Institutionalizing environmental reform with sense-making: West and Central Africa ports and the ‘green port’ phenomenon

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4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Harmonizing economic activities with environmental considerations has emerged as a new globalizing phenomenon for ports. The phenomenon is labelled as ‘green port’. There is however no canonical way of turning green port into business reality. Some advanced ports have adapted it and African ports are also beginning to follow. The Freeport of Monrovia in West and Central Africa had its process of incorporating environmental considerations into its operational practices in an environmental reform labelled as ‘going green’, akin to the green port phenomenon. The process interrupted routinized port activities and behavior. Employees of Freeport of Monrovia and stakeholders could not foresee the meaning and consequences of such reform. The uncertainty triggered a process for employees and stakeholders to collectively make sense of and react to their new situation. This paper integrates Weick's sense-making properties with Weber and Glynn's institutional mechanisms affiliated to sense-making as a conceptual tool to analyze and understand the process by which meaning was assigned to Freeport of Monrovia's environmental reform and also how it became institutionalized. The analysis is based on hands-on empirical research on an environmental capacity strengthening project executed in 2013 in the Freeport of Monrovia as part of its institutional reform from a service port into landlord port. Findings bring to light the dynamic interplay of institutions and sense-making in the greening of Freeport of Monrovia.
LanguageEnglish
Pages111-120
JournalMarine Policy
Volume86
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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Central Africa
West Africa
Western Africa
stakeholders
human resources
reform
uncertainty
stakeholder
employee
economics
landlord
empirical research
Sensemaking
institutional reform
economic activity

Cite this

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title = "Institutionalizing environmental reform with sense-making: West and Central Africa ports and the ‘green port’ phenomenon",
abstract = "Harmonizing economic activities with environmental considerations has emerged as a new globalizing phenomenon for ports. The phenomenon is labelled as ‘green port’. There is however no canonical way of turning green port into business reality. Some advanced ports have adapted it and African ports are also beginning to follow. The Freeport of Monrovia in West and Central Africa had its process of incorporating environmental considerations into its operational practices in an environmental reform labelled as ‘going green’, akin to the green port phenomenon. The process interrupted routinized port activities and behavior. Employees of Freeport of Monrovia and stakeholders could not foresee the meaning and consequences of such reform. The uncertainty triggered a process for employees and stakeholders to collectively make sense of and react to their new situation. This paper integrates Weick's sense-making properties with Weber and Glynn's institutional mechanisms affiliated to sense-making as a conceptual tool to analyze and understand the process by which meaning was assigned to Freeport of Monrovia's environmental reform and also how it became institutionalized. The analysis is based on hands-on empirical research on an environmental capacity strengthening project executed in 2013 in the Freeport of Monrovia as part of its institutional reform from a service port into landlord port. Findings bring to light the dynamic interplay of institutions and sense-making in the greening of Freeport of Monrovia.",
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Institutionalizing environmental reform with sense-making: West and Central Africa ports and the ‘green port’ phenomenon. / Barnes Dabban, H.; van Tatenhove, J.P.M.; van Koppen, C.S.A.; Termeer, C.J.A.M.

In: Marine Policy, Vol. 86, 2017, p. 111-120.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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