Sustainable Procurement in the United Nations

Peter Lund-Thomsen, Nives Costa

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    This paper deals with the integration of economic, social and environmental criteria into the purchasing practices of the United Nations (UN) system--also known as the UN engagement in sustainable procurement (SP). We argue that the debates about the pros and cons of the UN engaging in SP are highly contested among UN procurement officers and member states. However, so far the debate has mostly been based on assumptions about how the implementation of SP might affect developing country stakeholders. In fact, very few academic studies have been made of the economic, social and environmental effects of SP on developing-country firms, workers and the environment. We suggest that academics and SP managers could address this knowledge gap by working together on the development of SP impact assessment tools and test these through detailed studies of the actual as opposed to the postulated effects of SP in developing-country contexts.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Corporate Citizenship
    Issue number42
    Pages (from-to)55-72
    Publication statusPublished - 2011


    • Sustainable Procurement
    • Corporate Social Responsibility
    • United Nations
    • Developing Countris
    • Social Justice
    • Procurement Managers
    • Impact Assessment

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