Browsing by Author "Rautenbach, Megan"
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- ItemA systems engineering approach to business sustainability: a business sustainability framework and evaluation tool(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2019-04) Rautenbach, Megan; De Kock, Imke; Brent, Alan C.; Bam, Louzanne; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Engineering. Dept. of Industrial Engineering.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Sustainability is recognised as one of the primary challenges of modern businesses. The importance for, and pressure on businesses to incorporate aspects of sustainability into all business processes, that result in delivery of products and/or services, in terms of social equity, economic efficiency, and environmental performance, have increased over the last decades. Consequently, a number of business sustainability frameworks and approaches were developed to support businesses in incorporating these three elements of sustainability into business processes. However, these frameworks present challenges on how elements of sustainability could be incorporated into business processes. These challenges are: (i) the notion that these frameworks consider the business as a whole, and not as a number of sub-components; (ii) all dimensions of sustainability are not uniformly considered; (iii) measuring the three dimensions of sustainability is not similar across the business components; and (iv) businesses adapt their business processes to a recommended framework that considers sustainability at an aggregated level. The aim of this research is to contribute towards the body of knowledge of business sustainability through the development of a business sustainability framework that effectively facilitates a sustainable business vision through shared value. Such a business sustainability framework should address the challenges presented by existing business sustainability frameworks and approaches. The following objectives that, when addressed collectively, support the attainment of the above-stated aim are: Initially, a systematic review of literature pertaining to existing measures of sustainability, and sustainable business frameworks that are aimed to improve business sustainability through shared value are discussed. Using the systems engineering approach to address the challenges of sustainable business development, it allows for unpacking the business environment into business components and measure sustainability performances at these business components which ultimately aim to achieve their full potential in terms of sustainability. The overarching methodology which is guided by Jabareen's conceptual framework methodology proposes a qualitative systems engineering approach to business sustainability. Conceptual frameworks are products of qualitative processes, or set of concepts, that describe an event, object or process. Therefore, the conceptual framework approach enables the use of existing literature where the literature has certain relationships, features and concepts with one another and therefore the discussion of interrelations within concepts creates the applicability of Jabareen's approach. The Business Sustainability Framework is developed using the partnership of the systems engineering approach and the conceptual framework methodology. This high-level conceptualisation of the Business Sustainability Framework illustrates the four quadrants, that are subsequently translated into three stages within the developed Business Sustainability Evaluation Tool. The Business Sustainability Evaluation Tool aims to contribute to business sustainability to serve as a mechanism to measure business sustainability within a business environment. In conclusion, a case study application will be conducted to gain more in-depth and practical insight of how an international private hospital group considers business sustainability. Additionally, this research makes a contribution to the business sustainability field of research by providing a di erent view towards the contribution of business sustainability within businesses.