International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE)

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Dual Degree Master of Business Administration/Master of Science in Environmental Science and Policy (MBA/ESP)


Graduate School of Management

Chief Instructor

David Correll

Second Reader

Ed Carr


The purpose of this report is to identify policy and practice gaps in resource consumption reduction in the United States, and doing so by using big box retailers as the case study industry.

Through reviewing the history of U.S. federal resource reduction policies, and standard industry practices for greening big box infrastructure, I explore how regulations on sustainability and consumption agree with the Porter Hypotheses. By using the Porter Hypothesis as a theoretical framework for the regulation of green infrastructure in big box retailers, I will identify gaps in both literature and industry practices that can be filled by following the avenues outlined in the Porter Hypothesis. Private industry’s responsibility to implement environmentally sound initiatives has been largely limited to federal policies that demand aggressive reductions in pollution and contamination. This report identifies where the presence of environmental regulation has spurred innovation, and where there are both policy and industry gaps, by using Wal-Mart, Target, and Costco retail stores as case study companies for comparison.



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