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Article
Publication date: 11 August 2021

Rebekka Küchler and Christian Herzig

As members of the food supply chain, food manufacturers acquire power and hold responsibility for the sustainable transformation of our food systems. Sustainability

Abstract

Purpose

As members of the food supply chain, food manufacturers acquire power and hold responsibility for the sustainable transformation of our food systems. Sustainability assessment and reporting frameworks function as instruments to shape sustainable transformation processes. The purpose of the paper is to investigate the suitability for food manufacturing companies and their connectivity with the up- and downstream food supply chain.

Design/methodology/approach

The first section of the study explores the need for holistic, company-based sustainability frameworks in the food manufacturing sector from the literature. The second part compares seven frameworks, in terms of content and supply chain connectivity.

Findings

Food sector specificity demands the inclusion of topics specific to food systems. Furthermore, none of the investigated frameworks fulfil both food sector specificity and full connectivity with the up- and downstream supply chain.

Research limitations/implications

As a limitation to this work, comparison of the frameworks at topic level instead of indicator level is considered. The findings call for more harmonised and integrated sustainability assessment throughout the food supply chain.

Practical implications

The framework a food manufacturer should apply depends on their motivation behind conducting the sustainability assessment and reporting. Evidence is provided from various perspectives and with regard to key issues such as content, certification and communication.

Originality/value

No comparison between sustainability frameworks has been made yet from the supply chain perspective of food manufacturers.

Article
Publication date: 12 October 2021

Job Momoh, Joseph Chelemu Kangwa, Chika Udeaja, Jin Ruoyu and Rafiu Dimeji Seidu

Developing countries are currently on the verge of adopting principles used in achieving a sustainable urban future. As the urban population increases due to factors like…

Abstract

Purpose

Developing countries are currently on the verge of adopting principles used in achieving a sustainable urban future. As the urban population increases due to factors like urban–rural migration, increase in birth rate, migration, industrialisation, commercialisation, amongst others, there is a drastic need to adopt sustainability principles within urban spaces. To understand how sustainability can be achieved, there is a need to recognise how developed countries have designed assessment tools that work within their context which can inform how developing countries can work on their assessment tool. Urban neighbourhood sustainability assessment tools are used to reflect on the overall goal of the project and the most important indicators needed to be implemented within the project. Sustainability indicators are used to measure the levels and progress at which sustainability has been implemented within a project based on the data collected and these results can be used to make informed decisions. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the development of urban sustainability assessment tool.

Design/methodology/approach

This research investigates the techniques utilised in developing an urban sustainability assessment tool Sustainable Composite Cities Environmental Evaluation and Design (SUCCEED-ND) tool within the Nigerian context. The data instrument used includes a questionnaire survey that sampled 50 correspondents, and the results were used to develop an urban assessment tool tailored for the Nigerian countries.

Findings

The findings used social, environmental, economic and planning sustainability dimensions in the design of the assessment tool which composes of 21 core sustainability indicators and 105 indicators to develop SUCCEED-ND tool.

Originality/value

This work developed the first urban sustainability assessment tool for the Nigerian urban environment. The result is meant to evaluate and implement sustainability within existing and proposed neighbourhood development.

Details

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, vol. 40 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-4708

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 19 February 2021

Verónica León Bravo, Antonella Moretto and Federico Caniato

To develop a roadmap of sustainability practices and assessment mechanisms to advance in the sustainable supply chain (SSC) performance assessment in the food supply…

1825

Abstract

Purpose

To develop a roadmap of sustainability practices and assessment mechanisms to advance in the sustainable supply chain (SSC) performance assessment in the food supply chain. The analysis is grounded on the contingency and stakeholder theories.

Design/methodology/approach

The study follows a multiple case study approach analyzing the sustainability practices implementation and assessment across different supply chain stages in the food industry in Italy. The set of cases comprises 12 companies in the fresh fruit and vegetables (FFV), and seven companies in the “Balsamic Vinegar of Modena” (BVM) supply chains.

Findings

The sustainability practices and assessment in each company in both supply chains according to their objectives are identified. Different stakeholder pressures for sustainability implementation and assessment are analyzed. The contingency factors that foster sustainability assessment are outlined as well. Finally, the study develops a roadmap with five levels of progress considering the groups of practices implemented and the type of assessment applied.

Practical implications

The roadmap is a decision-making tool for planning and monitoring progress on SSC performance along five possible levels of progress. While identifying the assessment mechanisms implemented for different kind of sustainability practices, companies can develop a strategy according to their aims and capabilities and stakeholder's expectations.

Originality/value

The novelties in this study are threefold. First, the roadmap with five levels of progress. Second, investigating two different food supply chains that allowed for a broader view regarding sustainability practices and assessment. Third, the adoption of stakeholder and contingency theories in SSC studies.

Article
Publication date: 2 May 2019

Jenni Puroila and Hannele Mäkelä

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the socio-political role of materiality assessment in sustainability reporting literature and discuss the potential of…

2357

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to contribute to the socio-political role of materiality assessment in sustainability reporting literature and discuss the potential of materiality assessment to advance more inclusive accounting and reporting practices, in particular critical dialogic accounting.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on literature on the concept of materiality together with insights from stakeholder engagement, commensuration and critical dialogic accounting the paper analyses disclosure on materiality in sustainability reports. Empirically, qualitative content analysis is used to analyse 44 sustainability reports from the leading companies.

Findings

The authors argue that, first, the technic-rational approach to materiality portrays the assessment as a neutral and value-free measurement, and second, the materiality matrix presents the multiple stakeholders as having a unified understanding of what is considered important in corporate sustainability. Thus, the technic-rational approach to the materiality assessment, reinforced with the use of the matrix is a value-laden judgement of what matters in corporate sustainability and narrows down rather than opens up the complexity of the assessment of material sustainability issues, stakeholder engagement and the societal pursuit of sustainable development.

