Preface All the people living in this world at present are definitely responsible for preserving and purifying this world of ours. All the people are human beings and they have been given certain capabilities by nature and the biggest of them is that they can think and they can plan and they can analyze and they definitely can act and they can make changes and they can make things transform in a way they want to some extent and they need and they have the capability to feel the changes occurring in our environment. Everyone has the knowledge of the conditions which prevailed here in this world before us and everyone can very well see what conditions this world has at present. When both these things are known in a way which is the present picture, you can very well analyze and change; see that how this world has changed and how the changes have affected the living standards and what impacts our environment has beard due to these changes. One can analyze and now it is better for us to say that everyone has analyzed and everyone knows that on one hand the living standards and the quality of the lives people are living, have improved in a dramatic way and everything has improved. On the other hand it is seen that while moving towards betterment and advancing towards more and more professionalism and in the race of meeting the idealism, people have started to damage the environment and nature and this damage and harm which is still being given to the environment only due to us cannot be reversed and there is no possibility that these changes may be overcome. The only possibility is that those who have devised such processes for the betterment of the people, those who do such actions and those who involve in certain activities which result in the harmful effects towards environment and only those people can try and work in different directions to limit them, people can try to look for new ways and they can definitely try to improve our present systems so that the environment of all of us which is responsible for the better living conditions in this world free of cost, could be preserved. This study will discuss in detail all the aspects of this scenario. It will be tried that this study works best to light up all the directions which are responsible for the damage and it will be tried to figure out the ways for betterment. Abstract Looking the preface of this study, there is need to further go into the details and before going into the bird’s eye view of the details for this study, there is a need to try to mention and focus on the direction in which this study will be moving and so it is the job and it is must that there is a try to give our full attention to the field we belong. Here in this context, I must disclose that the try is being made to look into this matter of damages to the environment and the causes of it and afterwards the solutions of it in the context of industry. The need is basically to handle the matter with the knowledge and the direction of the mechanical processes and the mechanical systems which are underway in use all over the world. It will be illuminated that how this mechanical manufacturing is responsible for the damages to the environment. How mechanical manufacturing is playing its part in the world’s betterment. Then will be seen and there will be made tries to figure out that what sort of restrictions and plans for the betterment of the situation are present in the world for the mechanical manufacturers and the processes and systems related to it. After it a place will be seen which will allow us make us able to rate and study the different fields and different countries in general and account them on the basis of the laws and everything present for them to follow and reside by. While doing so, a clear idea will be automatically established that what is the prevailing situation and what needs to be done. There I will be able to discuss, devise and show that following such and such actions there can be brought certain following changes which will play an important role for the betterment. This is going to be the complete study which will have in it the complete discussion of the points discussed above and pre-understanding will also be a part where it will be felt necessary. Chapter 1 Introduction 1.1: This chapter 1 is basically going to focus on the introduction of the whole research and will introduce the directions in which our whole discussion will move on. In this context there will be made declarations which make us to design the whole theory of this research and the scenario which guides us that what is must to be tried to make the most out of this research. What are the main directions and what are the main areas of our focus. Actually this whole research is going to cover the use of environmental management science and systems related to it in the whole of the United Kingdom and uncover the prevailing situation. The extent of the usage and reasons which are responsible for the use of the management and regulatory systems which are based on the ISO14000 family and the EMAS will be discussed. On the other hand it will be seen that why companies opt out to avoid; from playing their part for the betterment of the environment, by avoiding the use of environmental management systems. There will be discussions on the calculations based on the facts which will be gathered by making studies of the present systems of management which are in use (1). There will be recommendations at the end of the study and there will be given a complete plan for the betterment of the systems and there will be time frame calculations which will be needed for the implementation of the plans and the pros and cons of the situation. Explanation 1.2: Before starting off to do a research and before going into the brief and explanatory details of any matter, as a matter of convention which is followed in every research and every paper which is written for any purpose, there will be provided introduction and a must talk of the things of general understanding which will afterwards slowly converge towards the specific topic of ours. This design greatly helps to improve the quality of the paper and promote it among the people of general nature having general knowledge and it also helps to develop the interest of the common people in the research paper which anyone is going to go through. It is very important to tell the readers that what they are going to see in some research paper and why they should take time to study it and why it is useful for them. Seeing this need, I have to talk of all the stairs which will be climbing in the whole of the research (2). The environmental management systems have been developed solely to protect the environment from any harm and keep the environment in its present state. Although it is not possible that we stop harming the environment because our life has become completely dependent on certain systems which always produce harm to the environment to certain degrees that vary from system to system and they cannot be avoided. From example talking generally, the transport systems of the modern world produce smoke and pollute the atmosphere and eventually harm the environment. This is a fact that the environment cannot be completely preserved as it is. Seeing the above discussion, a try to talk, discuss and find the ways for the betterment and try to do as much good as we can. We can try to minimize the harm basically and try to preserve the nature by finding the ways which lead to the lesser pollution of environment. In this context, there have been done many works, there have been done experiments by the scientists and many environmental technicians have spent their complete lives in search of the facts about atmosphere and the factors and materials which lead to the effect of damage to the nature. The findings of the studies and the research done in this field led to many new laws and practices which were made applicable by the regulatory authorities which are basically governed by the governments and work for the betterment of the whole world. Project Objectives 1.3: This project is basically meant to search for the environment friendly resources being in action in the world and discuss the need for them, discuss the status of their availability, discuss their nature, explain them, gather information about the present scenario and in this context, evaluate and compare different regions and countries on the basis of environment friendly technology. The technological part will mainly focus on the environmental management systems in the terms of ISO 14001 and the EMAS. We will try to throw light on the need for them in the beginning. We will try to elaborate that where there is a will, there is a way. Where people need to change their systems for the betterment of the whole world, there are ways and there are applicable and available systems present in the market, making use of which, they can very well perform their task and do their job for the betterment of the whole scenario and play their role for a better tomorrow. • We will try to elaborate the need of EMS • We will try to elaborate the transformation of systems according to ISO 14001 • We will try to elaborate that how the effectiveness can be increased by adding EMAS to ISO 14001 • We will search for facts and figures in the industries • We will try to stress upon the airline industry because they are responsible for the major share of pollution in the atmosphere • We will throw light on the fact that there is no immediate solution • We will tell that termination of hazardous systems is impossible • We try to find out future course of action for further assistance and better tomorrow (3) Bending towards Topic 1.4: The main changes in the atmosphere of the earth and the environment of the world are due to certain specific factors and they are now known to almost everyone. One of them is the climate change. The change in the climate of the whole planet which is given the name of global warming due the rise in the overall temperature of the earth calculated every year and compared with the data of the last year; is making the survival of living things on this planet more and more difficult. It is posing a serious threat to the life of human beings, animals, plants and trees and all other living organisms. When we say that the temperature is becoming high each year, we mean that the temperature drop in different seasons each year is changing and the temperature drop does not takes a minimum value as it used to take in the previous years. The temperature rise in the summer season is also increasing every year. The climate of this planet earth is not predictable and there is no pre-calculation of it as it is a very complex system and no one in