City of Vienna Competence Team

Research Priorities

Development of a conceptual framework model for Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability

The objective of the Competence Team Change for Corporate Sustainability is the development of a conceptual framework model for Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability. The first step will be to develop the model based on theory. The second step is the empirical, evidence-based development of the conceptual model by means of a qualitative study.

Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability

The concept of Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability is based on the theory of Dynamic Capabilities, which are also referred to as strategic change competencies. Dynamic Capabilities are those organizational skills that enable a company to adapt its resources and competencies to changing environmental conditions.

Among others, these competencies support companies in perceiving the need for change, generating connectable innovations and implementing them in coordination with the corporate strategy.

Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability represent a special type of Dynamic Capabilities, applied in the context of sustainability-related change processes. They enable companies to continuously generate and implement economically, ecologically and socially sustainable product, process or business model innovations.

Decentralized sustainability-oriented innovation teams or the establishment of innovation labs with an ecological and social focus enable the promotion of this specific type of change skills. In addition, processes that promote exchange with external stakeholders to identify business opportunities and threats as well as to generate new products and services in the company form another possible basis for this type of strategic change competencies.


The following questions are addressed in the course of the research work by the City of Vienna Competence Team:

  • Which factors at the individual, organizational and institutional level favor the emergence of Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability?
  • Which individual and organizational competencies are made up of Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability?
  • Which effects do Dynamic Capabilities for Sustainability have on the entrepreneurial resource base and on cognitive or emotional structures?