The WEEE Challenge

Summary

Case Writers: Panfeng CHEN and Priya NARAYAN The case explains the nature of the new European directive on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment and its challenges/weaknesses. It explains how the directive will impact all business functions on a large scale. Companies need to understand what this impact will have on their product portfolio and market position in the different countries. They also need to decide whether they want to take a proactive stand or simply be a follower. Finally, the case gives a good feeling of how this European directive will impact how products are designed worldwide.

Teaching objectives

Companies do not operate in a vacuum. Environmental regulations (and more generally the concerns for sustainable business) are increasingly putting constraints on how companies do business or, alternatively, are offering new and challenging business opportunities. The WEEE directive is one of the most important environmental legislations enacted in history, and will profoundly impact the sector. The objective of the case is to show students how they can estimate the impact of such legislation on their business, and how to make informed decisions on what strategy to follow (proactive or passive).

Keywords
  • RD1104
  • AR2004
  • AR0405
  • WEEE DIRECTIVE
  • RECYCLING
  • BUSINESS IMPACT