Skip to Main Content
This paper analyzes and discusses the potential role of evolutionary theories in environmental innovation with emphasis on sustainability. The study focuses on the dynamic mechanisms driving the adaptation of products to their changing environments. As a result, a strategy, called Eco-evolution, is proposed. Eco-evolution is a strategy based on incremental innovation through re-examination of existent knowledge and technological trajectories. The strategy attempts the identification of lock-in of non-optimal technologies and sustainable alternatives, in order to outline the sustainable design and organizational horizons. To illustrate the practical application of the strategy, an example based on domestic refrigerators is included. The study concludes that eco-evolution is efficient when identifying non-optimal technological trajectories and sustainable options for innovation on the basis of existent knowledge.