Organizational Change for Corporate Sustainability

3rd Edition

By Suzanne Benn, Dexter Dunphy, Andrew Griffiths

© 2014 – Routledge

350 pages | 24 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415695497
pub: 2014-05-09
US Dollars$69.95
Hardback: 9780415695480
pub: 2014-05-13
US Dollars$160.00

Look Inside e–Inspection Copy

About the Book

Since this classic book was first published in 2003, sustainability has increasingly become mainstream business for leading corporations, whilst the topic itself has also been a hotly debated political issue across the globe. The sustainability phase models originally discussed in the book have become more relevant with ever more examples of organizations at later stages in the development of corporate sustainability.

Bringing together global issues of ecological sustainability, strategic human resource management, organizational change, corporate social responsibility, leadership and community renewal, this new edition of the book further develops its unified approach to corporate sustainability and its plan of action to bring about corporate change. It integrates new research and brings illustrative case studies up to date to reflect how new approaches affect change and leadership. For the first time, a new positive model of a future sustainable world is included - strengthened by references to the global financial crisis, burgeoning world population numbers and the rise of China.

With new case studies including BP's Gulf oil spill and Tokyo Electric Company's nuclear reactor disaster, this new edition will again be core reading for students and researchers of sustainability and business, organizational change and corporate social responsibility.


‘Organizational change has always been a topic of central importance both in research and in practice. Corporate sustainability is perhaps the most important theme for organizations facing challenges in resources, business models and environmental impact. This book brings these two important topics together and creates a valuable resource for students, researchers and managers alike. The third edition builds on the strengths of the previous editions and I highly recommend it.’Robert MacIntosh, Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh, UK

‘Informative, honest and engaging! This is a topic of growing significance and in this book Benn, Dunphy and Griffiths not only map the territory of organizational change for sustainability, but also show us how we can make it happen!’ - Johan Sandström, PhD, Professor, Industrial Environmental Management, Luleå University of Technology, Sweden

‘This book presents a meaningful view on being strategically sustainable by developing a new co-operative relationship with internal and external stakeholders. In exploring this kind of third wave of sustainable corporations the authors convincingly demonstrate the need for ‘whole system thinking’ and the use of ‘silo busting’ collaborative change approaches. This is an essential reading for managers, students and change agents.’ - Antonie van Nistelrooij, Ass. professor 'Organisational change & Development', VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Table of Contents

Part I: Towards Third Wave Corporations 1. Setting the Agenda for Corporate Sustainability 2. The Drivers of Change Part II: Managing the Persistent Past: Dealing with First Wave Corporations 3. Corporate Pre-compliance and Compliance Part III: The Dominant Current Reality: Understanding and Reconstructing Second Wave Corporations 4. Achieving Sustainable Operational Efficiencies 5. Sustainability: The Strategic Advantage 6. The Sustaining Corporation Part IV: Pathways to Sustainability: Towards Third Wave Corporations 7. The Incremental Path 8. The Transformational Path 9. Leading Towards Sustainability

Chapter 1

This chapter explains the pressing reasons for corporations to implement sustainability and summarises the key points of the sustainability phase model in terms of human and ecological sustainability.

Chapter 2

This chapter provides a detailed description of the drivers of change towards sustainability, summarising the key points of the business case for sustainability

Chapter 3

This chapter gives examples of organisations that are either rejecting or being non-responsive to sustainability. It defines compliance and explains the changes that need to be made for the organisation to reach compliance.

Chapter 4

This chapter explains what it means to be in the efficiency phase of sustainability, and summarises the key steps that organisations need to take to reach this phase.

Chapter 5

This chapter explains what it means to be in the strategic proactivity phase of sustainability, and summarises the key steps that organisations need to take to reach this phase.

Chapter 6

This chapter explains what it means to be in the ideal phase of sustainability, and summarises the key steps that organisations need to take to reach this phase.

Chapter 7

This chapter sets out the steps involved in incremental change for sustainability and shows how it relates to the phase model.

Chapter 8

This chapter sets out the steps involved in transformational change for sustainability and shows how it relates to the phase model.

Chapter 9

This chapter explains the importance of change agent mastery and summarises different approaches to leadership and how they might progress sustainability.

About the Authors

Suzanne Benn is Professor of Sustainable Enterprise in the School of Management at the University of Technology, Sydney's Business School in Australia

Dexter Dunphy is Emeritus Professor of Management at the University of Technology, Sydney, Australia

Andrew Griffiths is Professor of Business Sustainability and Strategy and Dean of the Business School at The University of Queensland, Australia, where he is also Director of the Sustainable Business Unit

About the Series

Routledge Studies in Organizational Change & Development

It is often stated that some 70% of all change projects fail. Though this figure can be disputed, it is nevertheless clear that managing change is one of the most difficult tasks facing organizations today. In response to this, writers offer a wide range of theories and advice designed to aid managers and scholars in understanding and managing change, but which seem merely to overwhelm them with a profusion of competing and conflicting advice and approaches. In many respects, change is a field which epitomises the ‘rigor-relevance’ debate. We have many approaches to change which are built on sound research and robust theories, but which appear to lack relevance for managers. We also have a vast array of nostrums, practices and tools which managers use, but which appear to lack methodological or theoretical foundations.

The aim of this series is to cut through the confusion surrounding the study and practice of change by providing comprehensive and in-depth studies of existing and emerging approaches to change. The rationale for the series is that we cannot understand organizational change sufficiently nor implement it effectively unless we can evaluate the various approaches in terms of the evidence which underpins them, what they seek to achieve and how and where they can be applied. In particular, the series seeks to address, but is not limited to, the following questions:

  • What are the emerging themes in the field of organizational change?
  • Which theories and approaches to change have stood the test of time?
  • What are the key debates within the field?
  • How has the field been influenced by and incorporated newer approaches to organizational life, such as postmodernism, social constructionism, critical realism, and complexity theories?
  • What is the current status of OD (organization development)?
  • To what extent have countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America developed their own distinct approaches to change?
  • How are developments such as social media and virtual organizations affecting the way organizations perceive and carry out change?
  • Do successful organizations adopt different approaches to change than unsuccessful ones, or do they use the same approaches but more effectively?

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Sustainable Development
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Organizational Behavior