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Sustainability Science

A Multidisciplinary Approach

image of Sustainability Science
Sustainability science is an academic discipline that emerged in response to threats to the sustainability of the global environment. Its purpose is to help build a sustainable society by developing solutions to climate change, the exhaustion of resources, ecological destruction and other environmental crises that threaten the future of humanity. Sustainability science seeks comprehensive, integrated solutions to complex problems and a restructuring of education and research that spans multiple disciplines. It demands the development of policies that protect the natural and cultural diversity of different regions and promotes the physical and economic health of their inhabitants. This volume offers approaches to the development of a transdisciplinary perspective that embraces natural, social and human sciences in the quest for a sustainable society. It also strives for a global perspective while incorporating the wisdom and experience of local societies.

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Multifaceted aspects of sustainability science

Sustainability science deals with problems containing various aspects that are interlinked with each other. In many cases, such problems take a relatively long time to solve, which makes the nature of the mitigation complicated. Regarding the climate change issue, the projection of Earth’s temperature rise is a problem for physicists; however, estimates of the effects of temperature rise on water resources, crop production, sea-level rise, infectious disease, fisheries and forestry are carried out by scientists and engineers in various fields. In order to implement effective climate change mitigation programmes in society, suitable political systems and attractive business opportunities should be developed for an extended period of time. In addition, scientific findings and new technologies have to be accepted by society. In order to mitigate global warming effectively, various areas of academia, politics, business and society have to cooperate. None of them should be left out. Many problems today are of similar complexity and require communication and cooperation among different kinds of people. This can be expected to have a synergistic effect in promoting innovations and dramatically accelerating the solution rate.

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