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Organizational sustainability: a redefinition?

Nur Fadiah Mohd Zawawi (Faculty of Entrepreneurship and Business, Universiti Malaysia Kelantan, Pengkalan Chepa, Malaysia)
Sazali Abd Wahab (Putra Business School (PBS), Universiti Putra Malaysia, Serdang, Malaysia)

Journal of Strategy and Management

ISSN: 1755-425X

Article publication date: 1 August 2019

Issue publication date: 8 August 2019




The purpose of this paper is to redefine the concept of organizational sustainability by assimilating corporate spirituality into the concept of the triple bottom line (TBL).


This paper is a conceptual paper which presents a newly coined concept for sustainable organizations as a result of a literature study on management and psychology fields. This study explores the concept of competitive advantage, research-based view (RBV) theory, spiritual leadership theory (SLT), positive environmental psychology (PEP) and human resource development (HRD) to fill the void of “soul” as an element in TBL, which is seen as a barrier that prevents organizations from being more holistically sustainable.


The paper provides new insights into the redefinition of organizational sustainability by introducing quadruple bottom line (QBL), effectively a combination of management and psychological disciplines. This paper also proposes measurements of corporate spirituality, adapted from well-established mental health research, which have been used in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders as well.

Research limitations/implications

Researchers are encouraged to test the proposed concept further.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications for the development of sustainable organizations by offering CEOs and managers corporate spirituality support with which they can make wise decisions when considering environmental, societal and economic perspectives in their operations.


The QBL concept promises to contribute significantly to the growth of more comprehensive, holistic and sustainable organizations, as well as to extend the current literature on organizational sustainability.



Mohd Zawawi, N.F. and Abd Wahab, S. (2019), "Organizational sustainability: a redefinition?", Journal of Strategy and Management, Vol. 12 No. 3, pp. 397-408.



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