Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science

, Volume 39, Issue 1, pp 71-85

First online:

Market-oriented sustainability: a conceptual framework and propositions

  • Victoria L. CrittendenAffiliated withDepartment of Marketing, Boston College, Carroll School of Management Email author 
  • , William F. CrittendenAffiliated withCollege of Business Administration, Northeastern University
  • , Linda K. FerrellAffiliated withBusiness Ethics, University of New Mexico
  • , O. C. FerrellAffiliated withBusiness Ethics, University of New Mexico
  • , Christopher C. PinneyAffiliated withResearch and Policy, Center for Corporate Citizenship, Boston College, Carroll School of Management

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


Utilizing Resource-Advantage Theory as the underlying theoretical foundation and drawing on literature from a variety of disciplines, we develop a market-oriented sustainability framework. By incorporating sustainability into market orientation, the goal of strategic alignment of sustainability with marketing strategies is achieved to create a competitive advantage. Three constructs identified in the model are DNA, stakeholder involvement, and performance management. These three constructs are the drivers of sustainability. DNA is used as an extended metaphor to clarify and illustrate the workings of an organization and how sustainability may be implemented. This construct includes core ideology, dynamic capabilities, and societal engagement. The firm’s DNA is communicated to both internal and external stakeholders, and stakeholders’ concerns should be an influence on strategic marketing planning. Performance management is the third major construct in the model and includes corporate social performance and corporate financial performance metrics. Within the model explication, we offer propositions to support market-oriented sustainability research and provide directions for sustainability theory, research, and practice.


Sustainability Market orientation Corporate social responsiblity Marketing strategy Resource-Advantage Theory