Geraint Howells, Iain Ramsay and Thomas Wilhelmsson
This introduction explains why the handbook is needed. It discusses the scope of consumer law and provides an overview of its historical development and theoretical rationales. It also considers to what extent there is an international consumer law.
Chapter I provides an overview of the issues addressed in this book and its structure. It also makes the important distinction between situations of State succession and those of State identity. Finally, it explains the classification adopted in this book of the six different types of State succession.
Despite 40 years of research on sustainability, most of the commonly used measures of sustainability such as pollution, population, consumption, biodiversity and atmospheric carbon have all worsened on a global scale. This chapter suggests we must go beyond scientific research and study problems to solve what could be termed the real-world problems of global sustainability. It discusses transdisciplinary sustainability science that is impactful and responsive to stakeholders’ needs. It seeks to understand better the interactions between natural and human systems in key challenge areas, including global climate change, food–water–energy, biodiversity and natural assets, environmental impacts on health, oceans, urbanization, sustainable consumption and production, and governance processes. It also discusses what is termed Future Earth's “knowledge action networks” designed to develop transdisciplinary, stakeholder-engaged, co-designed solutions.