What are the main tools and methods used in sustainable development management?

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Are you interested in sustainable development management and are you thinking of training and specializing in it? Concerned about the environment and the future of humanity, you are wondering what are the main tools and methods used in sustainable development management? We answer you in this article.

In summary:

The main tools and methods used in the management of sustainable development:

  • Serves both as a measure of its effectiveness and as a means of enforcement.
  • Exist in virtually all companies, regardless of their activities.
  • Are taught in international business schools.
  • This includes laws, rules, standards, trades and various procedures.

What are the sustainability indicators and how are they used in sustainability management?

To know if sustainability management is effective and is applied in a defined area, you can refer to some indicators.

First, GDP is still an excellent indicator for the development of a country. It remains valid for evaluating the application of sustainable development management at its level. It should then be more or less constant and slightly increasing.

Then you have the ecological footprints that define whether the preservation of natural resources is effective. There are also greenhouse gas emissions. They must be considerably reduced thanks to green and blue energy. Many countries and companies are now even investing in carbon credits.

Finally, you can rely on the HDI (Human Development Index) which gives relevant information about the population of a country. A good management of sustainable development effectively induces to reduce poverty and the gap between social classes.

What are the three pillars of sustainable development?

Sustainable development is based on three pillars: environmental, social and economic.

The environment

The principles of sustainable development aim above all to protect and even restore the environment. Faced with the urgency of these actions, good management of sustainable development is essential in all countries, starting with companies.

In order to do so, many rules and laws have been put in place to regulate the actions. They are most often applicable within companies and/or within the framework of specific projects or missions.

The social

Sustainable development also takes into consideration the social aspect. One of its most important principles is to ensure the well-being of the people in order to establish peace and harmony within and between the different countries.

Considering the social aspect of sustainable development implies, among other things, respecting gender equality and equal opportunities. In many companies, this is already reflected in a fairer and more integrated recruitment of women, juniors and disabled people.

The economy

Finally, the economy is also taken into account in sustainable development. Even if its principles often go against those of classical management, sustainable development generates slow economic growth, certainly, but in the long term.

What are environmental management systems and how are they used in sustainability management?

Nowadays, more and more environmental management systems are being put in place, and they are valid at the international level. Their main objective is to ensure that the environment is respected as much as possible and thus better protected and preserved.

Among others, these are:

  • ISO standards which are used to determine whether the materials, installations or simply the actions of the company are regulatory;
  • the various procedures written and put in place to dictate how the company acts and proceeds in relation to its activities;
  • Audits to verify the compliance of the company’s activities with the environmental regulations in force;
  • the different certifications to certify that such equipment is usable or that an activity is carried out in accordance with the standards.

How to train and specialize in sustainable development management?

If your goal is to specialize in sustainable development management, the ideal solution is to first train in international management. You can join an international business school like IUM. Go to the school’s website to find a list of available programs. You can find the MSc in International Management, an excellent option. After that, you can choose to specialize in sustainable development management by doing internships or why not a work-study program. For more information on your options, you can always visit the FAQ section.

Updated 14 September 2023