The evolution of sustainability model patterns among winning participants of the Horizon Europe EIC Accelerator funding program

Do Nguyen Minh Chau and Zonai Roland (2022) The evolution of sustainability model patterns among winning participants of the Horizon Europe EIC Accelerator funding program. In: No Question: Sustainability is Everyone’s Business V. BBS International Sustainability Student Conference Proceedings. Budapesti Gazdasági Egyetem, Budapest, Magyarország, pp. 44-57. ISBN 978-615-6342-38-6

[thumbnail of Do_Nguyen.pdf] Text
Do_Nguyen.pdf - Published Version

Download (967kB)
Official URL:


How many of the recently emerged and described sustainability models bring success to companies in the practice on the European level? In this study, prior winning participants of the Horizon Europe funding framework's EIC Accelerator program were analyzed regarding their extent of implementing various sustainability models described in the widely established 40 Circular Economy Business Model Patterns sustainable model categorization framework proposed by the BMI Institute to understand the relevance and applicability of sustainability models in practice in the European Union. During the study, a list of 391 former EIC Accelerator winning companies was retrieved from the EIC Accelerator Data Hub from the years of 2020 and 2021, which were manually analyzed and categorized into 13 distinct thematic categories based on the official Horizon Europe topic keywords. Among these, 31 startups falling into the Earth/Environmental Sciences category were individually analyzed to understand their applied business models and product functions to forecast their extent of including the 40 sustainability model patterns. Results showed that among the 40 patterns, 3 sustainability models, namely the ‘Produce on Demand’, ‘Eco Lock-in’, and ‘Eco-Efficiency’ were identified to have the highest level of implementation among the 31 winning thematic companies. Interestingly, insignificant difference was observed for the appearance rate of other sustainability models among all winning participants and the selected group of those participants which already deployed the most frequently used ‘Produce on Demand’ model. Finally, the trends of model emergence and decline were analyzed for the 40 models over the 2020 and 2021 period among the winning participants, where significant changes were observed in the appearance of novel sustainability models, with ‘Servitisation’ and ‘Smart Assets’ being the most dominantly emerging patterns, and ‘Eco-Efficiency’ and ‘Communicate Responsibility’ being the most declining patterns in 2021. The conclusion of initial results assume only a distant relationship between how the combination of various sustainability models would influence each other, suggesting that the implementation of different sustainability models is rather impacted by other factors, e.g. the company’s technology and the implemented business model rather than the direct presence of other sustainability models. Furthermore, results also suggest the increase of complexity in the applied sustainability models over the years, likely driven by societal trends and the evolution of business model design

Tudományterület / tudományág

társadalomtudományok > gazdálkodás- és szervezéstudományok


Pénzügyi és Számviteli Kar


Budapesti Gazdasági Egyetem

Item Type: Book Section
CreatorsORCIDMTMT szerző azonosító
Do Nguyen Minh Chau
Zonai Roland
Uncontrolled Keywords: sustainability, sustainable development, sustainability models, technology funding, Horizon Europe, EIC Accelerator
Depositing User: Eszenyi-Bakos Kinga
DOI id:
Date Deposited: 2022. Oct. 06. 09:11
Last Modified: 2022. Oct. 13. 14:26

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item