Why Do Companies Rent Green? Real Property and Corporate Social Responsibility

Program on Housing and Urban Policy Working Paper No. W09-004

49 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2009

See all articles by Piet M. A. Eichholtz

Piet M. A. Eichholtz

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE)

Nils Kok

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE)

John M. Quigley

University of California, Berkeley, College of Letters & Science, Department of Economics (Deceased); University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business, Real Estate Group (Deceased)

Date Written: August 20, 2009

Abstract

This paper provides the first systematic analysis of the choice by organizations to occupy green office space. We develop a framework of ecological responsiveness, and we formulate five propositions to explain why specific firms and industries may be more likely to lease green space. We test these propositions by analyzing the decisions of more than 11,000 tenants to choose office space in green buildings or in otherwise comparable non-green buildings located nearby. We find that corporations in the oil and banking industries, as well as government-related and non-profit organizations, are among the most prominent green tenants. After appropriately controlling for building quality and for location within one quarter mile, our empirical analysis shows that firms in mining and construction and organizations in public administration are relatively more likely to lease green rather than conventional office space. Furthermore, organizations employing higher levels of human capital (as measured by skills and compensation) are more likely to lease green office space.

Suggested Citation

Eichholtz, Piet M. A. and Kok, Nils and Quigley, John M., Why Do Companies Rent Green? Real Property and Corporate Social Responsibility (August 20, 2009). Program on Housing and Urban Policy Working Paper No. W09-004, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1521702 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1521702

Piet M. A. Eichholtz

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE) ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands
+31 43 3883648 (Phone)
+31 43 3258530 (Fax)

Nils Kok

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE) ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands

John M. Quigley (Contact Author)

University of California, Berkeley, College of Letters & Science, Department of Economics (Deceased) ( email )

Berkeley, CA 94720-3880
United States
510-643-7411 (Phone)
510-643-7357 (Fax)

University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business, Real Estate Group (Deceased) ( email )

Berkeley, CA 94720-1900
United States

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