A Study of Sustainability: Developing a Holistic Approach towards the Scope and Impact of Change

By Stephanie Sandland.

Published by The Sustainability Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In this paper, the concept of sustainability is recognised to be the long term survival of societies. It is recognised that this is a multifaceted issue, involving numerous stakeholders competing for different outcomes in order to satisfy their disparate needs. These stakeholders include elements that involve an interdependent network of relationships that is vulnerable to change. It is thus evident that the whole question of sustainability is that of a complex problem, whereby inappropriate action could yield unintended consequences that render them at best ineffective and at worst, detrimental to progress towards a sustainable future.
This paper seeks to establish an understanding of this messy problem at a holistic level and attempts to address sustainability by governments and institutions and various theories across a range of disciplines including those relating to Kondratieff’s long waves, social and technological determinism and stakeholder theory in an attempt to expose the web of factors that constitute this messy problem. Having identified the component parts, a systems map will be presented and developed in order to explore the relationships within the system in order to improve our understanding of the pressures that will be created in any move towards sustainability

Keywords: Economic Stability, Paradigm Change, Technological Determinism, Social Constructionism, Long Waves, Stakeholder, Change Management, Societal change

The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic and Social Sustainability, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp.269-284. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.477MB).

Stephanie Sandland

Senior Lecturer, Business School, University of East London, London, UK

Stephanie Sandland is a Senior Lecturer in the Business School at the University of East London. Her core interests are that of Corporate Social Responsibility, with an emphasis on a concern for environmental management. She is currently working towards her PhD on a holistic approach to sustainability.

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