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In this study, we bring the case of Brazilcar, the Brazilian subsidiary of a multinational car manufacturer that tries to implement sustainability, but its results are far from what they initially expected, given the presence of silos between departments that difficult communication and alignment of activities. Ultimately, there is decoupling between the means and ends the company is using to reach sustainability. To explore the understudied silo-decoupling relationship, we use the case of Brazilcar. We conducted 480 hours of ethnographic observation, 73 semi-structured interviews and document analysis of internal news and reports. Findings reveal a mutually reinforcing relationship between silos and decoupling, in which silos become pre-cognitive, and individuals reproduce decoupling unconsciously. We contribute to both institutional (decoupling) and sustainability implementation studies.

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