Professor Diane Holt

EBS - Management and Marketing
Professor Diane Holt
  • Email

  • Telephone

    +44 (0) 1206 873305

  • Location

    EBS.3.33, Colchester Campus

  • Academic support hours

    You can find details of Academic Support hours on the EBS UG and PG information page on Moodle or by calling EBS Student Services on 01206873911



Diane Holt (BSc, MSc, PhD) joined Essex Business School in November 2013. Previously she held posts at Queens University Belfast (2007-2013) and Middlesex University Business School (1996-2007). Previous duties have included designing and delivering a suite of postgraduate Masters programmes in the sustainability area whilst at Queens. She also spent 1.5 years seconded to Middlesex University's Dubai campus responsible for the roll out of the Business Programmes. She has published over 100 peer reviewed journal articles, book chapters and conference papers in the areas such as green supply chain management, sustainability discourse, ecopreneuring, and the role of business in development. She was the principal investigator on the ESRC funded Trickle Out Africa Project which considers the impact of social and environmental enterprises on poverty alleviation and sustainable development across the 19 countries of Southern and Eastern Africa. During 2011 and 2012 she spent 24 weeks on fieldwork in Kenya, Zambia and South Africa as part of this research project. The online Trickle Out Directory now lists over 4000 social purpose ventures. She has also held grants from the British Council, British Academy and the Nuffield Foundation, and has won over 690K of external funding since 2009. She is currently leading the ESRC-NRF South Africa PhD partnering programme SASIE (2015-2018) on social innovation and social entrepreneurship in association with Universities of Wits, Pretoria and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan. Recent awards also include a Newton Advanced Fellowship with Dr Silvia Pinheiro from Brazil on Inclusion and formalization of Amazonian informal entrepreneurs into MNC value chains - mechanisms, partnerships and impacts. Recent Awards 2014: Best full paper award in Sustainable and Responsible Business Track at British Academy of Management Conference, Belfast Sept 2013: Best paper in Social Ethical and Environmental Business Track, ISBE conference, Cardiff November. 2013: Finalist for Outstanding Academic Study in Development category, International Development Awards - All Party Group on International Development (winners announced at Parliament Buildings, Stormont, Northern Ireland on May 23rd 009: Highly Commended (Emerald) Awarded to 4 papers each year within the J. Manufacturing Technology Management Recent External Reviewer/ Examiner Positions: - Member of British Council Social Science Grants Panel (2015- present) - Member of ESRC Peer Review College (from Nov 2012) - Held appointments as an External Examiner on PG or UG programmes at Nottingham University, Royal Holloway, Regents Business School, Salford Business School, and Liverpool John Moores - PhD External examiner (Australia, France, UK) - External expert reviewer panel Foundation for Science and Technology Portugal (2012)/Austrian Science Foundation (2009, 2011)


  • PhD. The development and empirical testing of a pressure/response model of green supply chain management amongst a cross-sectoral sample of members of The Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply. Middlesex University, Business School (awarded April 2005). Supervised by Professor Abby Ghobadian (now University of Reading, Henley Management School)

  • MSc. Environmental Management; BSc. (Hons) Environmental Science University of Stirling,

Research and professional activities

Research interests

Trickle Out

Research Gate

Google Scholar

Conferences and presentations

Diane has presented and contributed to more than 50 conference papers.

Teaching and supervision

Current teaching responsibilities

  • Business and International Development (BE422)

Previous supervision

Thandie Kaime
Thandie Kaime
Degree subject: Management
Degree type: Master of Research
Awarded date: 12/2/2019


Journal articles (26)

Littlewood, D. and Holt, D., (2018). Social enterprise resilience in sub-Saharan Africa. Business Strategy and Development. 1 (1), 53-63

Littlewood, D. and Holt, D., (2018). Social Entrepreneurship in South Africa: Exploring the Influence of Environment. Business and Society. 57 (3), 525-561

Littlewood, D., Decelis, R., Hillenbrand, C. and Holt, D., (2018). Examining the drivers and outcomes of corporate commitment to climate change action in European high emitting industry. Business Strategy and the Environment. 27 (8), 1437-1449

Graham, S., Graham, B. and Holt, D., (2018). The relationship between downstream environmental logistics practices and performance. International Journal of Production Economics. 196, 356-365

Barkemeyer, R., Figge, F., Hoepner, A., Holt, D., Kraak, JM. and Yu, PS., (2017). Media coverage of climate change: An international comparison. Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space. 35 (6), 1029-1054

Holt, D. and Littlewood, D., (2017). Waste Livelihoods Amongst the Poor - Through the Lens of Bricolage. Business Strategy and the Environment. 26 (2), 253-264

