Five Practices for Building Local Capacity in Sustainability-Driven Entrepreneurship for Place-Based Transformations

Diele Lobo, Ana Carolina Rodriguez, Silvia Pereira de Castro Casa Nova, Alexandre A. Ardichvili

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


There is a growing interest in how entrepreneurship animates deliberate sustainability transformations across societal levels. Few studies, however, have provided an empirically grounded account of practices employed by sustainability-driven entrepreneurial organizations for sustainability transformations. We address this gap by applying the critical Human Resource Development (CHRD) framework to identify practices for developing organizational and community capacity conducive to sustainability transformations in two cases of sustainability-driven entrepreneurship in the UNESCO World Heritage Site Serra da Capivara National Park, Brazil. We used case study methodology to identify five practices by conducting a reflexive thematic analysis with qualitative data from key informant interviews, documents, and secondary sources. Our results show that each practice was strongly oriented by relational values of care and social–ecological systems thinking. Both humans and nonhumans were taken as stakeholders who participate in and benefit from practices. Caring for the local place, place-based learning, and regenerative organizing appeared to be relevant for learning and development interventions that imparted significant changes in the local social–ecological context. We updated the CHRD framework to incorporate a nonhuman dimension and highlight caring, place-based learning, and regenerative organizing as essential areas of engagement in which HRD practices in support of place-based sustainability transformations occur.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number3027
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This research was funded by the Brazilian National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq, Portuguese: Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico), grant number 409225/20169.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • Biodiversity conservation
  • Care
  • Conservation entrepreneurship
  • Cultural heritage
  • HRD practice
  • Regenerative sustainability
  • Social entrepreneurship


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