Sustainable Development Drivers

Sustainable Development Drivers

The Role of Leadership in Government, Business and NGO Performance

Edited by Kees Zoeteman

Sustainable development cannot be prescribed – rather, it results from conscious personal choices in government, business and NGOs. This thought-provoking book explores both the origins and future of the global sustainable development movement, and provides an original overview of the driving forces of sustainable development, including market forces and past and future trends.

Chapter 15: Trends, Crises and Sustainability

Kees Zoeteman

Subjects: business and management, business leadership, development studies, development studies, economics and finance, environmental economics, environment, environmental economics


Kees Zoeteman SUMMARY This chapter discusses future trends and possible crises and their likely impact on sustainable development in countries and corporations. The continuing interconnectedness of global events calls for intensified global governance. The trend since 2000, however, is a weakening of global governance – probably until serious global crises will unite the nations on earth again. Natural resource scarcity and the search for improved economic stability support the application of sustainable development concepts. However, supporting trends may be overruled by negative trends, such as the growing illegal economy. On top of such trends, global crises may under certain conditions support acceleration towards a more sustainable society. Several factors can support the transformative power of crises. However, national interests of governments often jeopardize collective global interests. In coming decades, sustainable development is therefore more likely to be further included in corporate strategies than in national policies. INTRODUCTION Will sustainable development continue to be a leading issue for those actors which have understood it and implemented it? Will others join this group, or will the issue gradually disappear from the agendas of governments and corporations? A striking fact is that the concept of sustainable development has survived nearly three decades and has deepened in meaning and impact on society. Yet, as was shown in the previous chapters, only few social actors have fully embraced its scope. This means that a further expansion of its impact is possible. This potential to move to higher sustainability attitudes is present at individual, corporate as well...

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