IN PURSUIT OF SUSTAINABILITY: TOWARDS SUSTAINABLE FUTURE THROUGH EDUCATION
Higher Education Institutions increasingly include sustainable development concepts in their programs to teach their students about sustainability. This tendency is encouraged by the Sustainable Development Goals. Today’s technological age implies concerns about sustainability including ethical decision-making and responsible behavior of organizations and leaders. Moreover, the Covid-19 pandemic impacted sustainable development and highlighted the need for a more sustainable future. Sustainability can positively change value culture, the environment, and improve the quality of life. Although incorporating sustainability into the curriculum creates challenges for universities, it can also offer opportunities for educational institutions. Universities have an important role to play in the transition towards sustainability. They must not only incorporate the concept into research and teaching but also implement it on campus. This review article provides a brief overview of sustainable development in higher education institutions and discusses how universities adopt and apply sustainability principles. It also explores how sustainability can be integrated into various disciplines and sheds light on students’ and academics’ attitudes toward Education for Sustainability.
Ahmad, T. (2020). Students reflect on the role of ethics in business management", World Journal of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, 16 (2), 71-79. https://doi.org/10.1108/WJEMSD-05-2020-112.
Barth, M. (2013). Many roads lead to sustainability: A process‐oriented analysis of change in higher education. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 14(2), 160-175. https://doi.org/10.1108/14676371311312879.
Batista, A., & Francisco, A. (2018). Organizational Sustainability Practices: A Study of the Firms Listed by the Corporate Sustainability Index. Sustainability, 10(1), 226. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10010226.
Buckley, J. B., & Michel, J. O. (2020). An Examination of Higher Education Institutional Level Learning Outcomes Related to Sustainability. Innovative Higher Education, 45(3), 201-217. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10755-019-09493-7.
Burton, E., Goldsmith, J., & Mattei, N. (2018). How to teach computer ethics through science fiction. Communications of the ACM, 61(8), 54-64. https://doi.org/10.1145/3154485.
Burton, E., Goldsmith, J., Koenig, S., Kuipers, B., Mattei, N., & Walsh, T. (2017). Ethical Considerations in Artificial Intelligence Courses. AI Magazine, 38(2), 22-34. https://doi.org/10.1609/aimag.v38i2.2731.
Ceulemans, K., Molderez, I., & Van Liedekerke, L. (2015). Sustainability reporting in higher education: A comprehensive review of the recent literature and paths for further research. Journal of Cleaner Production, 106, 127-143. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2014.09.052.
Christie, B.A., Miller, K.K., Cooke, R., & White, J.G. (2015). Environmental sustainability in higher education: What do academics think? Environmental Education Research, 21(5), 655–686. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2013.879697.
Coleman, K., & Gould, R. (2019). Exploring just sustainability across the disciplines at one university. The Journal of Environmental Education, 50(3), 223-237. https://doi.org/10.1080/00958964.2019.1582471.
Cooper, S., Parkes, C., & Blewitt, J. (2014). Can accreditation help a leopard change its spots? Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 27(2), 234-258. https://doi.org/10.1108/aaaj-07-2012-01062.
Cortese, A.D. (2003). The critical role of higher education in creating a sustainable future. Planning for Higher Education. 31(3), 15–22. https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.739.3611&rep=rep1&type=pdf .
Dieleman, H., & Huisingh, D. (2006). Games by which to learn and teach about sustainable development: Exploring the relevance of games and experiential learning for sustainability. Journal of Cleaner Production, 14(9), 837-847. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2005.11.031.
Dredge, D., Benckendor , P., Day, M., Gross, M. J., Walo, M., Weeks, P., & Whitelaw, P. (2012). The philosophic practitioner and the curriculum space. Annals of Tourism Research, 39(4), 2154–2176. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annals.2012.07.017.
Duarte, F. (2008). “What we learn today is how we behave tomorrow”: a study on students. Social Responsibility Journal, 4(1), 120-128. https://doi.org/10.1108/17471110810856884.
Dyment, J. E., Hill, A., & Emery, S. (2015). Sustainability as a cross-curricular priority in the Australian Curriculum: A Tasmanian investigation. Environmental Education Research, 21(8), 1105-1126. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2014.966657.
Edwards, M., Brown, P., Benn, S., Bajada, C., Perey, R., Cotton, D., Jarvis, W., Menzies, G., McGregor, I., & Waite, K. (2020). Developing sustainability learning in business school curricula - productive boundary objects and participatory processes. Environmental Education Research, 26(2), 253-274. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2019.1696948.
Elkington, J. (2004). Enter the Triple Bottom Line. In A. Henriques, & J. Richardson (Eds.) The Triple Bottom Line: Does it All Add Up. Routledge.
