We view the corporate world, which environmental groups often dismiss as "the problem," as an essential part of the solution. Our work particularly influences corporations because they possess the combination of skills, resources, agility, and motivation — profit — to address humanity's most pressing challenges.
Natural capitalism provides a comprehensive blueprint for this market-based transition.
Sustainable Practices Offer Corporations a Competitive Advantage
From its inception, Rocky Mountain Institute has sought "constructive engagement" with the corporate world. RMI's research and consulting experts work with a growing number of firms to help them find profitable ways to make their operations more sustainable and restorative.
In recent years we've pioneered a new model of social change to accelerate this corporate transformation. We discover highly efficient and sustainable practices that offer big competitive advantages, place them in the public domain, and work with one or more corporate "early adopters" to apply the practices with conspicuous success; rival firms are then forced to follow suit or lose market share. We have applied this technique with gratifying results in the automobile, electricity, water, and real-estate sectors, and are now targeting the semiconductor and oil industries.
Not surprisingly, given our focus on profitable environmental solutions, RMI functions as something of a small-business incubator. While we continue to pursue our nonprofit mission, when appropriate we have spun off certain units into the private sector, including:
- E-Source, the world's leading subscription service for information on energy-efficient technologies.
- Lightweight materials developer Fiberforge
- Plug-in hybrid developer Bright Automotive