Water Resources Management

, Volume 32, Issue 12, pp 3961–3978 | Cite as

Identifying Sustainability-Value Creation Drivers for a Company in the Water Industry Sector: an Empirical Study

  • Carlos Humberto Hurtado-JaramilloEmail author
  • Ming-Chuan Chiu
  • Núria Arimany-Serrat
  • Xavier Ferràs
  • Dulcinea Meijide


Research goal focused on to determine how companies in the water industry sector can address the challenge of embedding sustainability into the mainstream-business. The methodology was based on a documentary review, and an experimental implementation with a focus group which consists of decision-makers belong the company’s business scope. The process contributed at distinguishing between ‘sustainability values of global interest’ and ‘sustainability values within the business scope’ according to decision-makers’ perspective. As a result, a common framework based on sustainability values emerged, which is a useful tool to analyse value dissonances in supplier-client relationships, identify value perception gaps in the business strategy, and simultaneously drive the value creation processes at an inter-organizational level. The research sheds light on the importance of identifying and aligning expectations on sustainability’s contribution to the water business development, getting business actors involved closely in the implementation and execution of the Sustainable Development Goals and the Business Alliance for Water & Climate Change.


Business sustainability Value alignment Water sector Sustainability value Value dissonances 



We would like to thank Dr. Hsiao-Fan Wang distinguished Chair Professor of National Tsing Hua University (Taiwan) for her valuable comments that helped to improve the paper. The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Agència de Gestió d’Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca of the Generalitat de Catalunya and their contribution on this project (Industrial Doctorate Plan).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interests

The authors declare there is no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carlos Humberto Hurtado-Jaramillo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ming-Chuan Chiu
    • 2
  • Núria Arimany-Serrat
    • 3
  • Xavier Ferràs
    • 4
  • Dulcinea Meijide
    • 5
  1. 1.Universidad de VicTarragonaSpain
  2. 2.National Tsing Hua UniversityHsinchu CityTaiwan
  3. 3.Universidad de VicVicSpain
  4. 4.Dean of the Faculty of Business and CommunicationUniversidad de VicVicSpain
  5. 5.Sustainable Development Directorate, Suez SpainBarcelonaSpain

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