While corporate sustainability is interpreted broadly to mean ensuring success in the present without compromising the future, a well–accepted workable definition has remained elusive. Sustainability is often defined using a set of criteria or metrics that address the recognised environmental, social, and economic pillars of sustainability. However, standard metrics fail to account for how companies deal with operational challenges to their sustainability and viability. As a 175 year old diesel engine manufacturer, Navistar, Inc. has developed a model to address not only the three pillars of sustainability but also its significant business challenges, including those related to health concerns over its diesel products and environmental and employee legacies. Featuring a commitment to sustainable innovation and product stewardship and reliance on sound science, Navistar's sustainability model has evolved in response to its unique operating environment. This model illustrates the benefits of designing sustainability strategies to address specific business challenges rather than a standard set of criteria.
Keywords: corporate sustainability, sustainability modelling, sustainability metrics, diesel engines, diesel exhaust, product stewardship, environment, corporate strategy, business strategy, sustainable innovation, science, environmental legacies, employee legacies, Navistar, sustainable development