The relevance of SBM research: Highly commended and top-ranked articles

The SBM community knows well that research on sustainable business models is urgently needed. But how about the broader community of sustainability (and mainstream) scholars? Common forms of acknowledging the quality and relevance of research are public recommendations and rankings.

To my knowledge, five articles and one individual research project included in the open reference list received some form of public acknowledgement (in chronological order):

  • Seelos, C. & Mair, J. (2005): Social entrepreneurship: Creating new business models to serve the poor, Business Horizons, Vol. 48, No. 3, pp. 241-246.
    This article is permanently ranked as one of the 25 “Hottest Articles” published in Business Horizons according to ScienceDirect; current rank: 17 (see and ScienceDirect Business Horizons Top 25).
  • Seelos, C. & Mair, J. (2007): Profitable business models and market creation in the context of deep poverty: A strategic view, Academy of Management Perspectives, Vol. 21, No. 4, pp. 49-63.
    This article won two international awards: 1. Best Paper for Practitioner Implications Award 2007 of the Strategic Management Society; 2. International Finance Corporation (IFC) / Financial Times (FT) 2008 Gold Price (see
  • Jupesta, J.; Harayama, Y. & Parayil, G. (2011): Sustainable business model for biofuel industries in Indonesia, Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, Vol. 2, No. 2, pp. 231-247.
    This article has been chosen as a “Highly Commended Award Winner” at the Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2012 (see SAMPJ’s awards archive).
  • Boons, F.; Montalvo, C.; Quist, J. & Wagner, M. (2013): Sustainable innovation, business models and economic performance: an overview, Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 45, pp. 1-8.
    This article is one of the top 25 Journal of Cleaner Production articles in ScienceDirect’s “Hottest Articles” ranking; current rank: 9 (see ScienceDirect Journal of Cleaner Production Top 25).
  • Boons, F. & Lüdeke-Freund, F. (2013): Business Models for Sustainable Innovation: State-of-the-Art and Steps towards a Research Agenda, Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 45, pp. 9-19.
    This article is one of the top 25 Journal of Cleaner Production articles in ScienceDirect’s “Hottest Articles” ranking; current rank: 7 (see ScienceDirect Journal of Cleaner Production Top 25).
  • Richter, M. (2013): Business model innovation for sustainable energy: German utilities and renewable energy, Energy Policy, online first 8 July 2013.
    Richter’s research on business models and business model innovation for renewable energies received an advancement award (“Förderpreis WIND 2013”) issued by the WindEnergieZirkel Hanse e.V. (press release in German).

The open reference list contains links to these and many more highly interesting SBM publications. If you know further distinguished articles that should be mentioned here, just send an e-mail to

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