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Article
Publication date: 28 May 2021

Kofi Agyekum, Seth Yeboah Botchway, Emmanuel Adinyira and Alex Opoku

Recent reports based on the sustainable development goals (SDGs) have revealed that no country is in line with achieving the targets of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable…

Abstract

Purpose

Recent reports based on the sustainable development goals (SDGs) have revealed that no country is in line with achieving the targets of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development, with the slowest progress being witnessed mainly on goals that are focused on the environment. This study examines environmental performance indicators for assessing the sustainability of building projects.

Design/methodology/approach

The study uses an explanatory sequential design with an initial quantitative instrument phase, followed by a qualitative data collection phase. An extensive critical comparative review of the literature resulted in the identification of ten environmental sustainability indicators. One hundred and sixty-seven questionnaire responses based upon these indicators from the Ghanaian construction industry were received. Data were coded with SPSS v22, analysed descriptively, and via inferential analysis. These data were then validated through semi-structured interviews with six interviewees who are fellows of their respective professional bodies, a senior academic (professor in construction project delivery) and a government official. Data obtained from the semi-structured validation interviews were analysed through the side-by-side comparison of the qualitative data with the quantitative data.

Findings

The findings from the study suggest that all the indicators were important in assessing building projects' environmental sustainability across the entire life cycle. Key among the identified indicators is the effects of the project on “water quality, air quality, energy use and conservation, and environmental compliance and management”. The interviewees further agreed to and confirmed the importance of these identified indicators for assessing the environmental sustainability of building projects in Ghana.

Originality/value

Compared to existing studies, this study adopts the exploratory sequential design to identify and examine the critical indicators in assessing the environmental sustainability across the entire lifecycle of building projects in a typical developing country setting, i.e. Ghana. It reveals areas of prime concern in the drive to place the local construction industry on a trajectory towards achieving environmental sustainability.

Details

Smart and Sustainable Built Environment, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-6099

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Article
Publication date: 19 July 2021

Yusuf A. Adenle, Mohammed Abdul-Rahman and Oluwole A. Soyinka

As one of the buzzwords in the present age with considerable impacts in tertiary institutions, social media use in online teaching, learning and information dissemination…

Abstract

Purpose

As one of the buzzwords in the present age with considerable impacts in tertiary institutions, social media use in online teaching, learning and information dissemination have been extensively discussed in extant literature. This paper aims to explore the existing campus sustainability appraisal (CSA) tools to identify the length at which social media has been used, especially in environmental sustainability indicators’ selection and empirical verification.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology is mainly based on a desktop study involving comprehensive review and content analysis of existing CSA tools’ documents. Webpage content analysis of selected sustainability monitoring and tracking system in higher education institutions was also conducted.

Findings

The tools' content analysis reveals insufficient utilization of social media data and platforms in campus sustainability environmental-dimension indicators selection. To bridge this identified research gap, social media user-generated content for appraising the campus-wide environmental sustainability indicators preference in tertiary institutions was proposed.

Practical implications

The adoption and modification of this study’s proposed approach by tertiary institutions, especially in sub-Saharan African countries, could help address most campus-wide environmental challenges raised, commented on and discussed on social media.

Originality/value

This study contributes to knowledge gaps by revealing the extent of social media utilization in extant tools. With the expanding utilization of different social media platforms by various tertiary institutions worldwide, their administrators' responsibility is to put these social media data into fair use.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

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Abstract

Details

Sustainability Assessment
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78743-481-3

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2005

Paul J. Upham and Julia N. Mills

This paper aims to propose and assess a core set of environmental and operational sustainability indicators for airport benchmarking, based on research conducted for a…

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4964

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to propose and assess a core set of environmental and operational sustainability indicators for airport benchmarking, based on research conducted for a decision support tool designed to support airport environmental and operational sustainability. Seeks to make recommendations on the external use of sustainability indicators in stakeholder communication, based on a separate survey of the way in which UK airports use environmental and sustainability benchmarking reports.

Design/methodology/approach

The indicators are designed to minimise additional data collection demands while reflecting sustainability theory to a practicable extent.

Findings

Bringing core environmental and operational indicators together helps to make their inter‐relationship explicit. The indicators are a minimum set, and their limitations with respect to sustainability are made explicit.

Originality/value

Reports on a survey of the current extent of, and approaches to, stakeholder communication undertaken by airports in the UK, particularly external use of environmental and sustainability benchmarking results.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 12 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2016

Luís Miguel D. F. Ferreira, Cristóvão Silva and Susana Garrido Azevedo

Companies need to excel in many areas to achieve a competitive advantage. This, together with pressure imposed by regulators and customers regarding sustainability…

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2419

Abstract

Purpose

Companies need to excel in many areas to achieve a competitive advantage. This, together with pressure imposed by regulators and customers regarding sustainability concerns, leads companies to address sustainability in an integrated fashion across all management processes. The purpose of this paper is to suggest a model for the assessment of the environmental performance of a supply chain, based on four perspectives used in the balanced scorecard. Performance indicators are proposed based on the literature, as well as on the ISO 14031 and GRI standards, and were validated by a panel of experts.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a literature review on models for environmental performance management a novel model to assess the environmental performance of the supply chains (Env_BSC_4_SCPM) is proposed. Data collected from the first tier suppliers of an automotive industry case study are used to test the proposed model.

