The purpose of this study is to propose a definition and model of social sustainability within the ambit of systems theory and to test it on hospitality e-distributors. The study suggests that social sustainability arises through the congruence among the interrelated components of social innovation, societal demand and social stakeholders in a transformation model and it can be assessed to whether and how this congruence addresses to the equity principles.
The study provides a case analysis on two selected hospitality e-distributors – Booking.com and Airbnb. The data obtained from a video-based content on managerial interviews were triangulated with the data of corporate disclosures and expert views derived from a focus group study.
The study reveals that both companies affect the intra-generational, procedural and geographical equity principles across physical and virtual communities so long as they take the advantage of their strategic positions. While Booking.com transforms its own industry, Airbnb disrupts the entire system by blurring the boundaries between market and non-market as well as touristic and non-touristic areas.
The study contributes to the practitioners by showing how to configure and assess the social sustainability of their organizations at the different contexts.
The study provides a holistic perspective on social sustainability by linking the concept with social innovation, societal demand and social stakeholders and highlighting its contribution to equity principles.
Despite the proliferation of studies, the authors have very little understanding on the social pillar of sustainability. The current study fills the gap by addressing these conceptualization and measurement challenges in the literature.
Turker, D. and Ozdemir, G. (2019), "Modeling social sustainability: analysis of hospitality e-distributors", Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/SAMPJ-02-2019-0035Download as .RIS
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