Organisational Change for Sustainability Workshop



* All presentations at the workshop are now available to download below


Rachel Freeman (Sustain and Bristol University) – Organisational Change for Sustainability Workshop Introduction

Ian Brooks (IBM) – Sustainable Organisation Culture: creating a balanced change programme

Carl Holland (De Montfort University) – Environmental Psychology and Social Networks

Derek Foster (Lincoln University) – Social Computing & Electro-Magnates

Phil Hampshire (Buro Happold & Bristol University) – Value, Values & Sustainability

Rob Bristow (JISC) – JISC’s Greening ICT Programme

Ron Storey (PDP Global) – Short Bio and Background


Date: Thursday 8th December

Location: University of Bristol’s Systems Centre (

Time: from 10 am to 4pm (tea and coffee from 9:30), lunch will be provided


Rachel Freeman (EngD candidate at the University of Bristol Systems Centre)

View Derek  Foster's profile on LinkedIn

Derek Foster (PhD Researcher in Computer Science and Sustainability)

View Derek  Foster's profile on LinkedIn


Purpose: To bring together interested academics and practitioners of sustainability in the non-residential sectors, to explore the why and how of Organisational Change for Sustainability.

Format: There will be several short scene-setting presentations, followed by discussions in smaller groups on specific areas of interest, and the day will finish with a whole group discussion to identify insights gained, research gaps identified, and potential areas of future work.

Questions to Be Explored

The Why

  • Why should OCfS be done – can’t we just improve buildings and vehicle efficiencies?
  • What is the effectiveness of organisational change? What can it achieve?

The Philosophy

  • How should an organisation decide on a level of sustainability to aim for and does that affect their probability of success? e.g. percentage reduction in water, energy, waste, procurement, travel.
  • How does organisational change for sustainability compare to organisational change for increased productivity or profits? Is there a qualitative difference?

The How

  • What amount of work is needed to effect change and over what timeline is it normally done?
  • What tools are available for diagnosing an organisation? For example, systems dynamics, data gathering through staff surveys and interviews, stakeholder mapping, energy consumption analysis, building energy audits, etc.
  • What tools are available for implementing organisational change? For example, board-level commitments and goal setting, building upgrades, appropriate equipment controls, stakeholder engagement, energy information feedback and its provision via information systems and dashboards, and staff engagement through social computing and behavioural change.

Embedding Change

  • What are the best ways to embed the change in the organisation so that interventions are no longer needed? What lessons can we learn from organisations that have already evolved to become sustainable or low carbon?
  • Do complicated contractual arrangements around buildings, such as PFIs and subcontracting of utilities management, change the effectiveness of interventions?
If you would like to attend the workshop or would like more information then please contact Rachel Freeman at or Derek Foster at

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