Environmental Studies Program


Date of this Version

Summer 2011


This project consists of creating sustainable business plans for a group of diverse retail stores at the mall of SouthPointe Pavilions in Lincoln, Nebraska. A series of interviews took place with five managers at the businesses including: Scheels, Old Chicago, Bed Bath and Beyond, Von Maur, and Barnes and Noble. The questions were based around five different topics including: Technological, Environment, Socio-Cultural, Economic, and Public Policy. The Technological area includes processes with the product (or service) that occur before it arrives, during, and after it is sold. The Public Policy area includes if the business has an environmental policy, how it is communicated to staff, and how it is implemented. The Environment section is based on energy use, water use, and waste materials. The Socio-Cultural section focuses on the thoughts and attitudes regarding environmental change from customers, employees, and facilities workers. The last section of Economics includes incentives to environmental change, green promotions that the business may have implemented, and marketing or advertising strategies that include changes in sustainability. After the survey was completed, five separate business analyses were formulated to provide possible recommended improvements.

Along with each section, a relative score out of 10 was given to the section, which identified the areas that the business needed the most improvement and the areas that were doing seemingly well. A graph called the EcoSTEP Tool, which was developed by the Josyln Institute based out of Omaha, was also made for a visual representation of recommended improvements for each business. The business analyses were presented to each manager along with an explanation of the EcoSTEP Tool.

Modified EcoSTEP graph.pptx (128 kB)
EcoSTEP graphic

Thesis Poster.pptx (2710 kB)
Thesis Poster