Article

(Inconvenient) Truth or Fairy-tale

Abstract

This mixed methods research aims to understand how staff and students ofthe Faculty of Social Sciences of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VUA)experience the sustainability initiatives of the university. Sustainability in organizations isgaining importance now that organizations feel socially responsible for theirecological impact and are held accountable for this impact. VUA claims to havedeveloped policies and practices in order to try to become a more sustainableorganization. This research aims to find out what the frontstage of theseinitiatives entails and how they are experienced in backstage in the day to daypractices of staff and students. Leading to the following research question: How are Vrije UniversiteitAmsterdam's sustainability initiatives experienced by staff and students of theFaculty of Social Sciences?. Methods that have been used to gainan understanding of the frontstage and backstage of the sustainabilityinitiatives of VUA are quantitative ethnographic methods (fieldwork, interviewing,participant observation, observation and document analysis) and a qualitativesurvey. The data gathered offers insight into the sustainability initiatives ofVUA as they are presented on paper and experienced in practice, concluding thatthe staff and students of the Faculty of Social Science experience adiscrepancy between the frontstage and the backstage of the sustainabilityaccounting efforts of VUA. 

Keywords

ethnograpy, sustainability, VU Amsterdam, Mixed-Methods, Faculty of Social Sciences, organizational sciences

How to Cite

Hoekman, S. (2022). “(Inconvenient) Truth or Fairy-tale”, Science for Sustainability (S4S) Journal 6(1). doi: https://doi.org/10.53466/CCGL5326.S4SHOE1
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Authors

Sabien Hoekman (VU Amsterdam)

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0

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This article has been peer reviewed.

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