Importance of national green reputation. Earlier this year, Dual Citizen Inc. conducted the first-ever survey measuring expert practitioner perceptions of the green reputations of 27 countries around the world. We talk to Jeremy Tamanini, Founder of Dual Citizen Inc. about the research results and importance of national green reputation.

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Best Place: What do you call a country’s reputation – why and for whom is it important?

Jeremy Tamanini: National reputations matter most for key stakeholders in a country’s public and private sectors whose strategic and functional roles can sometimes be enhanced by developing and leveraging positive attributes of their country’s reputation.

BP: Do people expect their countries to be green? How would you describe „national green reputation”?

JT: Green products and corporate social responsibility are priorities to consumers of commercial products and citizens hold their leaders increasingly accountable to standards of environmental responsibility.  It is natural then that a country’s green reputation – defined by its green leadership, domestic policies, investment climate and green tourism options – would become an important aspect of a nation’s reputation management.

BP: Which countries occur – accordingly to the research – to have the best „national green reputation” and why?

JT: A block of northern European nations lead by Germany and Denmark have the best national green reputations in 2010.  The leaders of these nations are visible on the global stage advocating for green issues and their domestic policies and investment opportunities are viewed as exemplary. Larger economies like China and the United States are perceived as being the best investment targets for clean tech in the next 10 years and New Zealand is the undisputed leader in promoting green tourism within its borders.

BP: Do you consider „green marketing” as an important trend in place marketing? How could cities and regions benefit from this?

JT: Commercial brands quickly figured out the appeal of associating „green” with their products.  But over time, consumers revolted when this wasn’t genuine and simply felt like a gimmick to increase prices and margins. So, green marketing could be valuable in place marketing to the extent that it is genuine and reflects a real and unique commitment to sustainability. Given the growth opportunities in these sectors, cities and regions that adopt smart green strategies will realize tangible gains from increased tourism, investment and overall visibility.

BP: Why Poland was not the subject of the research? How did you select the countries that appear in the report?

JT: The first version of this report in 2010 focused on 27 nations – mostly in the developed world – with relatively mature green economies. These 27 nations also are highlighted in similar reports measuring green policies and investment flows so our results could easily be compared. More nations will be added to future versions of the report as they demonstrate a real commitment to this area through the actions of their leaders, the policies they pursue domestically, the vitality of their green investment climate and the extent to which green tourism is an option when visiting their country.


BP: Do you think Poland and other East European countries are ‚mature’ enough to take care of their green reputation?

JT: Many countries in Eastern Europe embrace innovation and have witnessed strong growth in their economies and overall national reputations over the past 10 years. So, there is no reason Eastern European countries couldn’t focus on their green reputations successfully in the future.

BP: Do you plan to do similar research at city level?

JT: This is a compelling area of research and certainly something we hope to look at.  The policy dialogue between nations and cities is a reciprocal one where cities are often drivers of national policy.  As global populations become increasingly urbanized, climate change and green issues will grow in importance to city leaders and their green reputations will become a more central element.