Farsari, I. (2021). Pedagogy for sustainable tourism: Reflections on the curriculum space of a master programme in Sweden. Journal of Teaching in Travel & Tourism, 22(1), 6-35. https://doi.org/10.1080/15313220.2021.1978127.
Figueiró, P. S., & Raufflet, E. (2015). Sustainability in higher education: A systematic review with focus on management education. Journal of Cleaner Production, 106, 22-33. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2015.04.118.
Galang, A. P. (2010). Environmental education for sustainability in higher education institutions in the Philippines. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 11(2), 173-183. https://doi.org/10.1108/14676371011031892.
Gigauri, I. (2021). Fostering responsible management and organizational ethics through business education. Knowledge - International Journal, 47(1), 65–69.
Gigauri, I., & Mushkudiani, Z. (2021). New generation’s expectations for 21st century leader and perception by young employees of leadership in organizations. European Journal of Management and Marketing Studies, 6(3). http://dx.doi.org/10.46827/ejmms.v6i3.1054
Gigauri, I., Panait, M., & Palazzo, M. (2021). Teaching Corporate Social Responsibility and Business Ethics at Economic Programs. LUMEN Proceedings, 15, 24-37. https://doi.org/10.18662/lumproc/gekos2021/3.
Gretzel, U., Fuchs, M., Baggio, R., Hoepken, W., Law, R., Neidhardt, J., Pesonen, J., Zanker, M., & Xiang, Z. (2020). E-Tourism beyond COVID-19: a call for transformative research. Information Technology & Tourism, 22(2), 187-203. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40558-020-00181-3.
Hansmann, R. (2010). “Sustainability Learning”: An Introduction to the Concept and Its Motivational Aspects. Sustainability, 2(9), 2873-2897. https://doi.org/10.3390/su2092873.
Hanson, W.R. & Moore, J.R. (2013). Ethical decision-making by business students: factors of influence. EJBO Electronic Journal of Business Ethics and Organizational Studies, 18 (1), 15-26. http://ejbo.jyu.fi/pdf/ejbo_vol18_no1_pages_15-26.pdf.
Higgins-Desbiolles, F., Carnicelli, S., Krolikowski, C., Wijesinghe, G., & Boluk, K. (2019). Degrowing tourism: Rethinking tourism. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 27(12), 1926–1944. https://doi.org/10.1080/09669582.2019.1601732.
Hjorth, P., & Bagheri, A. (2006). Navigating towards sustainable development: A system dynamics approach. Futures, 38(1), 74-92. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2005.04.005.
Icheva, M., & Vasilev, V. (2021). The time for the next steps is here – from classic to modern paradigms in motivation. International Journal of Social Science and Economic Research, 6(3), 913-922. https://doi.org/10.46609/ijsser.2021.v06i03.012.
Ioannides, D., & Gyimóthy, S. (2020). The COVID-19 crisis as an opportunity for escaping the unsustainable global tourism path. Tourism Geographies, 22(3), 624-632. https://doi.org/10.1080/14616688.2020.1763445.
Jonson, E. P., McGuire, L. M., & O’Neill, D. (2015). Teaching Ethics to Undergraduate Business Students in Australia: Comparison of Integrated and Stand-alone Approaches. Journal of Business Ethics, 132(2), 477-491. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10551-014-2330-5.
Kohl, K., Hopkins, C., Barth, M., Michelsen, G., Dlouhá, J., Razak, D.A., Abidin Bin Sanusi, Z. & Toman, I. (2022). A whole-institution approach towards sustainability: a crucial aspect of higher education’s individual and collective engagement with the SDGs and beyond. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 23 (2), 218-236. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJSHE-10-2020-0398.
Kudłak, R., & Low, K. Y. (2015). Special Issues Dedicated to CSR and Corporate Sustainability: A Review and Commentary. Long Range Planning, 48(3), 215-227. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.lrp.2015.03.002.
Larrán, M., Andrades, J., & Herrera, J. (2018). An examination of attitudes and perceptions of Spanish business and accounting students toward corporate social responsibility and sustainability themes. Revista De Contabilidad, 21(2), 196-205. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rcsar.2018.02.001.
Leal Filho, W., Will, M., Shiel, C., Paço, A., Farinha, C. S., Orlovic Lovren, V., Avila, L. V., Platje, J. (Joost), Sharifi, A., Vasconcelos, C. R., Fritzen Gomes, B. M., Lange Salvia, A., Anholon, R., Rampasso, I., Quelhas, O. L., & Skouloudis, A. (2021a). Towards a common future: Revising the evolution of university-based sustainability research literature. International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology, 28(6), 503-517. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504509.2021.1881651.
