About the Eco-innovation Manual

This manual has been commissioned by UN Environment and funded by the European Commission. It is also the result of close collaboration with the Technical University of Denmark.


Eco-innovation is a new business model which promotes sustainability throughout the entire life cycle of a product, while also boosting a company’s performance and competitiveness. Funded by the European Commission and co-ordinated by UN Environment, the Eco-innovation Project ran from 2012-2017 in developing and transition economies. Those countries comprised Colombia, Peru, Egypt, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and Vietnam.


The Eco-innovation Manual itself is also the result of four years of projects – and ongoing activities – by teams at the National Cleaner Production Centre Sri Lanka, the Centre for Creativity and Sustainability in Vietnam, SIRIM Berhad in Malaysia, the National Cleaner Production Centre in South Africa, Uganda Cleaner Production Centre, Egypt National Cleaner Production Centre, the Centro Nacional de Ecoeficiencia y Responsabilidad Social in Peru, and the Centro Nacional de Producción Más Limpia y Tecnologías Ambientales in Colombia. UN Environment is grateful for their committed work in testing and applying the eco-innovation manual’s methodology with small and medium-sized enterprises in their respective countries, and for their invaluable feedback from this experience.


UN Environments acknowledges the following people who contributed to the Eco-innovation Manual.

Jamie O’Hare

Tim C. McAloone

Daniela C. A. Pigosso

Thomas J. Howard

J. Diaz Lopez

Anton Kaasjager

Matt Jongen

Erika Ustailieva

Tom Lighart

Carlos Montalvo

Marcel Crul

Ursula Tischner

J.C. Diehl

Johannes Fresner

Long Nguyen Hong

Ali Abo Sena

Carlos Fernando Cadavid

Karim Zein

Lars Coenen

Jose Maria Fernandez

Reinhard Joas

Smail Alhilali

Cesar Barahona

Get in involved

We would love to hear stories or questions about your eco-innovation activities, feel free to drop us a line at hello@unep.ecoinnovation.org or join our linkedin group