Vienna University of Economics and BusinessInstitute for Managing Sustainability
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VHB NAMA Conference 2013

Systemic Sustainability Management

Complexity, Resilience and Systems Thinking


Autumn meeting of the Section Sustainability Management of the
German Academic Association for Business Research (VHB) on 7 and 8 October 2013
at the new campus of the Vienna University of Economics and Business

The past twenty years have shown that there are no simple and quick solutions for global sustainability challenges: efficiency gains have been compensated by rebound-effects; voluntariness often ends where global competitive pressure is too high; responsibility is at risk of being discredited as an organisational facade.

Therefore, Sustainability Management has to deal with resistance, trade-offs, contradictions, ambiguities as well as the general framework of sustainable economic management. Systemic approaches provide an innovative access point for tackling these challenges. They were at the centre of the 2013 VHB Section Sustainability Management autumn meeting that took place at the new campus of the Vienna University of Economics and Business. Objectives of the autumn meeting were:

  • providing an overview on the state-of-the-field of research on systemic sustainability management
  • discussing innovative research approaches, which connect both fields – systems thinking and sustainability management
  • incorporating - in addition to theoretical and scientific results - experiences from corporate and consulting practice
  • addressing researchers from different communities, English and German speaking alike, and enable them to network even beyond that meeting
  • developing further skills in constellation work and/or scientific publishing based on the workshops following the meeting


Inspiring key notes and presentations ...
Exceptional presentations fostered high quality exchange of knowledge. Top-tier experts on sustainability management were present as key note speakers. Their contributions were complemented by high-quality presentations covering the fields of Systems Thinking; Supply Chain Management; Resilience; Performance, Decision Support and Reporting; Human Resources; and Strategic Management.

... networking opportunities ...
Interactive formats, such as the Knowledge Market Place, provided ample opportunity for networking and exchange with colleagues, members of the largest German-speaking academic network in business administration, and representatives from the consulting and advisory sector.

... and two exciting thematic workshops
Two thematic workshops on “Systems constellations” and “Publish or perish” (only in German) on 9th October complemented the conference.

Programme (PDF, 521 kB)

Conference proceedings (PDF, 1.6 MB)

Key note presentations

Georg Müller-Christ, Universität Bremen:
Der Umgang mit Komplexität und Widersprüchen im Nachhaltigkeitsmanagment
Nigel Roome, Vlerick Business School:
Managment for Sustainable Development: Insights into a Systems Problem
Joana Krizanits, Unternehmensberaterin und Trainerin für systemische Unternehmensentwicklung:
Systemische Organisationsentwicklung und Management
Gandolfo Dominici, Università degli Studi di Palermo, B.S. Lab:
Sustainability according to the Viable Systems Perspective
Hans-Ulrich Zabel, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg:
Nachhaltigkeitsorientierte Unternehmensethik – systemische Konzeption einer integrierten Individual- und Institutionenethik


Track A: Systems Thinking (session chair: Hans-Ulrich Zabel, Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg)

Track B: Supply Chain Management (session chair: Stefan Seuring, Universität Kassel)

Track C: Resilience (session chair: Andre Martinuzzi, Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien)

Track D: Human Resources and Leadership (session chair: Joana Krizanits, Unternehmensberaterin)

Track E: Performance, Decision Support and Reporting (session chair: Georg Müller-Christ, Universität Bremen)

Track F: Strategic Management and Change (session chair: Gandolfo Dominici, Università degli Studi di Palermo)




André Martinuzzi & Norma Schönherr
Institute for Managing Sustainability
WU Vienna University of Economics and Business
Welthandelsplatz 1, Building D1, 1020 Vienna, Österreich
Tel. +43-1-313 36 - 5454
Fax +43-1-313 36 - 90 - 5454

Valid CSS!(c) 2016 Institute for Managing Sustainability
Vienna University of Economics and Business, Welthandelsplatz 1, Building D1, 1020 Vienna