Studies on the Social Dimensions of Industrial Ecology series
Edited by Pauline Deutz, Donald I. Lyons and Jun Bi
Chapter 1: Introducing an international perspective on industrial ecology
The aim of this book is to promote a debate about the relationship between industrial ecology (IE), as a business, community and academic endeavour, and the places in the world where examples of industrial ecology can be found. We present analyses of IE demonstrating its context and variability on a global scale. After 25 years of activity, industrial ecology studies and practices can be found across the globe. The commonalities, associated constraints and opportunities are widely discussed in the burgeoning literature. An additional commonality, seldom explored, is that these examples are all happening somewhere. The significance of location for the IE activity attempted, the outcome of that attempt, and the transferability of lessons to other locations are rarely considered. Furthermore, studies are conducted from somewhere, not necessarily the same place where the IE activities are rooted. Originally inspired by a session on IE and geography at the International Sustainable Development Research Society conference in Hong Kong in 2010, we have expanded the range of contributions to the book to provide a genuinely global reach in terms of both case studies and authorship. This book provides contextualised overviews of the current state of IE in specific countries or continents, it explores case studies of different types of IE, in a variety of settings (including developed and developing countries), and provides comparisons between different national contexts.