this world has got the knowledge to completely understand and predict what is going to happen. When there is a system as complex as the system of climate change, how is it possible for us to handle it and make it work in our own way. Seeing all this, we have to look for alternative sources of information and figure out certain possible causes of the change in temperature which are now known long since. The primary and secondary causes of global warming are the exhausts from the industry and automobiles and basically the burning of hydrocarbons and expulsion of heat to the environment is the cause of global warming. We cannot stop global warming because our life is now not possible without the burning of fuels and without the use of automobiles or without the running of industries. In such a scenario, we step ahead further and look for the factors which can be applied to the running processes to minimize their effects on the environment. There is also another factor which leads to the change of climate every year and that is the pollution of the atmosphere. The atmosphere which is present above the world has a certain composition and that composition is responsible for certain special effects which this atmosphere produces and as an example, it saves us from many harmful effects of the rays from the sun and also it provides us with a good quality air to breathe in which is rich in oxygen. When the poisonous gases are expelled into the air and the atmosphere, the original composition of the atmosphere gets changed and due to the chemical reactions these poisonous gases with the atmosphere, the whole of the atmosphere gets polluted and becomes poisonous therefore damaging the nature and the quality of life. Major Important Processes 1.5: There are many important processes which are the main contributors of all the damage to the environment. One of them is the airplane industry. The air traffic is increasing day by day and the airplanes fly through the air to transport the people and they pose serious threats to the environment. This is because the fuel which is burned inside the engines of the aircrafts expels many gases at high pressure into the air and these gases pollute the environment by reacting with the gases present in the air. The smoke which is ejected has also got a very temperature and then we see that the atmosphere has to nullify that high temperature and slowly its own temperature rises a little with time. It is known that the air transport is responsible complete two percent shares of the total carbon dioxide emissions annually. This is a big figure and we also know that carbon dioxide is not at all good for health. Known from the past several years, increase in air traffic each year causes a total increase of three to four percent in the carbon dioxide emissions each year. Studies show that in the United Kingdom, air traffic is responsible for a total of nine percent of the carbon dioxide emissions. On the other hand the whole of the industry works for the betterment of the mankind and we also know that industrial processes in general need high temperatures and high pressures for the tasks of theirs to be completed. These high temperatures and high pressures are attained by the burning of fuels of different types. It is also a common understanding that whenever and wherever combustion is done, the smoke is created, heat is used, heat is expelled to the atmosphere and also the gases and smoke is expelled into the atmosphere. These processes which are discussed also result in the pollution and damage the atmosphere. Steps Taken 1.6: The general trend which has been adopted by now is that these processes could not be stopped and there cannot be a full stop to the whole scenario of pollution. Therefore, for the betterment of the situation there are ideas established and experimentally proven ways are found by which these emissions can be minimized and the pollution rate can be lowered. These processes give a clear call to the mechanical manufacturers and the environmental control specialists. With the passage of time and with the calculations done in past years, certain regulations have been made and certain resolutions have been passed which ask for the betterment of the systems and they work for the inspirational adoption of systems which are environment friendly and which make the processes of daily use less poisonous for the environment. In these terms we can say that there have been developed by now the systems which control and govern the rate of pollution to the atmosphere by making checks on the smoke emitted and ensure the making of the engines and the machinery more and more efficient and effective. More and more efficiency makes the machinery and the engines to do the same job for lesser expenditure of fuel and the good efficiency makes the equipment to work with the same force in lesser time and lesser requirement of their use. Nomenclature 1.7: When to look into the matter with deep concerns and see what is available and what is being done in this field, we come to know about many names and we some across reading many terms and listening to many talks on certain specific terms which directly deal with many new and old versions of the ideas of the related topics to our research. We see that there are many things being done and many steps being taken in this field of environmental management. There are institutions around the world where the main focus in only on this field of science and there are people who spend hours daily studying and searching for new and new facts related to the preservation of the environment and they also come to know many new things. These new things which are found by them are put into discussions which are sometime so long that they need deep concern and dedication of the people for their successful appreciation. These findings lead the authorities to make changes to the systems and bring new ideas into the market for practice. When such raw ideas and rough guesses gain importance and gather attention, they also get the names and they become popular. When anything is popular or anything is in practice, people talk about it; the talk is reserved to those people who generally know the sense of the matter and the people who generally follow the happenings in the field. For the people who are not well aware of the minor details of such advancements, they need to be explained and there is always a need for explanation till a chapter is closed. Some terms are seen in the newspaper or sometimes heard from people, which directly relate to the topic of ours and they are our main focus and we have to deal with them in the whole of this research paper and so we need to name them, explain them and discuss them before discussing anything related them. We see there are names like ISO 14000, ISO 14001, EMS, EMAS, ecological footprint, GDP etc. ISO 14000 1.7.1: This term is not a term of English or any other language and so it is not understandable generally. ISO 14000 refers to as the name given to a collection or a family of standards which directly deal with the management of systems of environmental benefit. ISO 14000 has a series of standards in it which make the working of the systems bend in accordance with the rules of environmental management. There are many more sides of the aspect and there are many more packages which are part of the ISO 14000 family of standards. There are different packages which allow different companies and industries to choose the best suitable for them and play their role for the betterment of environmental conditions. The concept of environmental management system dates back to 1990s and in some ways dates back to early 70’s, which tells us that it is somehow very important and has been in discussion long since. There are the following packages in the ISO 14000 family which are currently available for adoption by the companies: • ISO 14001 Environmental management systems—Requirements with guidance for use • ISO 14004 Environmental management systems—General guidelines on principles, systems and support techniques • ISO 14015 Environmental assessment of sites and organizations • ISO 14020 series (14020 to 14025) Environmental labels and declarations • ISO 14030 discusses post production environmental assessment • ISO 14031 evaluation of Environmental performance —Guidelines • ISO 14040 series (14040 to 14049), Life Cycle Assessment, LCA, discusses pre-production planning and environment goal setting. • ISO 14050 terms and definitions. • ISO 14062 discusses making improvements to environmental impact goals. • ISO 14063 the Environmental communication, and it provides basically Guidelines and examples • ISO 14064 Measuring, quantifying, and reducing Greenhouse Gas emissions. • ISO 19011 is the one which is meant to specify single audit protocol for both the ISO 14000 and ISO 9000 series standards together. (5) ISO 14001 1.7.2: ISO 14000 has as a most important part which is most notable, the ISO14001 and this is the most used standard in industries. It basically provides companies and industries with the steps to follow and ideas to take these steps, consequently advancing towards a better environmental management system. ISO 14001 is not at all itself an environmental management system and also it is not something which can directly control everything. It is basically a planner and a guide for the people interested in managing their whole setup according to the laws and governance of environmental management. It has the following steps, methodology or principles, following which every company and industry can transform their systems: Plan Prior to anything else, even prior to the implementation of this system of ISO 14001, there are made certain studies which suggest and reflect the nature of the problems and nature of the needs. This is sometimes also given the name of gap analysis. It basically tells that what is the present condition, what could be the condition in the normal case, is it necessary to implement some sort of a system, is the system in need of ISO 14001 or not and many other questions like this are answered in this first phase. There are also discussed and catered the possible future processes and possible future needs. Do In this phase or step, the system of ISO 14001 is applied and implemented and all the working related to this system is done in order to bring the whole system in line with the principles of ISO 14001 design and then making it ready for operation. Check After the implementation and start of the working of the ISO 14001 system, there is a need to check the smooth sailing of the system and in this process, the checks are applied and the reports are put up. The whole system is carefully examined and calculations are made for the