Department for Sustainability Management
In our research – just like in our teaching – we focus on the topic of sustainability management. In our understanding of sustainability management, we thereby follow the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
, a “plan of action for people, planet and prosperity” by the United Nations that comprises 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We aim at providing students, companies, civil society and public sector with knowledge and motivation to become actors for meaningful and sustainable change.
Guided by this Vision 2030, we see that our primary mission as a department for business administration is to help develop solutions for SDG 12, Sustainable Consumption and Production. As a topic that addresses the whole society, research on sustainability and on sustainable consumption and production cannot be limited to individual actors. Consequently, at the organizational level, we address sustainability management of actors in the three sectors market (e.g. forprofit firms), civil society (e.g. nonprofit organizations), and the public sector (e.g. public administration). Because of the topic’s complexity, we usually do not only focus on the actors themselves, but also on interorganizational and intersectoral Networks (SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals) and their socio-cultural, ecological, and political-economic environment. In this entire system, a key function is acquired by individuals with their abilities, skills, and characteristics, who influence not only organizations and networks significantly, but them also the socio-cultural, ecological, and political-economic environment.
Against the backdrop of this multilevel framework, our research strategy curently focuses on the following areas of research:
- the role of universities in sustainability networks
- success factors of sustainability networks
- pro-environmental behavior at the workplace
- sustainability and digital transformation
- innovations for circular economy
- implementing the sustainable development goals in organizational accountability
Being part of a university of technology, we offer courses not only for business administration students, but also for students majoring or minoring in technical studies, e.g. industrial engineering, business informatics, and environmental engineering. In our courses, we use various innovative teaching concepts such as interactive lectures, seminars, or service learning to convey the contents described above to the students. In the master’s program, the department offers two majors, i.e. Intersectoral Sustainability Management and Management for the Global Goals.
The Department for Sustainability Management is chaired by Prof. Dr. Katharina Spraul. After having studied, obtained a PhD and a habilitation from the University of Mannheim (Department for Public & Nonprofit Management), she got called to her current position in Kaiserslautern in summer 2013. The research and teaching team currently consists of two doctoral students and two teaching and research assistants. Since 2016, the university has established a sustainability office which is also under Prof. Spraul’s supervision with a coordinating person (25%) and four student assistants. The sustainability office is member of the Green Office Network. Since 2018, the university has become signatory member of the PRME.
Funding for the center’s research and teaching comes mainly through the Technische Universität Kaiserslautern. However, collaborations with institutions and organizations from all sectors are sought.