Date of Conferral

1-1-2011

Degree

Doctor of Business Administration (D.B.A.)

School

Management

Advisor

Alice Denomme Gobeille

Abstract

Managers at automotive manufacturers are seeking ways to reduce energy consumption, costs, carbon emissions, and waste from production processes. Researchers and practitioners perceive energy efficiency as the least expensive and most effective way to deal with issues related to climate change, but adoption of energy efficiency measures has been slow among industrial facilities. The topic of this research study was the decision-making process for energy efficiency projects in the U.S. automotive manufacturing industry. Flaws in this decision-making processes are preventing changes that can dramatically reduce energy usage, cost, and pollution. The study was grounded in the theories of energy management, organizational learning, systems thinking, and strategic management. Data is from open-ended question interviews and questionnaires of 21 decision makers in automotive manufacturing companies in the United States about their perception and experiences regarding the decision-making process for energy efficiency projects. The data were coded to identify themes. The findings indicated that organizational leaders with responsibility over energy management should include energy management standards and frameworks such as ISO 50001, Six Sigma DMAIC, and Energy Star as guidelines for selecting energy efficiency projects. Decision makers may find these results useful in improving their decision-making processes for evaluating energy efficiency projects. This research has the potential to promote positive social change in the automotive industry by reducing energy consumption and business costs, and it could benefit communities by reducing pollution through increasing energy efficiency in the automotive manufacturing industries.