administrative management | Take a holistic view of sustainability

Many organizations are now investing in climate and environmental protection. However, holistic, sustainable value creation is still a long way off, according to a current study by Sopra Steria.

In public administration and companies, the issue of climate protection has the highest relevance in terms of sustainability issues. 71 percent of public administrations are investing in “increasing the use of renewable energy sources.” This measure ranks third among companies with 65 percent approval, after “improving material and energy efficiency” (78 percent) and “reducing emissions” (70 percent). Social sustainability and values-based organizational development are much less frequently addressed.

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06/01/2022 | title

Local government sustainability management

The sustainable transformation of municipalities requires the establishment of sustainability management in town halls. Of particular importance is the triad of municipal administrations, municipal enterprises and commercial enterprises.

This is the key result of the current compass management research by Sopra Steria and the FAZ Institute entitled “Sustainability through Digitization”. For the study, 322 decision makers from public administration and business were interviewed online in April 2022. One third of the respondents work in the public sector.

Sustainability with the help of digitization

54 percent of respondents believe that digitization is an important help in achieving sustainability goals. This applies mainly to banks and insurers (63%), in the public administration respondents are more skeptical (42%). On the other hand, every second respondent from the public administration believes that society must “detach from the growth paradigm” and limit consumption to be truly sustainable. Only 27 percent of respondents from the manufacturing sector and 45 percent of financial services providers agree.

In addition, half of respondents rated comprehensive data assessment as essential to achieving climate goals and social standards. Technologies such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and cloud computing are also important as data suppliers, data processors and data distributors, according to another research result.

pressure from outside

From the perspective of companies, external factors such as the social importance of the issue, corporate culture and regulatory requirements create an increased need to act to align their value creation with sustainability. Respondents consider the following as barriers to progress on sustainability:

  • lack of resources/infrastructure,
  • lack of strategic viability,
  • lack of financial advantage,
  • lack of know-how,
  • organizational barriers,
  • lack of awareness at management level
  • and lack of political framework.

“Management levels need to be more aware that equal pay, diversity, long-term corporate governance and resource conservation have a positive impact on the books and that sustainability is also a relatively untapped field for innovative business models. When it comes to review, don’t Only employees need to be involved and aware, but first we executives. In addition, specific sustainability performance indicators showing the impact on profits and losses are required. Without them, there can be no transformation,” sums up Sopra Steria board member Frédéric. Scrunch.

This is also confirmed by Dr. André Gützloe in his article ‘Sustainability management in local government’ in ‘innovative management’. In order to promote sustainable transformation in municipalities, they should establish sustainability management in town halls. “The trinity of municipal administrations, municipal enterprises and commercial enterprises is of particular importance,” he writes on page 14.

management as a standard

In addition, management can act as a role model with their actions. To do this, it must be possible “to make the approach to sustainability the basis of daily activities and to communicate and implement it both internally (town hall) and externally (urban society). In order to create municipal sustainability management, the author advises on pages 15 and 16 to do this

  • to take stock of the current orientation of the municipality in the sustainability dimensions of governance, ecology, social affairs and economy,
  • creation of appropriate administrative and project structures;
  • Define authority and responsibility
  • and develop a mission statement that creates understanding and direction in the organization.

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