Leal Filho, W., Kovaleva, M., Fritzen Gomes, B., Fudjumdjum, H., Emblen-Perry, K., (Joost) Platje, J., Tuladhar, L., Vasconcelos, C. R., LeVasseur, T. J., Minhas, A., Farinha, C. S., Buil-Fabregá, M., Novo-Corti, I., Țîrcă, D.-M., & Da Cunha, D. A. (2021b). Sustainability practices at private universities: A state-of-the-art assessment. International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology, 28(5), 402-416. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504509.2020.1848940.
Lozano, R. (2008). Envisioning sustainability three-dimensionally. Journal of Cleaner Production, 16(17), 1838-1846. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2008.02.008.
Lozano, R. (2018). Proposing a Definition and a Framework of Organisational Sustainability: A Review of Efforts and a Survey of Approaches to Change. Sustainability, 10(4), 1157. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10041157.
Lozano, R., & Huisingh, D. (2011). Inter-linking issues and dimensions in sustainability reporting. Journal of Cleaner Production, 19(2), 99-107. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2010.01.004.
McIntosh, M., Gaalswyk, K., Keniry, L. J., & Eagan, D. J. (2008). Campus environment 2008: A national report card on sustainability in higher education. Natural Wildlife Federation, Campus Ecology. Retrieved 3 April 2022 from https://www.nwf.org/-/media/PDFs/Global-Warming/CampusReportFinal.ashx .
Michel, J. O. (2020). Toward Conceptualizing Education for Sustainability in Higher Education. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, 2020(161), 23-33. https://doi.org/10.1002/tl.20371.
Michel, J. O. (2020a). Charting students’ exposure to promising practices of teaching about sustainability across the higher education curriculum. Teaching in Higher Education, 1-27. https://doi.org/10.1080/13562517.2020.1747422.
Mulder, K. F. (2010). Don’t preach. Practice! Value laden statements in academic sustainability education. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 11(1), 74-85. https://doi.org/10.1108/14676371011010066.
Mushkudiani, Z., Gechbaia, B., Gigauri, I., & Gulua, E. (2020). Global, economic and technological trends in human resource management development. Access Journal, 1 (1), 53-60. https://doi.org/10.46656/access.2020.1.1(4).
Neumann, A. (2014). Staking a Claim on Learning: What We Should Know about Learning in Higher Education and Why. The Review of Higher Education, 37(2), 249-267. https://doi.org/10.1353/rhe.2014.0003.
Olaskoaga-Larrauri, J., Guerenabarrena-Cortazar, L., & Cilleruelo-Carrasco, E. (2021). Academic staff attitudes and barriers to integrating sustainability in the curriculum at Spanish universities (Actitudes del profesorado y barreras a la sostenibilización curricular en la universidad española). Culture and Education, 33(2), 373-396. https://doi.org/10.1080/11356405.2021.1905957.
Padilla-Meléndez, A., Del Aguila-Obra, A. R., Lockett, N., & Fuster, E. (2020). Entrepreneurial Universities and Sustainable Development. The Network Bricolage Process of Academic Entrepreneurs. Sustainability, 12(4), 1403. https://doi.org/10.3390/su12041403.
Palomo-Lovinski, N., Copeland, L., & Kim, J. (2019). Perceptions of sustainability curriculum in US fashion academia. International Journal of Fashion Design, Technology and Education, 12(3), 364-373. https://doi.org/10.1080/17543266.2019.1657968.
Pavlin, S., Kesting, T., & Baaken, T. (2016). An Integrative View on Higher Education and University-Business Cooperation in the Light of Academic Entrepreneurship. European Journal of Education, 51(1), 3-9. https://doi.org/10.1111/ejed.12168.
Perkmann, M., & Walsh, K. (2007). University–industry relationships and open innovation: Towards a research agenda. International Journal of Management Reviews, 9(4), 259-280. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2370.2007.00225.x.
Pfeffer, J. (2017). Building Sustainable Organizations: The Human Factor. Academy of Management Perspectives. 24 (1). https://doi.org/10.5465/amp.24.1.34.
Philpott, K., Dooley, L., O’Reilly, C., & Lupton, G. (2011). The entrepreneurial university: Examining the underlying academic tensions. Technovation, 31(4), 161-170. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.technovation.2010.12.003.
PRME (n.d.). Principles for Responsible Management Education. Retrieved 3 April 2022 from https://www.unprme.org/
Qian, X.-D., Xia, J., Liu, W., & Tsai, S.-B. (2018). An Empirical Study on Sustainable Innovation Academic Entrepreneurship Process Model. Sustainability, 10(6), 1974. https://doi.org/10.3390/su10061974.
Ralph, M., & Stubbs, W. (2013). Integrating environmental sustainability into universities. Higher Education, 67(1), 71-90. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10734-013-9641-9.