Findings

The model developed was tested in a case study company, showing it ability to benchmark the company first tiers suppliers and products. The model is also useful as a decision support tool to define actions to be taken in order to improve the global environment performance of the supply chain.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed model was developed to evaluate the environmental performance of supply chains. Nevertheless, the case study only takes account of the first tier suppliers, due to difficulties associated to data collecting for the other elements in the supply chain. Widening the frontiers, the next phase may include the application of this model to second, third and lower tier suppliers, as well as the final customer. Improvements in the model could also include the construction of a composite index to measure the environmental supply chain performance.

Practical implications

The paper provides a model that can be used by practitioners to evaluate the environmental performance of their supply chain and to decide on actions to be taken to improve it.

Originality/value

As stated by several authors, there has been limited research conducted in the field of environmental evaluation of supply chains. This paper proposes a novel model for the environmental performance of the supply chain and tests it using industrial empirical data.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

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Article
Publication date: 8 November 2018

Jan Alpenberg, Tomasz Wnuk-Pel, Philip Adamsson and Johannes Petersson

The purpose of this paper is to examine why and how municipal managers and CEOs for municipally owned companies use the environmental performance indicators.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine why and how municipal managers and CEOs for municipally owned companies use the environmental performance indicators.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study approach as a research design was used. In total, 18 semi-structured interviews were conducted among managers for administrative departments and municipal company CEOs.

Findings

This study found that the environmental performance indicators are used by department managers mainly for resource allocation, control and for teaching the employees. The CEOs of the municipal companies use the environmental indicators for communicating with external stakeholders and see the indicators primarily as marketing tools. The main reason why the environmental performance indicators are used in the municipality can be the strong demand from the local politicians to push the “green agenda,” and therefore the managers have to comply.

Research limitations/implications

As in any case study, generalizations from the research should be made with care, but since this is only one municipality, further research is needed to find additional evidence.

Practical implications

The findings of this study have a number of implications for future practice, and it is worth mentioning that clear guidelines for how the information could be made more useful for managers at the managerial level in Växjö municipality (VM) are requested for both the municipal managers and the CEOs.

Social implications

Overall, this study strengthens the idea that environmental performance indicators could be used to a larger extent for communicating with external stakeholders both for municipal departments and companies.

Originality/value

The research adds to the literature by examining different patterns of using environmental performance indicators in a unique setting – in VM, which is called “the greenest city in Europe” and is one of the “pioneers” in environmental work and extensively uses performance indicators.

Details

Baltic Journal of Management, vol. 14 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5265

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 2006

Christina Diakaki, Evangelos Grigoroudis and Maria Stabouli

The aim of the paper is to propose a method that may assist organisations in the task of selecting appropriate indicators for their environmental performance evaluation procedures.

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3126

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of the paper is to propose a method that may assist organisations in the task of selecting appropriate indicators for their environmental performance evaluation procedures.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed method is based on the principles of risk assessment, a key technique in the protection and management of the environment. When well‐constructed, it may cover all aspects of an organisation's activities, thus providing a sound base for the identification of the most significant indicators to be considered for the environmental performance evaluation.

Findings

The proposed approach starts from an initial set of numerous indicators. Each indicator is identified in order to monitor and assess the progress towards the achievement of a goal that has been set in relation to a particular environmental aspect of the activities of the considered organisation. For each indicator, a related environmental risk is assessed that may then be used to prioritise the indicators, and identify the most significant ones as far as the environmental aspects of the considered organisation are concerned.

Originality/value

Despite the fact that the environmental performance evaluation has been considered to be both significant and useful, the approaches proposed, so far, are very generic and do not provide actual assistance to the organisations that wish to adopt and apply such procedures. The main advantage of the proposed methodology lies exactly at this point. It facilitates the process of environmental performance evaluation providing substantial assistance to one of the most important stages that is to decide which particular indicators will be considered.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 17 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2005

Rhys Rowland‐Jones and Malcolm Cresser

The aim of this research is to develop a model for environmental management from which quantifiable indication of overall environmental performance for an organisation may…

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1508

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this research is to develop a model for environmental management from which quantifiable indication of overall environmental performance for an organisation may be derived.

Design/methodology/approach

The links between environmental performance and financial performance are considered. Several research methods are described which consider pollution performance. However, it is clear that no single method wholly reflects quantitative pollution management (QPM). The initial model for QPM is derived, and the weightings that should be allocated for the individual and combined categories in achieving the indicator of pollution performance are established.