fair and complete detailed examination because it is very necessary that you must know how your experiment is going. Act In this phase basically, the need of improvement found out during checking is applied and actions are taken to make the system work correctly as told by the authorities who designed the system. The checks in most of the cases point out the fields and directions where there are needs of necessary actions. Continual Improvement The whole processes of utilization of ISO 14001’s governance is a continual improvement process which always needs to be improved for better results. The better results may be in terms of the better system for the environment or better for the management. (6) Based on these steps, ISO 14001 allows a company or industrial unit to make changes to their system and become a part of the campaign and follow the directions of the regulatory authorities to play their part in the environmental management and try to protect the environment. They basically try to lower their percentage and their share of damage to the environment by transforming their system. ISO 14001 is a complete package and it is not a machine to buy or it is not a care taker of the system. It has a complete package in it in a sense that it has been designed keeping in mind all the necessities and all the needs which arise in the way, when companies are establishing or modifying their systems according to the guidelines of ISO 14001. It has got the following assistances with it: • ISO 14001 Consultancy • ISO 14001 Software • ISO 14001 Environmental Aspect Database (7) This complete package is responsible for making the complete system work in an environment which is idealized in the terms of environmental management. In the year 2008 there were estimated one lac and eighty eight companies to be present from one hundred and fifty five countries which were certified to be ISO 14001 compliant (8) EMS 1.7.3: EMS is basically an abbreviation and it refers to Environmental Management System. Environmental management systems are the systems which are responsible for the monitoring of data and the monitoring of functions of a bigger system and controlling it in a way which is in accordance with the necessary conditions that environment is not much affected by the working of some system. EMSs are playing an important role for the betterment of the systems all over the world and they have done a good job since they are in practice. There is an adoption of such systems in the industries and the companies which want to work and meet their needs keeping in view the environmental hazards their systems can pose to the atmosphere and those who want their systems to be environment friendly. This is a common understanding that such systems were introduced based on this cause and they are in practice only due to this issue. The basic thing which is necessary for the understanding of the need of such a system is the awareness to the importance of good environment. The awareness is present among the people who have awareness of good quality of life and those who know that how hazardous their systems could be for the environment. Working of EMS Environmental management systems are the systems which basically control the amount of production of emissions and the amount of certain specific gases in the emission. There are different types of checks which are applied and there are different types of extra processes added to the normal processes required for the operational needs to make the system as a whole work in a state where there lesser damage to the environment. Whenever such checks are made a part of the general processes, there is a lesser threat posed to the environment. Here, the complete working and technological details of the environmental management systems seems out scope and so not discussed in minor details. The overview is that they are not part of the infrastructure and they are applied separately to control the pollution rate and they have become common over a passage of time and also due to the regulation of the governments who have stressed upon the use of such systems and also there are international laws which have to be followed while working for anything in any context. As a result of such initiatives and such steps, we can very well say that the world has advanced and the world has done so much up till now to save the environment and there is also much more to do and there are also new directions in which there must be an advancement now. EMAS 1.7.4: Eco Management and Audit Scheme is a voluntary environmental management system which was set by the United Kingdom seeing the need for it for the better future of environment in general and the humanity in particular. EMAS is not a physical system or a working machine as it is most of the times confused with EMS. EMAS is a thing very similar to ISO. EMAS is sometimes referred to as an improved version of ISO 14001 and it is true to some extent. Basically EMAS is also a system like ISO 14001 which regulates and governs the use of environmental management systems. Basically we must understand; what was the need of introducing a system which already has a similar system in working condition in the practical world and what made the people in charge to move ahead. EMAS was introduced to remove the shortcomings which were felt in the existing system of ISO 14001. EMAS is now being used and practiced in conjunction with the old prevailing system of ISO 14001. These systems are not necessary for anyone to adopt and they are completely voluntarily adopted. EMAS when combines with ISO 14001, they give a direction of working which is much more effective and much more improved compared with the extent of good which can be achieved by ISO 14001 alone. EMAS also brings with it the compliance with the environmental legislation and there is a strict control of government regulations which is absent in ISO 14001. EMAS also demands a stronger involvement of the employees which is a very necessary action and it produces far better results (9). There are similar packages available in the market and they are also used like the ISO 9000. They are all designed and formulated for the betterment of the systems and the betterment of the environment. They basically give the chance of managing the system according to the requirements and needs in a somehow better organized way and they are programmed and tested in such a way that they can perform this task in a very good way. The basic difference which is present between simple ISO 14001 and the conjunction of EMAS with the ISO 14001 is that EMAS demands much more strictness within the system and asks for more firm grip over the whole scenario. It demands that there should be a tight stick to the system and there should be a complete following of the principles which govern the working of the system. EMAS III This is the latest version of EMAS which is available and applicable now and this was brought in to improve the standard of the present EMAS and this also tells us one thing more very easily that people are busy working for the betterment of the situation of the world in terms of the environmental management systems. There were added certain core indicators which were to be reported by the organizations and the purpose of it was the complete and inside out consideration of the all the environmental effects. Organizations are bound to report thoroughly on each environmental effect unless on anyone effect they are able to justify that why it is possible to neglect it. The indicators are: • Efficiency of energy in the context that consumption of total energy annually with the calculated percentage of total energy which is renewable • Efficiency of material in terms of the annual mass flow rate for different materials • Annual consumption of water • Annual production of waste and the waste which is somehow hazardous • Use of land or biodiversity • Annual emission of the bio gases and the emission of air annually (10) There are different views about the efficiency of new core indicators throughout the world and there are companies and institutes who are not satisfied and according to them, these core indicators does play their part in fully describing the environmental aspects of everything and they have demanded for the renewal of it. Here is an example of how to formulate the core indicators and present it: (11) EMAS Easy This is another side of the EMAS and this EMAS Easy is specially designed for places where it is hard to implement the EMAS. This is a different and simple design however very sophisticated one for smaller organizations and companies. This is designed for the SMEs which are basically the small and medium sized organizations. SMEs get themselves registered for this procedure and system which is designed keeping in view and meeting all the needs which are necessary to meet the standards of EMS for ISO 14001 and EMAS. This is based on the method named as Ecomapping. The diagrams are made of the whole scenario and the working is done on them and designs are made. The main and important dictations of EMAS easy are the following: 1. Group dynamic 2. Sharing best practices 3. Direct implementation and practice 4. Crossed internal audits 5. Cost sharing and reduction (12) BS 8555 1.7.5: This is a British standard which is known since the year 2003 when it got published and it basically important because it breaks the implementation of EMAS and ISO 14001 into several steps which count to six and they are easy. These were some important things which were to be discussed before going further into the research (13). Chapter 2 Critical Analysis of the situation 2.1: Importance of Implementing an Environmental Management System 2.1.1: The factors like the market of today, globalization of the world and the increasing expenditures, etc, compel companies and organizations to work hard on dayly basis to improve the profitability, effectiveness and efficiency. Basically the implementation of some management system of any kind is known to always make the companies and industries so powerful that they can take care of the above explained factors in a better way. They can very easily cope up with all the situations they have to face and they will definitely find it easy for them to take out a solution in a somehow programmed way rather than waiting for debacle and tehn applying the hit and trial method. When we see the things in this scenario, we come to know that there is always a need for change and there is room always available to improve upon. If the room for change or the need of improvement is not visible, there is a very low probability that the company can grow or maintain the standard because the situations and the outside environments change and