Kumar, V., Holt, D., Ghobadian, A. and Garza-Reyes, JA., (2015). Developing green supply chain management taxonomy-based decision support system. International Journal of Production Research. 53 (21), 6372-6389

Rivera-Santos, M., Holt, D., Littlewood, D. and Kolk, A., (2015). Social Entrepreneurship in Sub-Saharan Africa. Academy of Management Perspectives. 29 (1), 72-91

Holt, D. and Littlewood, D., (2015). Identifying, mapping, and monitoring the impact of hybrid firms. California Management Review. 57 (3), 107-125

Hanson, J. and Holt, D., (2014). Sustainable food procurement in British and Irish zoos. British Food Journal. 116 (10), 1636-1651

Hanson, J. and Holt, D., (2014). Sustainable food procurement in British and Irish zoos.. British Food Journal. 116 (10), 1636-1651

Littlewood, D. and Holt, D., (2014). Addressing Rural Social Exclusion in the Developing World: Exploring the Role of African Social Purpose Ventures. Contemporary Issues in Entrepreneurship Research. 4, 105-131

Barkemeyer, R., Holt, D., Preuss, L. and Tsang, S., (2014). What Happened to the ‘Development’ in Sustainable Development? Business Guidelines Two Decades After Brundtland. Sustainable Development. 22 (1), 15-32

Barkemeyer, R., Figge, F. and Holt, D., (2013). Sustainability-Related Media Coverage and Socioeconomic Development: A Regional and North–South Perspective. Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy. 31 (4), 716-740

Barkemeyer, R., Figge, F. and Holt, D., (2013). Exploring sustainability-related media coverage and human development. Environment and Planning C: Government and Policy. 31 (4), 716-740

Holt, D., (2012). The Journey of a ‘Green’ Micro-Enterprise - The Green Planet. Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management. 19 (2), 90-101

Holt, D. and Barkemeyer, R., (2012). Media coverage of sustainable development issues - attention cycles or punctuated equilibrium?. Sustainable Development. 20 (1), 1-17

Holt, D., (2011). Where are they now? tracking the longitudinal evolution of environmental businesses from the 1990s. Business Strategy and the Environment. 20 (4), 238-250

Barkemeyer, R., Holt, D., Figge, F. and Napolitano, G., (2010). A longitudinal and contextual analysis of media representation of business ethics. European Business Review. 22 (4), 377-396

Holt, D. and Ghobadian, A., (2009). An empirical study of green supply chain management practices amongst UK manufacturers. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management. 20 (7), 933-956

Rao, P. and Holt, D., (2005). Do green supply chains lead to competitiveness and economic performance?. International Journal of Operations & Production Management. 25 (9), 898-916

Holt, D., (2004). Managing the interface between suppliers and organizations for environmental responsibility– an exploration of current practices in the UK. Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management. 11 (2), 71-84

Holt, D., (2003). The role and impact of the business school curriculum in shaping environmental education at Middlesex University. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education. 4 (4), 324-343

Ghobadian, A., Viney, H. and Holt, D., (2001). Seeking congruence in implementing corporate environmental strategy. International Journal of Environmental Technology and Management. 1 (4), 384-384

Holt, D., Anthony, S. and Howard, V., (2000). Supporting Environmental Improvements in Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises in the UK. Greener Management International. 2000 (30), 29-49

Holt, D., (1998). The perceived benefits of an environmental management standard. Business Process Management Journal. 4 (3), 204-213

Book chapters (2)

Littlewood, D. and Holt, D., (2015). Social and Environmental Enterprises in Africa: Context, Convergence and Characteristics. In: The Business of Social and Environmental Innovation. Springer International Publishing. 27- 47. 9783319040509

Holt, DL. and Littlewood, D., (2014). The informal economy as a route to market in sub-Saharan Africa – observations amongst Kenyan informal economy entrepreneurs. In: The Routledge Companion to Business in Africa. Routledge. 198- 217. 0415635454. 9780415635455

Grants and funding


Identifying soil pathogens in rural farms in Kenya

University of Essex

Newton Fund - Kenya Fieldwork

Higher Education Funding Council (Hefce)


Using low impact technologies for sustainable agriculture - workshops with informal economy manufacturers and women farmers.

University of Essex

Inclusion and formalisation of Amazonia informal economy entrepreneurs in MNC value chains - mechanisms, partnerships and impacts

The British Academy


South African PhD Partnering Network

Economic & Social Research Council


Development through Enterprise-Inclusive and sustainable futures through initiatives and cross sector partnerships

British Council

+44 (0) 1206 873305


EBS.3.33, Colchester Campus

Academic support hours:

You can find details of Academic Support hours on the EBS UG and PG information page on Moodle or by calling EBS Student Services on 01206873911