A Conceptual Architecture for Stewarding Sustainability Transformations



This Chapter takes the emerging conceptual architecture for stewarding sustainability transformations to the next level. It suggests that collaboration literacy enhances transformation literacy, which is defined as the capability to steward sustainability transformations collectively, across the boundaries of institutions, nations, sectors, and cultures. The chapter proposes four shifts in thinking toward a new way of approaching large-system change that consider the Patterns of Aliveness Theory with its six aliveness-enhancing principles. It summarizes the insights from 50 semi-structured research interviews with scholars and practitioners in the global sustainability arena and links these insights to the currently most discussed intervention approaches to sustainability transformations. The integration with the aliveness principles and the dimensions of the Collective Leadership Compass leads to the final level of the conceptual architecture for stewarding sustainability transformations. How this can be applied to enhance systems aliveness is illustrated by an example from the circular economy approach.


Transformation literacy Collaboration literacy Stewardship of sustainability transformations Circular economy Collective leadership compass Systems aliveness Patterns of aliveness theory Multi-stakeholder collaboration SDG implementation Transformative change Large-system change 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Full Member of the Club of RomeCollective Leadership InstitutePotsdamGermany

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