Empowering Organizations to Embrace UN Sustainable Development Goals: Post-Covid-19 Scotland

Ana-Paula Fonseca (Lead / Corresponding author), Kenny Crossan, Miles Weaver, Hock Tan, Andrew Bratton, Elena Pershina

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


he United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) argues that the global coronavirus pandemic has caused unimaginable consequences to the global community’s economy, social structure, and ecosystem. Overcoming this situation is only possible when environmental responses, plans, and policies are prioritized. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has emphasized that the network of public, business, and nongovernment entities should collaborate to create better conditions for economic growth, social cohesion, and employment generation. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a framework for businesses to act responsibly. Although the SDGs are an international agenda, they emphasize that local organizations and national governments should implement them through their business plans and policies. This chapter explores how owner-managers of Scottish small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are implementing the SDGs agenda 2030 by using the UN SDG Action Manager tool. Our approach considers three levels. First, this chapters explores the meaning of the SDGs within the Scottish business context and highlights the role of learning and development in creating more sustainable organizations. Second, the chapter examines the action research approach used to support participants to learn and implement the UN SDG Action Manager tool in their organizations. Finally, based on the participants’ reflection, the chapter discusses the key findings related to (1) the lack of partnership and collaboration, (2) the lack of understanding and the language used in the regulations, and (3) the lack of communication and incentives. Analyzing the 15 Scottish SMEs through this research provides a greater understanding of the business reality of planning, implementing, and learning about the 17 SDGs.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSDGs in the European Region
EditorsWalter Leal Filho, Maria Alzira Pimenta Dinis, Sara Moggi, Elizabeth Price, Alex Hope
Number of pages23
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Publication series

NameImplementing the UN Sustainable Development Goals - Regional Perspectives
ISSN (Print)2731-5576
ISSN (Electronic)2731-5584


  • Sustainable development goals
  • Sustainability
  • Small- and medium-sized enterprises
  • Organizational learning
  • Action research
  • Action learning
  • SDG Action manager


Dive into the research topics of 'Empowering Organizations to Embrace UN Sustainable Development Goals: Post-Covid-19 Scotland'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this