Industry 4.0 and environmental sustainability, two of the hottest topics discussed by academic and business practitioners, are recognised to be strictly linked, since the agility, flexibility and efficiency promoted by Industry 4.0 technologies could represent a good way to decrease the impact of business activity on natural environment. Literature discussing Industry 4.0 and sustainability in depth is very sparse and there is currently a substantial lack of empirical evidence on Industry 4.0 and sustainability linkage. The aim of this paper is to shed the light on this topic by questioning if there a relationship between Industry 4.0 (hereafter I4.0) adoption and firms’ environmental performance and if this relationship changes for different I4.0 technologies. Using Independent T-test analysis on a sample of 71 Italian firms, we find that companies that adopted Industry 4.0 reach higher environmental performance than firms that do not. In particular, this effect is even higher for companies that implement more operational technologies.
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