Sustainability Transitions

Professor: Frans Melissen, PhD
Research topic: Speeding up a societal sustainability transition through stimulating the emergence of a socioeconomic system that operates within planetary boundaries, promotes well-being and safeguards social justice


This transversal professorship endeavours to support current and future professionals, companies and organisations in identifying, crafting and implementing their own sustainability transition pathways.

Almost all professionals, companies and organisations realise and endorse that we need to move away from a society that has organised itself based on a socioeconomic system that exhausts our planet, focuses exclusively on economic growth and results in ever-growing inequality. Almost all of us support the idea of moving towards a system that operates within planetary boundaries, promotes well-being and does so based on the principle of social justice. 

Simultaneously, many professionals, companies and organisations, including those in the domains served by Breda University of Applied Sciences, struggle to find the best way to make a significant and meaningful contribution to this much-needed societal transition. Quite understandably, because sustainability transitions are complex, sometimes messy, and oftentimes confusing, especially because there is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to your own contribution. 

The transversal professorship Sustainability Transitions therefore aims to empower and support individual professionals, companies and organisations in accounting for their personal and organisational circumstances, but also their preferences and worldviews, as well as those of their stakeholders, in shaping their own sustainability transition pathways. 

We do so by developing and sharing relevant insights, for instance related to sustainable organisation models, ownership structures, cooperation mechanisms, behavioural interventions, and more. However, we also purposely do so by exploring new ones, experimenting, sometimes failing, but always trying again.

If you would like to join forces with us in finding ways to make a significant and meaningful contribution to shaping a better world, please contact us.

The research team:

  • Frans Melissen
  • Michiel Buis
  • Rob van der Rijt
  • Celiane Camargo-Borges
  • Andrew Mzembe
  • Harald Buijtendijk