Ramakrishna, S. (2021). Incorporating sustainability into the university curriculum. Drying Technology, 39 (8), 985-988. https://doi.org/10.1080/07373937.2021.1908806.
Rieckmann, M. (2018). Learning to transform the world: Key competencies in education for sustainable development, In Leicht, A., Heiss, J. & Jung Byun, W. (Eds), Issues and Trends in Education for Sustainable Development. UNESCO, Paris, Retrieved 1 April 2022 from https://europa.eu/capacity4dev/file/69206/download?token=r_65VVK_ .
Sady, M., Żak, A., & Rzepka, K. (2019). The Role of Universities in Sustainability-Oriented Competencies Development: Insights from an Empirical Study on Polish Universities. Administrative Sciences, 9(3), 62. https://doi.org/10.3390/admsci9030062.
Sánchez-Carracedo, F., Ruiz-Morales, J., Valderrama-Hernández, R., Muñoz-Rodríguez, J. M., & Gomera, A. (2021). Analysis of the presence of sustainability in Higher Education Degrees of the Spanish university system. Studies in Higher Education, 46(2), 300-317. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075079.2019.1630811.
Schumacher, E. F. (1973). Small is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered. London: Blonde and Briggs.
Seraphin, H., Bah, M., Fyall, A., & Gowreesunkar, V. G. B. (2021). Tourism education in France and sustainable development goal 4 (quality education). Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, 13(1), 139–147. https://doi.org/10.1108/WHATT-08-2020-0083.
Sherman, J. D., & Burns, H. L. (2015). ‘Radically different learning’: implementing sustainability pedagogy in a university peer mentor program. Teaching in Higher Education, 20(3), 231-243. https://doi.org/10.1080/13562517.2014.993962.
Shonia, N., Mushkudiani, Z., Siradze, M. (2022). Pandemic era and its impact on the investment and business environment - Georgian case. Access to science, business, innovation in digital economy, ACCESS Press, 3(1): 7-15. https://doi.org/10.46656/access.2022.3.1(1).
Sterling, S. (2013). The Future Fit Framework: An Introductory Guide to Teaching and Learning for Sustainability in HE (Guide). Journal of Education for Sustainable Development, 7(1), 134-135. https://doi.org/10.1177/0973408213495614b.
Stough, T., Ceulemans, K., & Cappuyns, V. (2021). Unlocking the potential of broad, horizontal curricular assessments for ethics, responsibility and sustainability in business and economics higher education. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 46(2), 297-311. https://doi.org/10.1080/02602938.2020.1772718.
THE (2022). World University Rankings, Impact Ranking. Times Higher Education. https://www.timeshighereducation.com/world-university-rankings.
Tunji-Olayeni, P. F., Kajimo-Shakantu, K., Ayodele, T. O., & Philips, B. I. (2020). Students’ perception of sustainable construction: Accelerating progress towards construction education for sustainable development. International Journal of Construction Management, 1-21. https://doi.org/10.1080/15623599.2020.1861500.
ULSF (1990). The Talloires declaration 10 point action plan. Association of University Leaders for a Sustainable Future (ULSF). Retrieved 2 April 2022 from http://ulsf.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/TD.pdf .
UN (2015). Transforming Our World: The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. United Nations. Retrieved 2 April 2022 from https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/post2015/transformingourworld/publication.
United Nations (n.d.). The 17 Goals. Sustainable Development Goals. Retrieved 5 April 2022 from https://sdgs.un.org/goals.
UNCED (1992). Agenda 21. United Nations. Retrieved 2 April 2022 from https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/outcomedocuments/agenda21.
Vac, C. S., & Fitiu, A. (2017). Building Sustainable Development through Technology Transfer in a Romanian University. Sustainability, 9(11), 2042. https://doi.org/10.3390/su9112042.
Vasilev, V. (2021). Crises as a factor in increasing the effectiveness of the management and development of human capital in the organisation. Politics & Security, 5(2), 52-63. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.6378765.
Wals, A. E. (2014). Sustainability in higher education in the context of the UN DESD: A review of learning and institutionalization processes. Journal of Cleaner Production, 62, 8–15.
WCED (1987). Our Common Future: The World Commission on Environment and Development. Oxford University Press: Oxford.
Winter, J., & Cotton, D. (2012). Making the hidden curriculum visible: Sustainability literacy in higher education. Environmental Education Research, 18(6), 783-796. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2012.670207.
Copyright (c) 2022 Iza Gigauri, Valentin Vasilev, Zurab Mushkudiani
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
All articles are published in open-access and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0). Hence, authors retain copyright to the content of the articles.
CC BY 4.0 License allows content to be copied, adapted, displayed, distributed, re-published or otherwise re-used for any purpose including for adaptation and commercial use provided the content is attributed.