Originality/value

The understandings and implications of the concept of materiality are ambiguous and wide-reaching, as, through constituting the legitimised set of claims and information on corporate sustainable performance, it impacts our understanding of sustainable development at large, and affects the corporate and policy-level transition towards sustainability. Exploring insights from critical dialogic accounting help us to elaborate on the conceptions and practical implications of materiality assessment that enhance stakeholder engagement in a democratic, rather than managerial, spirit.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 32 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 3 April 2018

Kuldip Singh Sangwan, Vikrant Bhakar and Abhijeet K. Digalwar

The purpose of this paper is to develop a sustainability readiness assessment model and a sustainability assessment model for manufacturing organizations.

1055

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a sustainability readiness assessment model and a sustainability assessment model for manufacturing organizations.

Design/methodology/approach

The proposed models have been developed using resource-based theory along the integrated supply chain. The models are based on resources sustainability (people, money, material, energy, infrastructure, water, and air), critical factors of sustainability (product, process and policies), sustainability dimensions (environment, economic, and social), and life cycle sustainability (integrated supply chain).

Findings

The paper presents an integrated assessment system which includes: product life cycle, resources, critical factors (product, process, and policy), key performance indicators, and their interrelationship with sustainability dimensions. The three critical factors and all the important resources required by a manufacturing organization along the integrated supply chain are identified. The readiness assessment model is user friendly and effective to guide the managers to identify the weak areas of sustainability.

Research limitations/implications

The proposed model for readiness assessment is tested and in an automotive manufacturing organization but the sustainability assessment model is conceptual and it requires validation by implementing the same in an organization to understand its effectiveness.

Practical implications

The readiness assessment model can help the top management to decide whether the organizational orientation is correct to improve sustainability. The easy to use models can be used by the decision/policy makers and independent bodies to assess, compare and benchmark the products, processes or organizations and thus affect public policies and attitudes.

Originality/value

This study has developed, for the first time, a sustainability readiness assessment model. The resource-based theory has been applied along the integrated supply chain.

Details

Benchmarking: An International Journal, vol. 25 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-5771

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Dan Beveridge, Marcia McKenzie, Philip Vaughter and Tarah Wright

This paper aims to report on a census of high-level sustainability initiatives at all accredited post-secondary institutions in Canada by documenting the institutions that…

1217

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to report on a census of high-level sustainability initiatives at all accredited post-secondary institutions in Canada by documenting the institutions that have undertaken sustainability assessments, have signed one or more sustainability declarations, have sustainability offices or officers or have sustainability policies. The aim was to better understand the broad-scale patterns of commitments by post-secondary institutions to these sustainability initiatives by exploring the interrelationships among them, and with geographic and institutional characteristics.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected on existing high-level sustainability initiatives at Canada’s 220 accredited post-secondary institutions. Patterns in the data were analyzed using exploratory statistical techniques. This paper proposes a sustainability initiative score to help understand the diversity and patterns of sustainability initiative uptake.

Findings

Institutions located in larger communities, and in British Columbia and Québec, tended to have higher sustainability initiative scores. Institutions in Saskatchewan and the territories had the lowest sustainability initiative scores. It was found that sustainability office(r)s, assessments and policies co-occurred disproportionately, potentially suggesting positive reinforcement mechanisms. On the other hand, having signed a declaration was not strongly linked to other sustainability initiatives. Terminological preference had shifted from “environment” and “sustainable development” to “sustainability”.

Research limitations/implications

The scope was limited to a discrete set of high-level sustainability initiatives appropriate for a nation-wide census, at a moment in time, and is therefore not exhaustive in subject or temporal extent. This broad-scale comparative analysis compels further study into the relationship between the sustainability policy environment and sustainability practices on the ground, as well as implications for how post-secondary institutions engage with sustainability. The patterns and interrelationships this paper discovered help to structure future critical and comparative in-depth analyses of sustainability policies and practices within post-secondary education.

Originality/value

Almost no extensive, comparative empirical studies of sustainability policy and practice in post-secondary institutions exist. This void is addressed by documenting and analyzing high-level sustainability initiatives across all accredited post-secondary institutions in Canada.

Details

International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, vol. 16 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1467-6370

Keywords

Abstract

Details

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

Abstract

Details

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

Book part
Publication date: 27 May 2020

Margaret Jollands

There is a growing demand in industry for engineering graduates who can think “sustainably.” However, there are many barriers to developing assessment that fosters…

Abstract

There is a growing demand in industry for engineering graduates who can think “sustainably.” However, there are many barriers to developing assessment that fosters sustainability learning in engineering classrooms. There is no consensus on the definition of sustainability and its key competencies and teaching resources are limited.

Staff are unclear about what to teach, how to teach, and how to assess learning. Assessment is an integral part of teaching and learning and should be planned from the earliest stages, but this is rarely done. Engineering relies heavily on traditional assessments such as tests and examinations, but these are known to encourage surface learning. Sustainability is complex, multidisciplinary, and needs context, which requires higher-order thinking characteristic of deep learning.

Current assessment types for sustainability include examinations, case study, concept maps, and project-based learning. However, more research is needed to develop best practice assessments. Recommendations for teaching approach are to use a rigorous approach to instructional design, use a systems approach, and use a teaching model that promotes deep learning, incorporates context, and promotes alignment of learning objectives and assessment. Community-oriented assessments are recommended that feature the interdisciplinarity and complexity of sustainability and promote higher-order thinking.

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