they definitely change very frequently and the companies have to keep a record of all the changes in the market for their own betterment. Such records can be kept easily and the rooms for change and the needs for improvement could be very well identified whenver the working is being done while being in a system which is designed so as to make the companies benefit from it. Also, the systems available in the market have been developed after a deep research they can be used as powerful tools for combating the whole dramatic situation of the market which is always present. (14) By Product 2.1.2: On the other hand we see that there are also other side benefits of working in a systematic environment and the biggest of them is the one which is the topic and goal of our study in this dissertation. Seeing the benefits of the management systems and closely looking at the benefits of the these systems which other companies are getting and then seeing towards the environmental benefits which such systems promise to deliver; the need of them and the likeness for them and eventually the probability of their becoming public, all get raised. Here we can say that for those who do not take deep interest in the scenario of doing something for the betterment of environment for others, there is a hope that they can also manage their own working in a far better way and they can get very effective and efficient systems as a promise by the implementation of the environmental management systems. The risks which are always involved and always try to play their part in the streamlined working environment of some company can also be reduced by making use of the environmental management systems and we can very well say that environmental management systems and the packages or the systems which are available are complete in every aspect and they must be used for the purpose of betterment at individual industrial level and the collective industrial level for the protection of environment from bad effects of something good being done. (15) A short Comparison of ISO 14001 and 9001 2.2: ISO 14001- Environmental Management Systems-An Overview of the Requirements with Guidance for Use (16) The figure shown above is basically showing the data which is basically the comparison between different countries in different years for the environmental management systems. It is very clearly visible that the need for environmental management systems is increasing in most of the cases and this because of the reason that the EMS does not only protects the environment and preserves it in its present form but also the working of the companies which get established in under the shadow of such systems is far better than those working in primitive atmosphere. ISO 9001- Environmental Management System- Overview of Requirements with Guidance for Use (17) This figure is basically depicting and throwing light on the ISO 9001 certified systems and it is telling us that it is more needed by the people in the market today and there are many reasons behind it which are not the subject of this study but the biggest reason is the more generic nature of the program and the feasibility of it. ISO 14001- World Annual Growth in Percentage (%) (18) Seeing this figure, we get a general idea of the growth of the ISO 14001 system globally and annualy. This is clear that there are some hurdles in its way which are restricting its use to a level which is basically required and which was basically thought of while it was being designed. ISO 9001- World Annual Growth in Percentage (%) (19) This figure is showing the annual growth of the ISO 9001 certified systems. This was basically a deep insight into the matter with the approach of practice. We analyzed the whole world and tried to figure out that how different countries are heading towards the implementation of the environmental management systems and how different systems are differently popular. Chapter 3 To innumerate where we stand and what we have got up till now from all the discussion made in the first two chapters and seeing ahead towards the new areas which were left for obvious reasons to be explained later, we try here to compromise on an explanation of overall understanding and the new concepts developed and new steps and procedures searched for a better system of EMS with the use of EMAS and ISO 14001. Explanation 3.1: Legal requirement 3.1.1: This is something really necessary that the person solely responsible for anything must look for the need first and then try to step further as it is not the case in some of the works but it is a thing which is required always and everywhere doing everything. So this can be defined in a manner which is specifically based on this particular discussion of ours and remains closely bended towards the topic. The intent of this element is to identify the environmental legal and other requirements that pertain to its operations and activities so that every organization can make it sure and guarantee that they are taken into account in the EMS. While doing so there is something more to say that every organization must also determine how these requirements apply to the significant aspects. Multinational companies are advised to take extra care to account for changes between different countries. Objectives, Targets, and Programs 3.1.2: Before the start of anything there is a need to work out the expected future according to the design you are seeing to be implemented and if the future seems bright, you go for it and otherwise you turn your decision down. Such a need is also catered in the designing of an EMS because there are well researched ideas which collectively make the people in charge to make a good EMS. This specific part tells that there must be some process that ensures that the objectives and targets are consistent with the policy and this definitely includes the promises and commitments to compliance with some legal and other requirements, continual improvement, and prevention of pollution. Also, the organization must take into consideration significant aspects, legal and other requirements, views of interested parties, and technological, financial, and business matters, issues and related interests when it is about to decide what it wishes to achieve and accomplish as an objective. The targets and objectives always need to exist and they are expected to be present at all levels and functions of any organization, and they should also be measurable, where practicable. Requirements for Implementation 3.1.3: When there is a new implementation going on and the process of change is being brought up for the sole reason of betterment, the new system which is chosen is expected by the companies; and people who try to move into that system expect the system to produce valuable results and deliver at least as much as it is expected to deliver. For the smooth sailing of a ship as there are many measures to be taken, in the same manner every system has some specific requirements which if not fulfilled, the system may not deliver the results as expected or as promised by the makers and designers of the system. This part is going to throw light on this fact and elaborate what is basically required. Structure and responsibility The top management of any company is always expected to make sure that resources are available so that the EMS may be implemented, improved and maintained. The main resources which do play a role most of the times include the human resources, structure of organization, technological and financial resources and there are many others as required or as needed. Basically the roles and responsibilities, duties and authorities must always be defined, written, documented and communicated as a must. Every organization and every company must highlight the Management Representative who is meant to be responsible to oversee and manage the EMS and all the related issues and report to management on its working and smooth operation. This person has basically to make sure that the EMS is introduced and established, implemented in a good way and maintained as it needs be in a consistent way with ISO 14001, and also has to report to the top management and brief them on the performance and output of the system including all types of recommendations for change and improvement. Competence, Training, and Awareness The key point or you can say the basic and the foremost point in this element is always to ensure that people performing those tasks which definitely have or may have significant and remarkable impact on the environment and relate to the legal and other requirements are competent to do such tasks and perform certain duties in this regard. Competence is always ensured through appropriate education, training in that particular style or experience in the respective field. The organization always needs to identify and fine out training needs as they relate and correspond to the EMS, the significant and beneficial aspects, and all the legal and other requirements and make sure such training is provided and the records of it are to be maintained. Some procedure is required and needed that makes sure that such persons are well aware of the need to move on with all EMS procedures and requirements and what they specifically need to do so; the significant and popular aspects and the legal and other requirements associated and connected with their respective responsibilities and for what reason improved performance is beneficial and important; and the consequences of not following these procedures and requirements. In addition to the knowledge which is job-specific, it is expected that all personnel within the EMS, including contractors; have general awareness on items such as the policy and emergency response. Communications Procedures are always required for both internal and external communications. Basically ISO 14001 involves a methodology which only requires procedures, and it allows the organizations and companies to decide for themselves the degrees of openness and disclosures of information. There is never found any hard and fast rule and actually whatever the decision is in the terms of disclosure, a record must always be kept for the whole decision making process. There is a specific requirement that the organization considers external communications about its significant environmental aspects and records its decision. For internal communications, the procedure needs to describe how it is done among the levels of the organization. For external communications, it has to describe how external communications are received, documented, and a response provided. Documentation This requirement ensures that the organization has documented the system in either electronic or paper form such that it addresses