To read this content please select one of the options below:

The three enablers of sustainability intelligence

Jan Beyne (Sustainable Transformation Lab, Antwerp Management School, Antwerp, Belgium and Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium)
Lars Moratis (Antwerp Management School, Antwerp, Belgium and Breda University of Applied Sciences, Breda, Netherlands)
Ans De Vos (Antwerp Management School, Antwerp, Belgium and University of Antwerp, Antwerp, Belgium)

Journal of International Education in Business

ISSN: 2046-469X

Article publication date: 10 February 2022

Issue publication date: 20 April 2022




Sustainability intelligence is critical for the prosperity of societies worldwide, for conservation of the natural world, for achieving future business success and for the credibility of the concept of sustainability itself. This study aims to present the concept of sustainability intelligence by expounding on three proposed enablers shaping this concept – self-awareness, global perspective and societal consciousness. The main point of this paper is to conduct inquiry into the topic, gather information on enablers for sustainability intelligence and share that information with readers.


This study collected information from a pool of respondents to answer this research question: Which enablers are imperative to pursue sustainability intelligence? By using a sustainability intelligence questionnaire (SIQ), the authors argue why these enablers could bring about large-scale sustainable transformation and new insights about sustainable practices. The SIQ consists of 15 statements from strongly disagree to strongly agree, with five scale points, exploring the three enablers.


The findings show that the respondents gave the greatest importance to societal consciousness, followed by global perspective and then self-awareness as important enablers for sustainability intelligence. In line with previous studies, it is worth noting these enablers have reciprocal reinforcing relationships. While the proposed enablers for sustainability intelligence could prove a helpful catalyst, the authors believe it is necessary to secure an ongoing incisive critical approach towards enablers and competencies needed to positively impact the sustainable development goals.

Research limitations/implications

We acknowledge there are some limitations using the current methodology. There is for example no control group. Also, this survey was only a-posteriori. It would be useful to execute a survey before the start of the academic year. Although we received some qualitative feedback linked to our research questions, it would be useful to add more in-depth qualitative research, by executing interviews with students. With these limitations, we recognize some room for improvement in our methodology.


This paper explores the wider practical implications of the sustainability intelligence enablers. The further development of the SIQ which might serve as an instrument that provides individual reports that highlight their unique skills and opportunities to shape a better world.



Beyne, J., Moratis, L. and Vos, A.D. (2022), "The three enablers of sustainability intelligence", Journal of International Education in Business, Vol. 15 No. 1, pp. 74-88.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles