in sustainable mobility, as well as strategists in the automotive industry.’
– Arnold Tukker, TNO Built Environment and Geosciences, The Netherlands

‘The Automotive Industry in an Era of Eco-Austerity examines how we can achieve sustainable personal mobility, using a wide range of ideas and concepts. As the author stresses, this is not about the search for the best single technology for developing a sustainable car – it is much wider than that. Rather this book is about the fact that fundamental change is needed. Anyone interested in the auto industry should read it – much recommended.’
– David Bailey, Coventry University, UK

‘What the global automotive industry needs right now is ideas and this book is packed with them. Dr Wells is a master of turning a topic on its head in order to approach it from an angle that is both unique and enlightening. This book should be required reading for decision makers within the automakers, suppliers and governments, whose job it will be to shape the auto industry of tomorrow.’
– Gareth Owen Davies, AutomotiveWorld.com
Contents: Preface: The Era of Eco-Austerity 1. The Automotive Industry in Crisis: Economic and Environmental Failure 2. Diversity and the Industrial Ecology Metaphor 3. Contemporary Global Diversity and Cultures of Automobility 4. Emergent Diversity in the Global Automotive Industry: The Policy Agenda 5. Alternative Business Models as the Basis of a New Industrial Ecology of the Automobile 6. Enablers and Limiters of Change 7. Conclusions Bibliography Index