Sustainability Science for Strong Sustainability

Sustainability Science for Strong Sustainability

Tom Dedeurwaerdere

The dynamism of science has been catalytic for human prosperity in recent history. Conventional perspectives of the ivory tower model of modern science are, however, rivalled by the failure of humanity to tackle global crises of an economic, environmental and social nature. Operational solutions to these pressures have grown and exposed pitfalls of modern science to date. Sustainability Science for Strong Sustainability investigates core concepts, tools and institutional strategies of transdisciplinary sustainability science. Prominent research programs within heterodox economics, the environmental sciences and transition theory are explored through diverse case studies, revealing challenges and advancements for transdisciplinary research. In this book, the reform of modern science is facilitated by the consideration of action points to overcome the institutional barriers of putting sustainability science into practice. Researchers, students and policy practitioners will benefit from up to date knowledge on the practice of transdisciplinary research for sustainability.

Chapter 5: Building institutional capacity for sustainability science

Tom Dedeurwaerdere

Subjects: environment, ecological economics, politics and public policy, environmental governance and regulation

Extract

Promoters of sustainability science within the research and policy-making community face the critical challenge of establishing this new field of research as a recognized scientific practice. In spite of the growth of the sustainability science community, the challenge remains a particularly difficult one as sustainability science leads to two main transformations of conventional science practice: first, the adoption of the methodological tools and epistemology of interdisciplinary analysis of socio-ecological systems and, second, the adoption of a participatory transdisciplinary research practice to overcome the dichotomy between science and society in governing the transition towards sustainability.