Dr Helen Borland


Work & Organisational Psychology Group

Dr Helen Borland
Position: Senior Lecturer in Business Sustainability
Phone: +44(0)121 204 3266 Email: h.m.borland@aston.ac.uk Room: SW722

Popular Press

  • Borland, H. (29th March 2012) The Alternative Budget Birmingham Post. 
  •  Ph D, Cranfield University, 1992. Subject: Marketing
  •  BSc, University of Plymouth, 1986. Subject: Environmental Sciences


  • Senior Lecturer (Business Sustainability), Aston Business School. (January 2011 - Present)
  • Lecturer (Marketing), Birmingham Business School, University of Birmingham. (2003 - 2011)
  • Lecturer (Marketing), Cranfield University. (1999 - 2003)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Other professional appointments

(As programme director I have a combined 9 years directorship experience at both Birmingham and Cranfield, where I led the programmes through major organisational restructuring, QAA, ESRC and EQUIS exercises. I have also been responsible for major growth and expansion of the programmes.)

Previous Professional Experience

Prior to my academic career, I worked in both the fresh foods and hi-tech retail and distribution sectors in both the UK and the Far East, where I held international marketing management posts involving significant amounts of travel and large budgetary/income responsibilities.

I also have a wide range of consultancy, facilitation and corporate research experience for clients such as Unigate plc., Unipart plc., Barclays Bank, IBM-UK, Wincanton Distribution Services, Euromonitor plc., the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and the FAO.

 I teach Strategic Business Sustainability on the MBA Business, Ethics, Responsibility and Sustainability module, and on the new MSc in Social Responsibility and Sustainability. I also teach Strategic Business Sustainability on some of the other MSc programmes in the Business School.


My main research interests centre around my research into Strategic Business Sustainability which focuses on how firms can adopt an ecologically sustainable approach to their strategic decision-making, senior management and leadership activities. The approach is interdisciplinary and in particular integrates scientific, psychological, philosophical and strategic aspects of sustainability and works towards positive solutions and visions for a more ecologically sustainable human future.


As part of a region-wide initiative, I won a research grant called ‘Climate Change Leadership’ (£47,000), which is part of a wider project called ‘Skills for Climate Change’ (£1.5 million), in conjunction with the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce, Birmingham City Council and part sponsored by the Environment Agency and European Social Fund (EU). This project is for three years duration (2009 – 2012) and aims to help improve the Midlands region’s corporate response to Climate Change and Sustainability, and particularly to embed it as a top management and leadership issue.

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.
  • Member of the British Academy of Management.
  • Member of the Academy of Management.
  • Member of the International Association of Business in Society.
  • Member of the Aston Business School Social Responsibility and Sustainability Group.
  • Member of the Sustainable Aston Working Group.

Recent Journal Articles

  • Borland, H. and Lindgreen, A. (2013) Sustainability, Epistemology, Ecocentric Business and Marketing Strategy: Ideology, Reality and Vision, Journal of Business Ethics, 117(1), 173-187.
  • Parkes, C. and Borland, H. (2012) Strategic HRM: Transforming its Responsibilities towards Ecological Sustainability (the greatest global challenge facing organizations), Thunderbird International Business Review, 54(6), 811-824.
  • Borland, H. and Paliwoda, S. (2011) Marketing Responsibility in an Era of Economic and Climactic Challenge, Marketing Intelligence and Planning, 29(1), 49-62.
  • Borland, H. M. (2009) Conceptualising Global Strategic Sustainability and Corporate Transformational Change, International Marketing Review, 26(4/5), 554-572. 

 Recent Book Chapters 

  • Parkes, C., Borland, H., Nadisic, T. and Crawshaw, J. (2014) HRM and the Ethical Organisation, Chapter 4, in Crawshaw, J., Davis, A. and Budhwar, P. (eds) Strategic and International Human Resource Management, London: Sage.
  • Borland, H. (2013) Conceptualising Global Strategic Sustainability and Corporate Transformational Change, Chapter 106, p. 300-321 (Vol. 4), in Blewitt, J. D. (ed.) Sustainable Development: Critical Concepts in the Environment, London: Routledge.
  • Borland, H. (2013) Using Science in Business Sustainability Teaching and Research, Chapter 11, in Haynes, K., Murray, A. and Dillard, J. (eds.) Corporate Social Responsibility: A Research Handbook. Abingdon: Routledge.
  • Borland, H. M. (2009) Modelling Strategic Sustainability: Antecedents and Drivers for Corporate Change, in International Marketing and Business in CEE Markets, edited by Professor Maja Szmura-Tyc. 

  Recent Conference Papers

  • Borland, H. and Ambrosini, V. (2013) Building Theory at the Intersection of Ecological Sustainability and Strategic Management, Sustainable Business Conference, University of Edinburgh, UK, April.

  • Borland, H. and Ambrosini, V. (2012) Business Strategies for Ecological Sustainability: Towards a New Conceptualisation, Academy of Management Conference, Boston, USA, August.
  • Borland, H. and Ambrosini, V. (2012) Global Business Strategies for Ecological Sustainability: Developing a New Strategic Typology, Revisiting Internationalisation: Dynamics, Diversity and Sustainability, Centre for International Business, Aalborg University, Denmark, May-June.
  • Borland, H. and Ambrosini, V. (2011) Business Strategies for Ecological Sustainability: A Theoretical Investigation, British Academy of Management Conference, Aston University, UK, September.
  • Borland, H. (2011) Developing Business Strategies for Ecological Sustainability: Scientific, Epistemological, Conceptual and Practical Considerations, International Association of Business in Society Conference, University of Bath, UK, June.
  • Borland, H. (2010) Towards an Integrated Strategic Sustainability Theoretical Model, Academy of Marketing Science Conference, Portland, Oregon, USA, May.
  • Borland, H. M. (2009) Definitions, Theories, Drivers and Managerial Implications: Grounding Global Strategic Sustainability, Academy of Marketing Science Conference, Baltimore, USA, May.
  • Borland, H. M. (2008) Conceptualising Corporate Strategic Sustainability: Routes to Sustainable Transformational Change, European Academy of Business in Society (EABIS) Colloquium, 10 – 12 Cranfield School of Management, UK, September.
  • Borland, H. M. (2008) Modelling Strategic Environmental Sustainability: Antecedents, International Marketing and Business Conference, University of Katowice, Poland, 16 – 18 October.

Administrative Roles and Responsibilities

  • Member, ABS Social Responsibility and Sustainability Group, School.
  • Member, Sustainable Aston Working Group, University.

 Development Activities Attended

  • Workshop, "Distance Learning Teaching Session," Aston University. (June 2011)
  • Workshop, "Authenticity in Executive Development Teaching." (April 2011)

Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research