Exploring sustainability science: Knowledge, institutions and innovation

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Global sustainability concerns long-term constraints on resources, including, among others, food, water and energy. The challenge of sustainability is the reconciliation of society’s development goals with the planet’s environmental limits over the long term (Clark and Dickson, 2003). The new field of sustainability science now being developed aims at understanding the fundamental character of interactions among natural, human and social systems (Clark and Dickson, 2003; Kates et al., 2001; Komiyama and Takeuchi, 2006). Sustainability science concerns various domains, including nature (for example, climate, oceans, rivers, plants and other components of the natural environment), technology (for example, machinery, chemicals, biotechnology, materials and energy) and society (for example, economy, industry, finance, demography, culture, ethics and history). The academic landscape of sustainability science likewise consists of clusters of diverse disciplines (Kajikawa et al., 2007).

Related Subject(s): Environment and Climate Change
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