the elements of the standard, describes how the organization conforms to each element, and provides direction to related documentation. Not all ISO 14001-required procedures need to be documented, as long as the system requirements can be verified. However, documentation must be provided such that enough is available to ensure the effective planning, operation, and control of processes related to the significant aspects, and to demonstrate conformance to ISO 14001. Such documentation at a minimum includes policy, objectives and targets, a definition of the scope of the EMS, and other main elements. Control of Documents The organization is required to control documents, such as system procedures and work instructions, to ensure that current versions are distributed and obsolete versions are 4 removed from the system. There is a requirement for a document control procedure that ensures documents are approved prior to use, are reviewed and updated as necessary, changes to versions are identified, that the current versions are available at points of use, that they are legible, identifiable, and that obsolete ones are so noted to avoid unintended use. It is acceptable to use documents of internal origin in the EMS, but those must be identified as being essential to the EMS and their distribution controlled. Operational Control For this element, critical functions related to the policy, significant aspects, the legal and other requirements, and objectives and targets are identified and procedures and work instructions are required to ensure proper execution of activities. Requirements for communicating applicable system requirements to contractors also need to be addressed in these procedures. The required procedures need to provide instruction such that the organization conforms to the policy, objectives and targets, the legal and other requirements, and addresses any impacts from significant aspects. Which procedures are needed can be determined by review of the significant aspects, objects and targets, the legal and other requirements, and policy and then deciding what must be put into procedure and documented to ensure that deviations from planned arrangements do not occur. In regard to the contractors, the organization will need to establish procedures related to the significant aspects the legal and other requirements, of the goods and services it uses, and communicating the relevant elements of those procedures to the suppliers and contractors. Emergency Preparedness and response Although typically addressed through conventional emergency response plans, this element also requires that a process exist for actually identifying the potential emergencies, in addition to planning and mitigating them. Emergency incidents include those that may not be regulated, but may still cause significant impact as defined by the organization. As part of continual improvement, it is required that the organization not only responds to emergency situations, but also reviews the emergency procedures and make improvements as necessary. This may involve periodic testing of emergency procedures, if practicable. Requirements for Checking Monitoring and Measurement In order to properly manage the system, measurements must be taken of its performance to provide data for action. Procedures are required describing how the organization will monitor and measure key parameters of operations. These parameters relate to the operations that can have significant impacts, to monitor performance towards the objectives and targets, and to monitor conformance to the legal and other requirements and other EMS requirements. Equipment related to environmental measurements, such as temperature and pH meters and pressure gauges, must be calibrated according to procedures, and records maintained. Evaluation of Compliance Legal compliances should be evaluated regularly and organization should be able to demonstrate that this has been completed. The standard does not however, state that the laws must be complied with, only that they are to be evaluated, the organization therefore will not lose its certification if it does not meet individual laws as long as effort has been made to do so. This is a weakness as organizations do not have complied with laws and therefore could have significant areas of adverse environmental impact which are not being properly addressed. Non-conformances, Corrective and Preventive Action This element requires procedures for acting on non-conformances identified in the system, including corrective and preventive action. A non-conformance is a situation where the actual condition is not in accordance with planned conditions. Someone not following a procedure, a regulatory non-compliance, or an incident, is all examples of possible systemic non-conformances. Non-conformances may be identified through audits, monitoring and measurement, and communications. The intent is to correct the system flaws by addressing root causes, rather than just fixing the immediate incident only. The standard also requires that trends in corrective actions be evaluated to see if deeper-rooted preventive actions can also be implemented. The procedure needs to make sure the non-conformances are not only first addressed to mitigate environmental impact; but that further investigation occurs to determine their cause, and action taken to avoid it happening again. Preventive actions would then be those actions resulting from an evaluation as to why nonconformities are occurring and taking action to prevent their recurrence. The standard states that the corrective action is appropriate to the magnitude of the problem and the impacts encountered; to avoid either over-compensating or under-compensating for a problem. The organization must record the results of corrective actions taken, and must also review the effectiveness of actions taken. Control of Records Records are expected to exist to serve as verification of the system operating and the organization’s conformance to the standard and its own EMS requirements. Procedures in this element are required for the maintenance of records, and specifically require that records are identifiable, retrievable, safely stored, and legible, retained as appropriate, and traceable. Internal Audit ISO 14001 requires that the system provide for internal audits. This procedure could include methodologies, schedules, checklists and forms, and processes used to conduct the audits. The purpose of this audit is to determine whether the system conforms to the requirements of ISO 14001 and the organization’s own EMS detailed requirements, and if the EMS has been properly implemented and maintained. The procedure for internal audits has to address responsibilities and requirements for planning and executing the audits, reporting results, and what records will be generated (and maintained in accordance with 4.5.4). The procedures also address determination of audit scope, how often they will be conducted, and specifically how they will be done. Auditors need to be selected such that it ensures objectivity and impartiality of the audit process. Management Review This element requires that periodically, top management will review the EMS to ensure it is operating as planned, and is suitable, adequate, and effective. The organization needs to ensure that in the review: results of internal audits (EMS and compliance); external communications; environmental performance; status on objectives and targets; status of corrective and preventive actions; follow up on actions from prior management reviews; and changing conditions or situations; and recommendations for improvement are all discussed. Conclusion of chapter 3.2: The whole of the chapter 3 above has been used as a space to complete the process which was necessary to be uncovered in this research and I think the things, systems, methods, workings and everything discussed is now sufficient to create a complete and deep sense of what is basically going on in here. The discussion which was started in the chapter 2 gave a way to move ahead into the scenario and deeply look into the matter with complete prior knowledge which was necessary. This chapter 3 has talked of the same things almost but it has imparted a practical impression to everything. We have thrown light on the actual working of the system in an atmosphere which is basically present in daily routine and we have talked of all the general steps in detail and explained them in way that the explanation gives a complete idea of how it looks like practically and how different tasks are completed and what is the importance of them and what are the main objectives which have to be achieved by following these necessary steps. We are now in a position to look for more and more material in our direction of research and we can make use of the information we get from different sources to make our research more effective and we can complete our thesis on this study. Chapter 4 Analysis of Current EMS Trends 4.1: Worldwide Trends 4.1.1: A quick overview of the level of ISO14001 implementation for the past decade is shown below in figure 3.1. There has been a general rise over the top 10 countries that are implementing ISO14001. The highest number of certification in 1999 was less than 5000 for the top country at the time Japan however in 2009 the highest certificates number was almost 60,000 certificates. China and Japan were the 2 highest countries that have risen in the past decade. Between 2006 and 2007 there has been a decrease in the number of the certificates of ISO14001 because of the financial crisis, and the UK was one of the most effected countries. However, the top 3 countries having ISO14001 certificates were not affected by the financial crisis, China, Japan and Spain, respectively. FIG 4.1 The number of certificates does not represent the actual percentage of the EMS increased in the country. Therefore, another criteria should be added, the number of ISO14001 certificates as a percentage of the population. This criterion clarifies the ratio of EMS certificates relatively to its population. Fig 3.2 shows that China for example has the highest number of certificates but it has very poor number of certificates as a percentage of the population because of the large number of the population. On the other hand, Czech Republic has a low number of certificates but as to a percentage of the population. Romania as well has a high percentage of certification to the population. However, the USA is weak at this particular criterion and the UK can be considered as a country with an average percentage. FIG 4.2 Fig 3.3 shows that the top 2 European countries that implement ISO14001 certificates are not the top ones at implementing EMAS certificates as per million