Special Issue "Sustainable International Management: Research in Global Culture and Leadership Development"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Economic and Business Aspects of Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 December 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Alfredo Jiménez
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Management, Kedge Business School, 31405 Bordeaux, France
Interests: internationalization; cultural distance; political risk; multinational enterprises; global virtual teams
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Dorra Yahiaoui
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Management, Kedge Business School, 13288 Marseille, France
Interests: internationalization; multinational entreprises; leadership; HRM practices; cross-culture management; innovation
Dr. Chi Zhang
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Management, Kedge Business School, 13288 Marseille, France
Interests: sustainable supply chain management; cross-cultural management; guanxi; buyer–supplier relationship management; supply chain collaboration
Dr. Cuiling Jiang
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Management, Kedge Business School, 31405 Bordeaux, France
Interests: internationalization; multinational companies; small–medium companies; leadership; organizational change; culture

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Organizations are giving increasing attention to corporate sustainability due to the regulative requests, expectation of stakeholders and the greater community, environmental pressure, and the benefits of achieving firms’ performance. With the intensification of globalization, sustainability no longer remains an issue inside each organization but becomes a collective concern that also involves its overseas suppliers and customers. As a multidimensional construct, it is worth investigating sustainability from different perspectives in this global cultural context. Prior studies have investigated sustainability from culture, human resource management, boardroom nationality, boardroom gender diversity, corporate identity, organizational capabilities, measurements to corporate sustainability performance, challenges in achieving sustainability, and so forth. 

The goal of the Special Issue is to expand the existing literature on these themes by offering new insights and future perspectives on how informal institutions (e.g., changing cultural values and cultural practices) and formal institutions (e.g., regulations, norms) may interplay together and affect corporate sustainability performance, as well as what the role is of leadership in shaping corporate sustainability policies and practices.  

We invite both conceptual and empirical research on the above themes. We are particularly interested in research combining multiple theoretical backgrounds and methodological approaches, as well as literature review or theory papers. Examples of relevant topics for this Special Issue include but are not limited to the following:

  1. How do institutional practices (formal and informal) interplay with culture to affect the development of corporate sustainability practices?
  2. How do developed economies of multinational companies transfer corporate sustainability practices across borders? What strategies do they use? What is the role of culture and leadership in this transfer? Does corporate sustainability performance vary from one country to another? Does the reverse transfer of corporate sustainability practices exist?
  3. How do the emerging economies of multinational enterprises manage their corporate sustainability performance in their internationalization and localization processes, while considering long-term vs. short-term strategies and spatial dimensions (e.g., local vs global)?
  4. How do go-global enterprises manage corporate sustainability?
  5. How does COVID-19 affect firms’ corporate sustainability performance across borders?
  6. How could companies use human resource management to balance the tensions that occur between economic, social, and environmental concerns in the global context?
  7. What is the impact of crisis management on organizations’ sustainable practices in their overseas market?
  8. What are the different perceptions of power/motivation/leadership across countries when implementing sustainable policies?
  9. Which leadership style do companies foster the most to implement and develop corporate sustainability practices?


  1. Alshehhi, A.; Nobanee, H.; Khare, N. The impact of sustainability practices on corporate financial performance: Literature trends and future research potential. Sustainability 2018, 10, 494, doi:10.3390/su10020494.
  2. Bansal, T.; Song, H.C. Similar But Not the Same: Differentiating Corporate Sustainability from Corporate Responsibility. Manag. Ann. 2017, 11, 105–149, doi:10.5465/annals.2015.0095.
  3. Günter, K.S.; Brewster, C.J.; Collings, D.G.; Hajro, A. Enhancing the role of human resource management in corporate sustainability and social responsibility: A multi-stakeholder, multidimensional approach to HRM. Resour. Manag. Rev. 2020, 30, 100708, doi:10.1016/j.hrmr.2019.100708.
  4. Hahn, T.; Figge, F.; Pinkse, J.; Preuss, L. A Paradox Perspective on Corporate Sustainability: Descriptive, Instrumental, and Normative Aspects. Bus. Ethics. 2018, 148, 235–248, doi:10.1007/s10551-017-3587-2.
  5. Islam, M.S.; Tseng, M.L.; Karia, N. Assessment of corporate culture in sustainability performance using a hierarchical framework and interdependence relations. Clean. Prod. 2019, 217, 676–690. doi:10.1016/j.jclepro.2019.01.259.
  6. Miska, M.; Szőcs, I.; Schiffinger, M. Culture’s effects on corporate sustainability practices: A multi-domain and multi-level view. World Bus. 2018, 53, 263–279, doi:10.1016/j.jwb.2017.12.001.

Dr. Alfredo Jiménez
Dr. Dorra Yahiaoui
Dr. Chi Zhang
Dr. Cuiling Jiang
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • culture
  • corporate sustainability
  • go-global entreprises
  • implications
  • institutionalization
  • leadership
  • multinational entreprises
  • performance

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Science Mapping of the Global Knowledge Base on Management, Leadership, and Administration Related to COVID-19 for Promoting the Sustainability of Scientific Research
Sustainability 2021, 13(17), 9631; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13179631 - 27 Aug 2021
Viewed by 405
The pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus has resulted in inevitable radical changes across almost all areas of daily life, with the pandemic having revealed perhaps the greatest crisis humanity has faced in modern history. This study aims to provide thematic and methodological [...] Read more.
The pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus has resulted in inevitable radical changes across almost all areas of daily life, with the pandemic having revealed perhaps the greatest crisis humanity has faced in modern history. This study aims to provide thematic and methodological recommendations for future sustainable research programs through a bibliometric analysis of publications focused on management, leadership, and administration related to COVID-19. The data for the study were obtained from the Web of Science Core Collection (WoSCC) bibliographic database and then analyzed according to thematic content analysis and bibliometric methodology. The study’s units of analysis include countries, journals, keywords, research models, sample/study group, and time to publication. VOSviewer software and visualization maps were used to report the findings obtained from the analyzed data. When the study’s results are evaluated regarding the number of related publications and total citations, it can be revealed that Anglo-American-, Chinese-, and European-centered dominance continues in COVID-19-related studies. The vast majority of publications on this subject area are concentrated in the field of health. In addition, the study’s findings revealed that the examined articles were generally published in journals considered as prestigious, have high impact factors, are published in the English language, and with articles published in a short time after a much-reduced editorial/review and publishing process. Unlike previous bibliometric reviews, this research comprehensively analyzed the management-, leadership-, and administration-oriented publications related to COVID-19 with a holistic approach, providing essential findings and recommendations for future sustainable thematic research opportunities. Full article
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