Greenwashing and environmental claims in the car industry
About the Company
CEVT is an innovation and development center for future technologies of the Geely Group. The company purpose is to be at the forefront of new developments within mobility, focusing on electrification, sustainability and autonomous drive. Modular development, advanced virtual engineering and state of the art software development enable the company to deliver world-class technology to all Geely Group brands.
The whole industry is now undergoing a transformation with new ways of thinking about the car as a product. CEVT is a fast growing, fast moving and exciting company where no day is like the other – where the challenges of tomorrow are on their working table today. CEVT consists of 2000 people with offices in Gothenburg and Trollhättan in Sweden and the organisation currently works on projects for Volvo Cars, Geely Auto, Lynk & Co and Lotus. For more information, visit www.cevt.se
About the Assignment
At the end of 2020, the European Commission launched the New Consumer Agenda for the next five years. The aim of this agenda is to empower European consumers to make informed choices and play an active role in the ecological and digital transition wherever they are in the European Union.
One key area of the New Consumer Agenda is ’Green transition’, where two sub-sections include ”Informing consumers on the environmental sustainability characteristics of products” as well as ”Protecting consumers against certain practices such as greenwashing” and ”Ensuring access to reliable information”.
A concrete action within the program is Greenwashing screening over several industries. The car industry has many challenges to overcome to ensure a societal transition to more sustainable practices. The automotive industry needs to ensure that its claims around environmental sustainability meet the demands of the New Consumer Agenda. In this exciting short assignment, you will be contributing to that objective.
Your task in this short assignment is to review the environmental claims of different car brands. Your focus will on the interior of the vehicle, as it’s one of the main physical interaction points between the product and the user(s).
At the beginning of the assignment, you will, together with the client, decide what car brands to screen. You will then work your way through a set of questions that focuses on the interior of the cars. Examples of questions include:
- What types of claims does the applicable company present?
- Are the claims connected the actual products/production (in terms of performance or composition) or are they relating to possible products (such as a concepts) or policies (such as visions or goals)?
- Are the claims specific enough or too general? For example, is the company’s idea of ”sustainable” at all explained and is it specifically related to the product’s performance?
- Are the claims relevant for the product/business? (How?) Does the claim apply to the major impact area(s) of the product or minor ones?
- Are the claims explained or quantified, and in that case, is the method of measurement clearly described? (For example: if recycled content is mentioned, how much of the material content in terms of percentage is so? Is the feedstock of the recycled content mentioned, i.e. where does it come from? How does a company define ’low carbon footprint’?) Does the company provide transparent and traceable documentation as proof for claims? (For example, do they provide applicable certification?) Is it likely that the claims are true or is there not enough information to say?
- Is the company forthcoming with its weaknesses?
- In your opinion, who is best in class in your research in terms of implementing sustainability and communicating claims? How so?
We invite you to apply on your own, or together with one or several friend(s). Don’t miss out on this exciting opportunity to work with a leader in the automotive industry on issues that matter in the long term.
Looking forward to your application!