Sustainability has been a subject of thought, debate, reflection and research for a long time now. Managing the triple bottom-line, i.e. profits, people and planet has become paramount in the wake of depleting resources and environmental concerns all over the world. While concern has been expressed towards the sustainability of scarce natural and environmental resources, there has been very little attempt to explore the social aspect of sustainability of critical human resources. Firstly, this refers to the problem of scarcity of duly qualified and motivated human resources to meet the future demands for these resources. Secondly, it refers to unintended outcomes of business practices for human resources, human resource management and the society at large. For example, critical human resources are being consumed and exploited, as reflected by increased work-related stress, blurring of work-family life, health problems, burnout, or lack of employability.
This is a far cry from the rhetoric of ‘human resource development’. It also assumes added significance given the well-established view that human resources are the most important source of competitive advantage for organisations. The failure to ensure sustainability of critical human resources would lead to loss of strategic ability, differentiation and innovation. Thereby, it is of paramount importance that we explore the issue of sustainability of human resources so as to be better prepared to deal with the challenges of tomorrow.
This special issue seeks to compile papers that can contribute to the development of an exciting new research agenda geared towards the understanding and analysis of the sustainability issue from the perspective of the critical human resources in organisations.
We welcome research papers that offer valuable new insights or present new approaches to any of the topics listed below. Work offering a conceptual framework, empirical insights, case studies, use of different methodological approaches and offering an international dimension are particularly encouraged.
Suitable topics include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Sustainable HRM and its link to business strategy
- Developing human resources from a sustainability perspective
- Leadership for sustainable development of human resources
- Sustainable HRM during times of organisational change
- The role of sustainable HRM across the value chain.
- Business ethics as a driver of human resource sustainability
- Cross-cultural issues in sustainability of human resources
- Role of human resource practitioners in ensuring sustainability of human resources
- Balancing competing demands of sustainability of human resources with economic competitiveness of firms.
- Role of organisational culture in ensuring human resource sustainability
Deadline for manuscript submission: 31 May, 2015
Completion of first review process: 31 August, 2015
Deadline for submission of revised manuscripts: 30 November, 2015
Completion of second review process: 31 January, 2016
Final decision: 29 February, 2016