inhabitants, Czech Republic and Romania, respectively. However, there are number of countries that are top in both EMAS and ISO14001 like Germany, Italy and Spain. This may be due to some organizations see EMAS as a form of government interference and since prefer ISO14001 as it is non-government standard. Moreover, many promoting regulations to EMAS usage are in place in EU-15 countries but not in the new states, which will also have had access to EMAS for a shorter amount of time. The top country relative to population is Austria in general; the relative popularity in some states may be due to incentives offered to organizations operating there. (20) FIG 4.3 Trends in the UK and Scandinavian Countries 4.1.2 The project of the year 2010 studied the trends in the UK and Scandinavian countries and determines the differences between them. Therefore, this study will be studied here in more depth. Scandinavian countries are considered of the high countries that have ISO14001 certificates as a percentage of the population. This is may be due because of the shared history, culture and similar societal values which mean all Scandinavian countries are generally sharing the same adopted environment. Sweden has a very high percentage of ISO14001 certificates as a percentage of population and the rest of Scandinavian Countries are on the same bath as Sweden. Fig 3.4 compares the number of ISO14001 certificates per country between the UK and the Scandinavian countries, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden. Therefore, as comparing only the number of ISO14001 certificates, it is noticeable that the UK is in the lead and Sweden follows it from the Scandinavian countries. Furthermore, Fig. 3.5 shows the ISO14001 certificates as a percentage of registered companies. This criterion shows that Sweden has the highest percentage and this shows how good EMS it has. The UK still have higher percentage than Denmark, Finland and Norway, but the difference in ratio between the criterion in fig 3.4 and the criterion in fig 3.5 has massively decreased. The UK has more number of certificates than the 3 Scandinavian countries by 85%. However, although the UK has as well higher number of certificates as a percentage of registered companies than the 3 Scandinavian countries, but it is only higher by twice each one of them separately, as it is shown in Fig 3.5. FIG 4.4 FIG 4.5 FIG 3.6 illustrates that the UK and the Scandinavian countries had roughly close number of certificates of ISO14001 at 1999. Through along the decade from 1999 the number of certificates has been wide for the UK; especially in 2006 it had growth at a high level. Sweden was the best of the Scandinavian countries and has some improvement in its growth rate, not like the other 3 countries Denmark, Norway and Finland their number of certificates growth was almost steady and remained constant over the decade. (20) FIG 4.6 However, as fig 3.7 shows that Denmark has the highest number of certificates of EMAS per country over the UK and Scandinavian countries. This may due to Danish government having strong environmental reporting regulations thus making EMAS in the UK may due to business preferring the more international ISO14001 standard. As we have talked already that the countries like Denmark, Norway, Sweden, etc. have the highest rates for EMS due to many different reasons and only one of them is that the governments there are their selves very much interested in the uptake of EMS by small and large businesses and industries. On the other hand, the people there are more aware of the harmful effects the processes can impart how useful the EMS may be and what are all the pros and cons considering an EMS in their systems. FIG 4.7 Fig 3.8 shows EMAS certificates as a percentage of registered companies. It is relatively plausible for Denmark to have the highest percentage since it had the most number of EMAS certificates on fig 3.7 previously. The other countries mostly follow the same bath of fig 3.7, which makes the UK further down than Denmark in adopting the EMAS certificates as a percentage of registered companies. FIG 4.8 Fig 3.9 shows the growth of EMAS certificates from 1999 to 2009. Norway started at a higher base than the others however it decreases between 2002 and 2006 and had the lowest level of growth at the end of 2009. There was a rapid increase at beginning of the period for Denmark, Sweden and the UK. Sweden and Denmark reached the peak in 2002 and started the decreases again at the same period as Norway. The UK has a steady level of growth along the decade and Finland continues to rise at a steady rate throughout the whole decade. (21) FIG 4.9 Discussion 4.2: The Differences in the uptake of ISO 14001 and EMAS 4.2.1: There are generally seen different trends when we look into the industry in detail. There are industries and companies which try to choose a system which best suits them according to their needs and also they see whether it will be manageable for them or not. There are companies which go for ISO 14001 standard where on the other hand there are also companies which try to follow strict guidelines and try to get them certified with the more sophisticated form of certification and go for EMAS along with ISO 14001. This difference is basically seen because of different type of atmosphere present in different companies and different needs of them and the specifications of the companies also play their role in this scenario. The management of a certain company is responsible for the decision to be made that which system will effectively play the role and which system will be easy for them to manage. The differences in approach are very often seen. The countries in which there is much involvement of the states in the matters and more stress is applied to the environmental management systems, there the EMAS is more popular. The reason behind this fact is that EMAS is developed by the governmental regulation authorities and the companies affiliated with it have to remain in contact more often with the governments all over. The Scandinavian countries of Denmark, Sweden, Norway, etc. are the examples where EMAS systems are seen more often. The countries other than the Scandinavian countries have different trends and different fashions in which they try to walk on this ramp of environmental management systems and environment friendly atmosphere. There has been seen a very huge rise in the number of the certifications of ISO 14000 and this has many possible reasons. The first and the foremost reason which comes to our mind is that companies try to get their selves affiliated to a system which is internationally accepted and is also conventional internationally. The ISO 14001 standard is somehow more popular all over the world as it is not a standard set by some particular government for the regulation of the environmental management systems and it is a standard which has a background stronger than EMAS. The formulation and design of the ISO 14001 was based on many deep studies and great researches and this is one of the reasons that it is so much popular. There are other possible reasons which govern the popularity of ISO 14001 when compared with the popularity of EMAS. There is another reason which is quite easily understandable and it can be the possible reason in many of the cases and that is the easy management of this system. ISO 14001 offers its subscribers with the most helpful and easiest steps to follow and the guidelines of it are just a walk over in comparison with EMAS. Environmental Management Systems for SMEs 4.2.2: EMS is equally important for SMEs as it is for the big companies and the big industrial units because if the SMEs are smaller setups then they are more in number and they also have a strong impact on the environment collectively and so this impact must also be catered while we talk of the protection of environment from harmful effects. The need of EMS for SMEs is greatly pronounced and there are also many different types of surveys for the evaluation of SMEs that how beneficial for them EMS could be and how many SMEs have registered for EMS. There is a special package available in the market for them known as the EMAS easy which has been discussed previously. Fig 4.10 The above figure basically throws light on the benefits of environmental improvements to SMEs. SMEs are very important to be taken into consideration as they can play a vital role in the development of the whole world in terms of the usage of EMS and making the situation of the whole world better for the better future of the environment. Fig 4.11 This figure shows the likelihood of environmental investment in SMEs and it provides us with the information that how much SMEs are predictable to go for an environmental management system. (22) This prediction is not at all the thing which is actually going to happen because no one knows exactly what will be the future but there are certain predictions which are most of the times true because they are based on the facts and figures found and calculated through experimentation and observing the trends of the past greatly helps in this scenario. The most important part of this discussion is that we look for the ways which can lead us towards a better future than predicted but there is always seen a difficulty even attaining the level which is predicted because the situation is getting worse day by day. The situation is becoming better in a sense that more and more companies are making themselves registered for different EMS but at the same time the number of the industrial units and companies who do not follow the policies which ensure a safe environment is also increasing due to an increase in the number of new industries which are being set up. Chapter 5 Case Study 5.1: Airline Industry 5.1.1: We discussed in the first chapter that airlines are a big source of pollution in the environment and we deduced it scientifically talking about many chemical reactions and many facts. Here in this part of the case study, we will try to focus on the valuable data which will be self-explanatory. Before we start off, we must include here, three basic objective strategies of International Civil Aviation Organization: • Safety – enhance the safety of Civil Aviation globally • Security – enhance the security of Civil Aviation globally • Environmental protection and sustainable development of air transport (23) Table 5.1 In the above table, there are the legislations relevant to the airline industry. (24) Table 5.2: The above table contains the information of the airlines which were surveyed and the data is filtered. (25) Table 5.3 The above table is showing the comparisons on the basis of the differences which were observed while making