Findings

The paper establishes a methodology for the derivation of a QPM indicator that provides a numeric variable, by using numerical values that have been obtained from a set of linguistic values evaluated against determinations of prescribed events. The robust nature of the developed QPM indicator is provided by means of a prescribed methodology where the outcome indicator is constructed from the results of the audit and the inter‐relationship of the individual components. This inter‐relationship of numeric and linguistic variables encourages the use of modified set theory in which an individual could have a degree of membership ranged over a continuum of values.

Practical implications

The development of a quantifiable pollution indicator enables customers/consumers to make a purchase decision that takes into account environmental concerns. These unique QPM indicators will assist in promoting a sustainable management strategy with preventative approaches to pollution. Under these circumstances, a QPM indicator would allow industrial and regulatory strategies to be implemented beyond the traditional boundaries of pollution control and waste management. It would give a broader perspective on performance, and encourage application of preventive technologies to reduce pollutant and waste loads, while also promoting environment‐friendly products and services through openly available quantitative indicators. The derived indicator will be limited to the state of a particular process at a given point in time, and as such will need recalculation over given time intervals. This methodology enables the organisation to demonstrate improvement, if applicable. Monitoring tools should in any case be an aid to strategy formulation, not a determinant of it.

Originality/value

This study will assist in allowing environmental performance to become a strategic factor in business planning. Direct comparisons may be made between the operational characteristics of organisations, and how those organisations impact on the environment via pollution, providing direct business benefits to organisations that manage their business and protect the environment.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 16 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

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Article
Publication date: 27 May 2020

João Alexandre Paschoalin Filho, Claudia Maria da Silva Bezerra and Antonio José Guerner Dias

The civil construction industry has vital importance to Brazil's economy. However, this sector is also responsible for the environmental impacts. Governments have been…

Abstract

Purpose

The civil construction industry has vital importance to Brazil's economy. However, this sector is also responsible for the environmental impacts. Governments have been taking measures aiming to mitigate these impacts. Among these, the elaboration and implementation of civil construction solid waste management plans can be highlighted. However, these plans still lack standardizations and tools for their evaluation. Environmental indicators proposal for construction solid waste management plans assessment is presented to verify the adhesion of these to environmental laws, technical standards and green building certification systems recommendations.

Design/methodology/approach

The construction solid waste management plans of three construction works were evaluated by the proposed indicators to verify the procedures related, generating, in the end, a scale between 0 and 5. After that, plans were compared with each other.

Findings

The proposed indicators have made possible the evaluation of the environmental practices performed for three different construction works. By the proposed indicators, the environmental practices were compared to technical standards and legislation suggested procedures.

Practical implications

As a contribution, the evaluation proposal presented may help the construction industry as well as the public authority to evaluate the construction solid waste management plans currently elaborated, so that these can offer a quality improvement and more effective environmental measures.

Originality/value

Methodologies that guide the evaluation of construction solid waste management plans can be beneficial for the construction companies, which can improve the quality of the plans elaborated internally and verify the effectiveness of the plans elaborated by specialized consultancies. In general, most of the construction solid waste management plans are prepared with the purpose of only complying with the legislation, more specifically of the National Council for the Environment, Resolution 307/2002.

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 31 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

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Article
Publication date: 23 November 2012

Didem Dizdaroglu, Tan Yigitcanlar and Les Dawes

As a consequence of rapid urbanisation and globalisation, cities have become the engines of population and economic growth. Hence, natural resources in and around the…

Abstract

Purpose

As a consequence of rapid urbanisation and globalisation, cities have become the engines of population and economic growth. Hence, natural resources in and around the cities have been exposed to externalities of urban development processes. This paper introduces a new sustainability assessment approach that is tested in a pilot study. The paper aims to assist policy‐makers and planners investigating the impacts of development on environmental systems, and produce effective policies for sustainable urban development.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper introduces an indicator‐based indexing model entitled “Indexing Model for the Assessment of Sustainable Urban Ecosystems” (ASSURE). The ASSURE indexing model produces a set of micro‐level environmental sustainability indices that is aimed to be used in the evaluation and monitoring of the interaction between human activities and urban ecosystems. The model is an innovative approach designed to assess the resilience of ecosystems towards impacts of current development plans and the results serve as a guide for policy‐makers to take actions towards achieving sustainability.

Findings

The indexing model has been tested in a pilot case study within the Gold Coast City, Queensland, Australia. This paper presents the methodology of the model and outlines the preliminary findings of the pilot study. The paper concludes with a discussion on the findings and recommendations put forward for future development and implementation of the model.

Originality/value

Presently, there is a few sustainability indices developed to measure the sustainability at local, regional, national and international levels. However, due to challenges in data collection difficulties and availability of local data, there is no effective assessment model at the micro‐level that the assessment of urban ecosystem sustainability accurately. The model introduced in this paper fills this gap by focusing on parcel‐scale and benchmarking the environmental performance in micro‐level.

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