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Sustainability lives on

I attended my very first academic conference in 2011. It was the British Accounting and Finance Association (BAFA) Accounting Education Special Interest Group Conference. I can still see myself sitting at the final plenary session in a beautiful oak-beamed room at Winchester University, and hearing Professor Neil Marriott talk about academic responsibility – about how it is up to each of us to support our fellow researchers. An apparently simple idea but one that resonated with me hugely.

That autumn I was the beneficiary of such support when the Group held a weekend where novice writers were helped to write their first journal articles – and I was so lucky that Professor Alan Sangster was my mentor. Nearly ten years later I am still learning but am now in a position to be able to support others. It is just so important that each of us takes from and then gives back to that development cycle, if we are going to sustain our academic communities into the future. I am indebted to so many academic colleagues who have supported me over the last ten years.

One of them, tragically, is no longer with us. Professor Jeffrey Unerman died in November after a short illness. Jeffrey was most recently the Professor of Sustainability Accounting at Lancaster University having previously worked at Royal Holloway College, London. The tribute in the recent BAFA newsletter read: