All systems go!?

Sustainability in the digital age

June 17-19, 2020

Católica Lisbon, Portugal


We look forward to welcoming you to Lisbon in 2020!

Call for Papers



CATÓLICA-LISBON is among the most prominent Business & Economics Schools in Europe, ranked 26th in the Financial Times Top European Business Schools ranking. We have achieved this position by combining world-class students and faculty, strong and diverse academic programs, innovative learning initiatives, unique partnerships with the most prestigious international schools, and a close relationship with the business world.



Smart City Innovation Lab

René Bohnsack and the interdisciplinary research team of the Smart City Innovation Lab unite the fields of business model innovation, digital transformation, and international strategy in order drive the transition to sustainable cities through smart business models. Founded in 2016 we work together with more than 40 international partners. SCIL is the creator of the, an online platform to build business models.

Sustainability in the Digital Age

For the GRONEN Conference 2020, we welcome submissions in ALL AREAS OF SUSTAINABILITY RESEARCH.  


For the GRONEN Conference 2020, we invite submissions in all areas of sustainability research. In line with this year’s conference theme, we particularly encourage submissions on the possibilities and perils of the digital economy for sustainability. Those may address, but are not limited to:


(1) Circular, shared, smart. The organization of urban and industrial transformation.

Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things will play a critical role in transforming sectors such as agriculture, healthcare, or mobility to greater sustainability. Smart cities and the circular, shared economy can change consumption and lifestyle patterns, but they also require cross-sector collaborations and shared infrastructures. Research questions in this focal area may cover:

  • What is the effect of connected technologies on the way we live, work, and consume? How do organizations use digital technologies to green urban spaces and meet increasing food, materials and energy needs?
  • How to organize data ownership and cybersecurity in smart cities and regions? What are new responsibilities for organizations and citizens in a digital economy?
  • Which tensions arise in designing and operating shared technology infrastructures? How to combine public, private, and hybrid value capturing logics?


(2) Modularized, customized, always-on. The sustainability of new work.

Digital technologies profoundly change the way we collaborate in ecosystems and platforms, reorganize decision-making and power, and govern inter-organizational partnerships. Citizen engagement platforms, micro-jobbing sites, or watchdog-portals are just a few examples that reflect changes in the way the contemporary organization interacts with its stakeholders. Research questions in this area may cover:

  • What is the effect of new work formats on supply chains and product lifecycles? Do digital technologies improve or reinforce issues such as precarious work and the marginalization of the poor?
  • How do organizations tackle critical issues such as data security and inclusiveness related to their social responsibility? Which role do online tools and social media play for the organization of social activism?
  • How can digital technologies support both inter- and intra-organizational collaboration for sustainability? Which role do digital technologies play, for instance, in facilitating the dialogue on CSR between multiple stakeholders?


(3) Performance, impact, scalability. The diffusion of sustainable innovation.

Digital technologies arguably create exciting opportunities for organizations to come up with new business models and solutions to societal problems that can scale beyond local contexts. Yet, many promising initiatives currently remain confined to pilot projects and experimental settings such as urban or living labs. Submissions in this area may cover:

  • What is the effect of technologies such as augmented reality, blockchain, drones and 3D printing on transforming current patterns of production and consumption? How to model, simulate, and validate the impact of innovation on sustainability?
  • How do sustainable technologies, product-service-systems and business models diffuse to the mass market? How do actors such as entrepreneurs and incumbents interact during the formation of new markets?
  • How can digital technologies help organizations to interact with users? How can they support the creation of a market need for sustainable products and solutions?


Session Format

GRONEN 2020 will combine a range of session formats to foster academic exchange.

The conference will start with a panel debate on the conference theme. In line with the efforts of the GRONEN network to foster the dialogue between scholars and practitioners, both esteemed representatives from universities and industry will take part. The following program consists of both plenary and parallel paper sessions. Sessions are grouped topically and chaired by thought leaders in the field who serve as scientific committee (see GRONEN web page).  In addition, GRONEN 2020 will include a number of professional development workshops (PDWs) led by prominent scholars in the field.

Please return to this website and follow us on Twitter (@GRONENetwork) for regular program updates.



GRONEN welcomes both full papers and research in development.

All submissions will undergo a double-blind review process prior to acceptance. Full papers will be assessed with regard to their rigor and quality. Shorter papers will be selected based on their potential contribution and novelty. The scientific committee will review all accepted submissions and award prizes for the Best Conference Paper and the Best PhD Paper.

  • In general, submissions should not exceed 40 pages, 10 point font or larger. This includes all text, charts, graphs, diagrams, and references. 
  • To ensure a blind review, author names should NOT be identified in the title page, header/footer or body of the paper.
  • Submissions are to be in electronic (single pdf file).

To submit to GRONEN 2020, please click here.


Doctoral Consortium

A doctoral consortium limited to 15 – 20 PhD students will take place right before the main conference, June 16th (full-day).

The doctoral consortium offers a platform for PhD-students to discuss their projects and concerns openly with senior researchers in the field. To ensure high-level discussions, PhDs will be pre-assigned to discussants who will take the time to review and comment on their work. In addition, the doctoral consortium will include plenary sessions on publication and career advice as well as a social get-together to facilitate networking already before the official conference start.

PhD students must apply separately for the consortium, which enables them to also participate in the main conference. Applications should be sent to and include (i) a full paper or research proposal, (ii) a current CV. The doctoral consortium is open to PhD students at any stage. Yet, in order to enable high-level discussions, preference will be given to full paper submissions.


Special issue in Business Strategy and the Environment

A special issue of ‘Business Strategy and the Environment’ will be associated with GRONEN 2020. Scholars who submit their work to the conference are also invited to submit their work to this special issue. Furthermore, authors will benefit from the opportunity to exchange with the special issue editors and numerous members of the scientific committee of GRONEN 2020 who are editorial board members of leading sustainability journals. Participation in the GRONEN conference however is not necessary for submission to the special issue. 

Please find the Call for Papers under the following link:



The deadline for all submissions to GRONEN 2020 is January 20, 2020.

The selection process, notification of authors, and registration of participants follows the schedule below:

January 1, 2020       Registration opens

January 20, 2020     Deadline for submissions

March 15, 2020       Notification of acceptance

May 1, 2020             Deadline for registration

June 16, 2020          Doctoral Consortium & Get together early arrivals

June 17-19, 2020    GRONEN 2020 Research Conference


To register for GRONEN 2020, please click here.

By the way…did you consider combining GRONEN and ARCS in 2020?


The 12th Annual ARCS Research Conference will be hosted by Bocconi University, in Milan, Italy. The conference will be held on June 10-12, 2020. The Conference Chair is Anne Jacqueminet, Assistant Professor for the Department of Management and Technology at Bocconi University. To view the call for papers, please visit the conference webpage. Be sure to check back as the conference approaches for important updates.




Q: Do submissions to GRONEN 2020 have to relate to the annual conference theme ‘Sustainability in the Digital Age’?

A: No. GRONEN welcomes submissions in ALL AREAS of sustainability research.


Q: Does GRONEN provide a template and formatting guidelines for submissions?

A: No, there is no template. We expect authors to stick to generally accepted font types and reference styles in academia. Submissions should not exceed 40 pages in length including diagrams, tables, and references. Submissions are to be in electronic format (doc or pdf files) and must NOT include author names.


Q: What is the registration fee for GRONEN 2020?

A: As in previous years, the registration fee for GRONEN 2020 will be about 400 EUR. PhD Students will pay a reduced fee of 200 EUR. This includes catering during the day, social activities, and the conference dinner.


For any further questions, please contact:

…and make sure to follow us on Twitter: @GRONENetwork


We look forward to welcoming you to Lisbon in 2020!


The organizing committee:

René Bohnsack                              

Christina Bidmon                         

Alina Margolina                             

Cláudia Antunes Marante