I Shop Therefore I Am:
Consumer Identity and Culture



I shop Therefore I Am:
Consumer Identity and Culture

Throughout the contemporary culture, people are guided to find their identity in their belongings, because media promotes different life-styles in advertised products. Media consumers ultimately become product purchasers, and it is this process of shopping that decides who people are, or who they want to be. Within this context, consumers are identified, classified and analyzed according to the products they purchase. However, there is another essential piece needed to complete the purchase puzzle known as “consumer identity”. How old is the potential consumer; where does he live; where does he work; how much money does he make? These questions create an identity, ready to reveal subconscious information regarding how the consumer wants to be perceived in society.
Society creates a culture through merging different groups of life-styles, creating identities that follow the same concepts, sharing the same traditions, believes and eventually sharing a similar purchase pattern. Even though, these media cultural groups are often separated by social classes, at some point, all share a part of an identity and a part of a culture. Exemplifying this affirmation, it can be stated that even though French people may be divided in social classes, they all possess the same cultural understanding of the Eiffel Tower and its semiotic significance.
Symbols are attributed meanings, which people perceive as parts of their life-styles, in other words, parts of whom they are. When symbols create significance for multiple groups, consumer culture is created. This culture translates in the belongings of a society, of a group and implicit, of individuality.

Literature Review
The consumer’s identity, created through the products he purchases, has been a long-time concern of many researches in consumer behaviour. Elliott and Wattanasuwan (1998) focus on the narrative identity of the consumer, which he actively creates through purchase. The authors describe the “self”, not as defined by belongings, but as created through the process of purchase and autonomy. However, in light of past research, the authors admit that autonomy is partially existent, since values attributed to specific life-styles are projected by advertisement.

In order to become a part of the contemporary society, the consumer must position himself in time and space. As Elliott and Wattanasuwan (1998) confirm, this can only be achieved through narration. To give meaning to a story, the consumer must use symbols which organise the narration in intangible structures. At this point, “internal-external dialectic of identification” is created. This concept defines the “self” only through collective identity, stating that self identity cannot exist without a social identity.
Considering the analysis of Elliott and Wattanasuwan (1998), the clear link between identity and contemporary consumer culture can only be defined by influence. Through this spectrum, as consumer culture heads towards a concept, the same direction will be taken by self identity. Furthermore, autonomy seems to be a concept that exists only in theory, as consumers take their values from the media messages they are exposed.
To confirm this theory, the report released by WPP (2011) states that once media began to promote positive messages about healthy food and environmental-friendly products, a significant number of consumers became increasingly interested in products that promoted healthy life-styles. Even more than this, this message was so redundant that it created negative responses to fast-food, or products that could pose a threat to the environment (Appendix, image. 1).
Contemporary consumers changed their values so deeply, that they manage to force the whole advertising industry to redefine the notion of brand, and thus regain a part of their autonomy in consumption (WPP, 2011). If comparing this consumer with the consumer of 1998, the difference created resides within the link between identity and consumer culture. In 1998 consumers were driven by media, which drove the masses, who influenced the individual self. Today, the consumer has awakened and claims the importance of his identity. Within this context, there is a considerable decrease in the influence the culture once had over the individual. However, we see that the values promoting the individual as the main focus, as well as the concepts which shifted the world of brands, came from the same source: the media, implicit advertising.
Conclusively, the main link between identity and contemporary consumer culture is based on feed-back, where once culture had more significance over identity, and where now tables have turned. For companies to maintain the loyalty of their clients, a new direction was needed, one that will allow the brand to become a part of the consumer’s life, and satisfy his new need of feeling unique and memorable (WPP, 201).
Another link between identity and contemporary consumer culture resides in a different influence, this time coming from a smaller structure of society. Groups have a strong influence among their members, but also among aspirers for a position in the group; who will attempt to display a similar behaviour with the members of the collective, in an attempt to become a member (Solomon, 2010).
Solomon (2010) claims that the strongest influence coming from a group towards its members and sometimes towards outsiders is possessed by the leader. This singular person, holding vast experience in a particular area, will ultimately alter the purchaseing behaviour of group members and aspirers. Nerveless, the group leader as an individuality would no longer be a leader without the group to support him. In his case, the influence is bilateral, even though he is capable of manipulating purchase decisions.
Cashmore (2006) sees absolute power of influence in celebrities, who are referred to as a famous group, to which the majority of common people aspire. For this reason, their image seems to alter the purchase decision, from goods purchased for long-term such as cars, to ordinary day-to-day purchases, such as coffee (Appendix, image 2).
Unlike Solomon (2010), Cashmore (2006) believes that his group of famous people is not only an aspiration, but a deep behavioural influence among individuals. In other words, people buy products promoted by celebrities, to identify themselves with a piece of their good fortune and uniqueness, and not exclusively with hopes to become a star.
Preceding the analysis of how society influences the identity of a consumer, as well as the assessment of group influence on identity, we head our attention towards global, contemporary consumer behaviour and its influence on “self”. Although connected at a superficial level to identity, global consumer culture still manages to influence individual purchase decisions.

