IGP Data

Building a green learning organisation

27 October 2022

Beatrice R Bekar

The COVID-19 pandemic is emerging as a window of opportunity, urging governments and organisations worldwide to accelerate the transition towards a green economy. Despite the attempts towards a green transition, transforming current practices and embedding sustainability within daily work routines still presents organisations with major challenges. These are partly due to a traditionally top-down, siloed and reactive approach to sustainability innovation, often emerging from new government regulations, market sanctions, or leadership changes. Such an approach often results in a symbolic adoption of sustainability which fails to create a sense of distributed problem-solving, wasting employees’ innovative potential in delivering substantial social and environmental value. To understand how organisations can prevent such symbolic adoption of sustainability, experts have studied organisational designs that ensure bottom-up innovation processes, continuous learning and resilience. This dissertation investigates how employee-driven innovation (EDI) can be harnessed for organisational sustainability transitions (ST). Through a combination of academic literature and practice-based knowledge gathered across three semi-structured interviews, this qualitative study will explain how EDI can contribute to organisational sustainability transitions and will unpack which factors, mechanisms or processes can initiate such an innovation process.

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