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Green teams and the management of environmental change in a UK county council

Colin Beard (School of Leisure Management, Sheffield Hallam University, UK, and)
Stephen Rees (Environmental Management Unit, Strategic Planning Directorate, Kent County Council, UK)

Environmental Management and Health

ISSN: 0956-6163

Article publication date: 1 March 2000

Abstract

Explores the evolution of a participative, interdepartmental staff “green team” approach to the solving of environmental problems and a move towards a culture change within one of the largest UK local authorities. Reveals how Kent County Council (KCC), over a period of several years, used the largely voluntary effort of a group of dedicated individuals to help with a corporate move towards sustainability. Explores the management of these people in the process of cultural change and acknowledges that grass‐roots participative environmental change can be slow to break through organisational inertia and can be susceptible to collapse. Shows how efforts can be undermined both by a lack of a clear corporate direction and by events beyond their own control. Also focuses on the role of external trainers, as change agents, and their contribution to the environmental management programme, in supporting the emergence, motivation and maturation of these green teams. Finally, in an attempt to measure the success of green teams, some of the major team outputs are mentioned, and concludes with comments on the future of the teams. The use of green teams is an approach now adopted by a number of organisations but “the connection between environmental teams and the management of change is often overlooked”.

Keywords

Citation

Beard, C. and Rees, S. (2000), "Green teams and the management of environmental change in a UK county council", Environmental Management and Health, Vol. 11 No. 1, pp. 27-38. https://doi.org/10.1108/09566160010314161

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited