The Instrumental Character of the Concept of Sustainability Focusing to the Institutionalist Theory

Main Article Content

Vanessa Piffer
Flávio de São PEDRO FILHO
Leonardo Severo da Luz Neto
Luiz Carlos Cavalcanti de Albuquerque


In organizations, we seek to adapt to the good practices of a relationship with nature, transforming technologies, processes and structural and productive redesign. Reflections such as these motivate research supported by the Institutionalist Theory and the assumptions of sustainability. The general objective here is to carry out a theoretical-conceptual study on the instrumental character of the concept of sustainability in focusing to the of institutionalist theory; and to the results, the specific objectives of contextualizing the concept of sustainability (1), addressing the main concepts raised in the face of institutionalist theory (2), and analyzing the approach of the conceptual perspectives considered in this research (3). The question to be answered in this study is: what is the instrumental character of the concept of sustainability in the face of institutionalist theory? The Content Analysis Method and data analysis techniques are applied in qualitative research, such as cleavage and categorization. As a result, it brings a virtuous circle of conceptual relation in evidence; points out inequality of behavior in organizations, making it difficult to achieve sustainability; Criticism points to the lack of employee awareness of the rules. We also look at organizational levels that reflect on sustainability. Conceptual applicability converts the commitment to protect and conserve natural resources, while at the same time channeling real benefits to all who are around the institution that promotes the activities. These concepts will result in a balance between the constraints that lead to scarcity and progress on the sustainability tripod; are isomorphic measures that are somehow beneficial in the relationship between the environment and the social and economic.


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

How to Cite
Piffer, V., PEDRO FILHO, F. de S., Luz Neto, L. S. da, & Albuquerque, L. C. C. de. (2019). The Instrumental Character of the Concept of Sustainability Focusing to the Institutionalist Theory. International Journal for Innovation Education and Research, 7(2), 104-123.
Author Biographies

Vanessa Piffer

Research Coordinator

Flávio de São PEDRO FILHO

Research Advisor

Leonardo Severo da Luz Neto, MIRIAM LUZ SOBREIRA

Corresponding Author

Research Collaborator


Luiz Carlos Cavalcanti de Albuquerque

Research Collaborator


[1] BOFF, Leonardo. (2017). Sustainability: what it is: what it is not. Digital Edition. Petrópolis, RJ: Times. Available at: Accessed on 08/21/2018.
[2] BUAINAIN, A. M. (2014). Some conditioning factors of the new pattern of accumulation of Brazilian agriculture. In: BUAINAIN, A. M. et al. (Org.). The rural world in Brazil of the 21st century: the formation of a new agrarian and agricultural pattern. Brasília, DF: Embrapa Informação Tecnológica, v. 1.
[3] CASAGRANDE, Rodrigo Moreira; LAVANDA Eduardo Eduardo Facin. (2015). Theoretical convergences between corporate governance and sustainability from the perspective of legitimacy. Journal of Social and Environmental Management - RGSA, São Paulo, v. 9, n. 2, mai./ago.
[4] CASSAR, Maurício; DIAS, Reinaldo; ZAVAGLIA, Tércia. (2013). Introduction to management: from competitiveness to sustainability. 3. ed. Campinas: Alinea.
[5] CAVALCANTE, Ricardo Bezerra; CALIXTO, Pedro; PINHEIRO, Marta Macedo Kerr. (2014). Content analysis: general considerations, relations with the research question, possibilities and limitations of the method. Journal Information and Society, João Pessoa, v.24, n.1, jan./abr.
[6] CHIAVENATO, Idalberto. (2014). Administration, theory, process and practice. Barueri (SP): Manole.
[7] DIAS, Reinaldo. (2015). Sustainability: Origin and fundamentals. Education and Global Governance. Development Model. São Paulo: Atlas.
[8] FARIA, Emilia de Oliveira; MARQUES, Gilmar dos Santos. (2017). New Institutional Economy and Management for Sustainability. XIX International Meeting on Business Management and Environment (ENGEMA). São Paulo (SP), Brazil, 4 to 5 December.
[9] FAUSTINO, Manuel; AMADOR, Filomena. (2016). The concept of "sustainability": Migration and changes of meanings in education. Revista Indagatio Didactica, Aveiro, vol. 8, n.1, july.
[10] JACOMETTI, Márcio; CASTRO, Marcos de; GONÇALVES, Sandro Aparecido; COSTA, Mayla Cristina. (2016). Analysis of the effectiveness of public policies of Local Productive Arrangement for local development based on institutional theory. Public Administration Journal, Rio de Janeiro, v. 50, n. 3, mai./jun.
[11] MACHADO, Andréia de Bem; FIALHO, Francisco Antônio. (2018). Mapping the concepts of spiritual knowledge and integral knowledge. Journal of the University of Vale do Rio Verde, v. 16, n. 1, jan./jul.
[12] MAPURUNG, Patrícia Vasconcelos Rocha; LIMA, Bruno Chaves Correia; HOLANDA, Allan Pinheiro. (2015). Social disclosure and isomorphism in companies listed in the business sustainability index. Journal of Management UFSM, Santa Maria, v. 8, n. 2, Apr. - Jun.
[13] MUNCK, Luciano; BANSI, Ana Claudia; GALLELI, Barbara. (2016). Sustainability in organizational context: A comparative analysis of models that propose trajectories for its management. Journal of Management Science, v. 18, n. 44, April.
[14] OLIVEIRA, Denize Cristina de. (2008). Thematic-categorial content analysis: A systematization proposal. Journal of Nursing UERJ, Rio de Janeiro, v. 16, n. 4, out / dez.
[15] PIAIA, Thami Covatti. (2013). Institutions, organizations and institutional changes: analyzes and perspectives. Journal of Law, Rio Grande do Sul, v. 27, n. 2.
[16] PEREIRA, Fernando Antônio de Mel. (2012). The evolution of institutional theory in organizational studies: a field of research to be explored. Revista Organizações em Contexto, São Bernardo do Campo, Year 8, n.16, jun./dez.
[17] PHILIPPI Jr., Arlindo; SAMPAIO, Carlos Alberto Cione; FERNANDES, Valdir. (2007). Business management and sustainability. Barueri, SP: Manole. (Environmental collection; v.21).
[18] QUINELLO, Robson; NASCIMENTO, Paulo Tromboni de Souza. (2009). The innovation process under the institutionalist approach: An ethnographic study in the management of facilities of an assembler in the state of São Paulo. Journal of Management and Innovation- RAI, São Paulo, v. 6, n. 1.
[19] REZENDE, Lucas Pereira. (2013). Reflections on a common research agenda to the Theory of Rational Choice and to the political culture. Journal of Political Culture, Rio Grande do Sul, v. 3, n. 1.
[20] SILVA FILHO, Admilson Soares da, et al. (2016). Moorish batteries as a sustainability model. In this paper, s / n, n. 1, p. 14.
[21] SILVA, Jeoval Batista da. (2015). Sustainability Assessment in Conservation Units in Western Amazonia focusing on U Theory Dissertation (Postgraduate Program Master in Administration of the Center of Applied Social Sciences of the Foundation). Federal University of Rondônia, Porto Velho.
[22] VICENTE, Simone Cesar da Silva; PORTUGAL, Manoel. (2014). Coercive Isomorphism: The Implications of Institutional Pressures in the Procurement Process of Brazilian Companies. Annals of the III International Symposium on Project Management (III SINGEP) and II Symposium on Innovation and Sustainability (II S2IS), São Paulo (SP), November 9-11