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Vera Sadovska

Vera Sadovska

Postdoctoral fellow

Vera Sadovska

We do it our way – small scale farms in business model transformation for sustainability


  • Vera Sadovska
  • Fredrik Fernqvist
  • Henrik Barth

Summary, in English

Value creation is at the core of business model (BM) research, but the link between BM and value creation remains unclear. In this work, empirical data on BM transformation towards sustainable value creation in the agri-food sector, were obtained through case studies. Factors in BM transformation were identified, transformations in different BM segments were analysed and sustainable value created through these transformations was assessed. Factors such as owner-manager mind-set, experiences of sustainability and market pressures were found to drive transformation. All cases performed generic and case-specific transformation activities, with an animal welfare ethos and sustainable solutions for distribution and transport being central for all firms. Differences in strategies and cooperation derived mainly from the geographical and micro-context. While exhibiting innovativeness, the sustainable value created was predominantly within the current time horizon. Holistic integration of sustainability into core business was challenging for the farms, due to lack of knowledge and systemic approach to sustainability. All farms expressed a desire for learning and exchange of knowledge, a gap not met by other institutions in the sector. Six directions for future research on sustainable value creation through BM transformation are suggested.

Publishing year





Journal of Rural Studies



Document type

Journal article






  • ISSN: 1873-1392