De Mooij (2011) argues that the creator of a global consumption culture is a global communication. This process is similar to the one occurring in society or in groups; however, in this case, the resistance factor is encountered. Similar to global resistance, this global consumption culture resistance creates what is known as consumer resistance. Through this spectrum, an individual may oppose particular behaviour patterns inspired by society at a global level. For example, as the WPP (2011) report mentioned, there is an emerging trend for healthy food all over the world; by which consumers become more aware of the negative effects fast-food has on their body. At the other end of the line, there are fast-food companies claiming that their food is healthy, and their supporters believing their arguments. These supporters create the so called consumer resistance to the tread of healthy living.
Even global brands share the issue of consumer resistance. It is quite difficult to please an enormous number of people who share contrasting believes, and even more difficult to find values that unite them. From this perspective, the global, contemporary consumption can be viewed only through the perspective of technology improvement, healthy life-style trends as well as financial security trends (WPP, 2011). Thus, at a global level, culture can only influence identity in general terms. The links discovered here strictly refer to terms known and desired at a global level. For example, if the media promotes safe, economic strategies, in light of present global economic collapse, consumer resistance to such messages (and implicit to advertising presenting the bank as a secure way to preserve funds) will be considerably reduced.

I shop therefore I am
As Arvidsson (2005) states, consumption can be perceived as generating value, and even though some theories attribute this value production to labor, the act of purchase and consumption is, in fact, a part of the circulation. To further extend this idea, it can be stated that, by the act of consumption, consumers capture the values of products they purchase and not only the items they buy. To illustrate this with an example, the war between Mac and PC represents the perfect image of how consumers connect their “self” with the expression of a brand. The popular image showing PC as a dull, fat man in a suit, as an opposed to the young, rebellious man dressed casual representing the brand image of Mac, clearly displays the idea according to which people tend to identify themselves with brands they purchase (Appendix image 3).
From a cultural perspective, McCracken (1990) argues that human practice is the only sustainable force of culture, as people and their beliefs are the sum of the objects they posses. On the same line of thinking, individuality may only be expressed as a cultural fragment, and not perceived as a singularity.
My own concept of the world resumes to my culture, my traditions and my beliefs, however, they are not my own, but they come from a larger segment, in which sometimes, my own tradition is facing my living environment. As I am from China, the effects of globalisation are affecting my purchase decisions in an “Americanized” manner. For example, foods, I purchase. Although I enjoy a traditional Chinese dish, I still buy fast-foods or fruit smoothies.
In my day-to-day life, I have observed that older people tend to keep their traditions alive, while us, the younger generation, seem to indulge ourselves in the new tradition of globalisation. As De Mooij (2011) argued about the concept of a global consumer, I tend to find myself in this description, from clothes I purchase to the technology I use and even in the food I eat.
Of course, these decisions I take regarding to what I choose to buy, and what I refuse to consider purchasing are related to my group. A brief example of this may be learning materials, such as books I purchase on the influence of my tutor (leader), and that are purchased by my colleagues too. On the other end of the line, my group of friends tends to influence the decisions I take in purchasing cloths or technology. Most of the time; our own concepts of clothing styles come from celebrities and what they wear.
Through this spectrum, I tend to see my ideal self as a person who enjoys using to her own benefit the concept of modern and contemporary. At the other end of the line, I prefer for my colleagues to see me as a conservator and professional student. Combining these two distinctive life-styles creates conflict rather than similitude. Furthermore, even my behaviour changes when I am around colleagues compared to when I am around friends. For example, I would not wear my professional suit in a meeting with friends, but rather when I am meeting colleagues or potential employers.
Considering my national identity, there are various aspects in my purchase behaviour I have lost, and merge in Americanization. I will not purchase on a regular basis ingredients or Chinese foods. Even more than this, my clothes are far from what may be considered as Chinese traditional wear. However, when I am around my family, celebrating our own beliefs, I tend to wear such clothing, leading me to an instant change in my purchase behaviour, as I may buy a new Chinese silk jacket instead of a t-shirt.
If considering my gender, I am a consumer of make-up and beauty products, which I also use by different categories according to my group and according to where I am. Even though, this aspect of my life does not create identity conflicts, I become a different purchaser and consumer every time I need to look different. For example, I may buy a red lipstick to use in the evening, while I may purchase a more natural colour to use during the day. I tend to purchase these products to appeal my friends also to show a positive good-looking image to my colleagues, however; when I am with my family, I tend to use them less, or not at all.
In light of the above stated, my purchase behaviour can be analyzed based on the model of Pam and Higgins described by Ratneshwar and Mick (2005). Initially I determine a need I have. For example, one of my friends purchased a new iPhone, and I realize I may need one too, because I enjoy its practical use, as well as concepts sold with it, such as youthful, creative and fancy.
Before I will engage in this purchase, I will gather some information about the product. I may look for this information online, or I may simply ask my friend how he/she feels about the product. Following this process, I will evaluate all information I have, and decide to buy or not to buy the product based on alternatives. For example, my colleagues may say that the BlackBerry is a better option due to the possibility of sending emails faster and easier and that it appeals more as a professional phone. From this point of view, my ideal self comes in conflict with my professional self when I intend to make a purchase. Eventually, once I purchase the iPhone, I may experience a negative post-purchase behaviour, as my professional self would consider having a BlackBerry instead of an iPhone.

People create culture and culture creates identity. This never-ending circle of “who I am” is what “I buy” and vice versa, is connected by multiple links established between identity and group, identity and society; and identity and global culture. Within this context, the concept of constant feed-back influencing who people become or what they want to become creates the root of consumption. As consumers, people evaluate themselves through what they purchase. Because of this constant influence, people no longer buy items or services; they buy parts of their identity, real or imaginary, as they purchase the idealistic values sold alongside the products.
All decisions taken for purchase or for the refusal of purchase comes from the smallest segment of influence: the group and its leader. Ultimately, these are the strongest links connecting people with contemporary consumer culture. What is considered to be modern will be brought into the group by the leader. This group will bear influence on aspires who desire to attain membership. Eventually, this transcends to society and global culture of consumption. As such, emerging from an individualistic need to belong to a particular group, the desires and aspirations that create individuality become the desires and aspirations of the whole society leading to the concept of consumer culture. This relationship is possible only through the means of human nature, always aspiring to an ideal identity, in which values such as security, beauty, wealth, health and belonging are a global need.


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Arvidsson, A. (2005). Brands: A critical perspective. Journal of Consumer Culture. Sage. Retrieved on November 27th, 2011 from:

Cashmore. E. (2006). Celebrity Culture. U.S.A. Routledge.

De Mooij, M. K. (2011) Consumer Behavior and Culture: Consequences for Global Marketing and Advertising. Thousand Oaks, London, New Delhi: SAGE.

Elliott, R. & Wattanasuwan, K. (1998). Brands as Symbolic Resources for the Construction of Identity. International Journal of Advertising. Vol. 17. No. 2. pp 131-144.

McCracken, G. (1990). Culture & Consumption: New Approaches to Symbolic Character of Consumer. U.S.A. Indiana University Press.

Ratneshwar, S. and Mick, D.G. (Eds.). (2005). Inside Consumption: Consumer Motives, Goals, and Desires. U.S.A. Routledge

Solomon, M. R. (2010). Consumer Behaviour: A European Perspective. 4th. Ed. Cap. 10. Group Influence and opinion leadership. U.S.A. Prentice Hall.

WPP (2011). Brandz Top: 100 Most Valuable Global Brands, Milward Brown Optimor, Reterived on November 28th, 2011 from:

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