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Sustainability 2016, 8(5), 444;

Navigating Sustainability Embeddedness in Management Decision-Making

Department of Business Management, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 0083, South Africa
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Giuseppe Ioppolo
Received: 28 February 2016 / Revised: 27 April 2016 / Accepted: 28 April 2016 / Published: 5 May 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue How Better Decision-Making Helps to Improve Sustainability - Part II)
Full-Text   |   PDF [264 KB, uploaded 5 May 2016]


Sustainability is an essential theme for business. In order to compete, strategies need to be improvised and efficient and effective decisions need to be made for improved sustainability performance. Despite management’s apparent knowledge of this, it appears that challenges persist with sustainability’s embeddedness in decision-making and its implementation in practice. In this study we propose a metaphor applying an integrative view of sustainability as support for management. We offer six antecedents of sustainability embeddedness in decision-making that contribute to building and confirming theory, and also provide a better understanding of current practice around sustainability embeddedness so that strategies can be developed for improved sustainability performance. Employees on all management levels in a stock exchange listed company provided rich empirical data for the study. Through the analysis of data in a case study, antecedents were inductively identified, conceptualized, and presented as using descriptive labels, namely: A True North Destination—a vision of sustainability embeddedness; Mountains—three obstacles; Fog—confusion and complexity; Myopia—shortsightedness; Navigation Necessities—requirements for the journey; and finally, the Chosen Team—selected stakeholders. Sustainability embeddedness was found to be dependent on leadership, the strategy message and structures, performance measures, and policies that support a unified culture for sustainability embeddedness. View Full-Text
Keywords: sustainability; embeddedness; decision-making; sustainable decisions; integrative view; metaphor; antecedents sustainability; embeddedness; decision-making; sustainable decisions; integrative view; metaphor; antecedents
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Le Roux, C.; Pretorius, M. Navigating Sustainability Embeddedness in Management Decision-Making. Sustainability 2016, 8, 444.

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