Sustainability Science

http://link.springer.com/journal/11625

List of Papers (Total 143)

Teaching and learning sustainability: An assessment of the curriculum content and structure of sustainability degree programs in higher education

Sustainability degree programs in higher education have proliferated with the emergence of sustainability as a recognized academic field. This study evaluated the curricula of English-language programs granting degrees in sustainability by analyzing 27 bachelor’s and 27 master’s sustainability programs based on their (1) curricular structure, in terms of the proportion of core...

Towards adequately framing sustainability goals in research projects: the case of land use studies

Sustainability-oriented undertakings employ a multitude of different definitions and understandings of the term sustainable development. Against this background, the question of which sustainability goals to refer to at project level must be posed. This article discusses this question using the example of research on land use issues. It presents a qualitative in-depth empirical...

Sisters in sustainability: municipal partnerships for social, environmental, and economic growth

While debates about sustainable development tend to focus on national- and international-scale problems, sustainability programs and research generally focus on the regional, county, municipal, or even household level. Less research has focused on evaluating the benefits of pairing two cities (i.e., sister city partnerships) with different needs and capabilities to jointly...

Assessing the sustainability of wheat-based cropping systems using simulation modelling: sustainability = 42?

Concepts of agricultural sustainability and possible roles of simulation modelling for characterising sustainability were explored by conducting, and reflecting on, a sustainability assessment of rain-fed wheat-based systems in the Middle East and North Africa region. We designed a goal-oriented, model-based framework using the cropping systems model Agricultural Production...

Biophysical suitability, economic pressure and land-cover change: a global probabilistic approach and insights for REDD+

There has been a concerted effort by the international scientific community to understand the multiple causes and patterns of land-cover change to support sustainable land management. Here, we examined biophysical suitability, and a novel integrated index of “Economic Pressure on Land” (EPL) to explain land cover in the year 2000, and estimated the likelihood of future land-cover...

Physical basis of coastal adaptation on tropical small islands

Small tropical islands are widely recognized as having high exposure and vulnerability to climate change and other natural hazards. Ocean warming and acidification, changing storm patterns and intensity, and accelerated sea-level rise pose challenges that compound the intrinsic vulnerability of small, remote, island communities. Sustainable development requires robust guidance on...

Anthropogenic impacts on water quality of the lagoonal coast of Fongafale Islet, Funafuti Atoll, Tuvalu

Water pollution, evident by negative values of redox potential in waters, occurs at the lagoonal coast located near the densely populated area of Fongafale Islet on Funafuti Atoll, Tuvalu, Central Pacific. Sediment microbial quinone analysis revealed that these coastal sediments exhibit 2.7–10.4 times more microbial biomass, significantly different microbial community structure...

Living without buffers—illustrating climate vulnerability in the Lake Victoria basin

Exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity are essential, albeit theoretically vague, components of climate vulnerability. This has triggered debate surrounding how these factors can be translated into, and understood in, an empirical context subject to present and future harm. In this article, which draws on extensive fieldwork in the Lake Victoria Basin of Kenya and Tanzania...

The Sustainability Babel Fish

This paper proposes a quantitative measure of sustainability. Using primary energy as a metric, it enables decisions to be made across different activities such as electricity, fuel and water use. By relying on bill data, we eliminate the need for new measurements and readily connect to economics through market prices. We choose the primary energy content of a gallon of gasoline...

Upscaling of business model experiments in off-grid PV solar energy in India

Rapidly developing countries like India face numerous challenges related to social and environmental sustainability, which are associated with their fast economic growth and rising energy demand, climate change, and widening disparities between the rich and the poor. Recently, a number of claims have been made in the literature that the prospects of alternative development...

Technological feasibility and costs of achieving a 50 % reduction of global GHG emissions by 2050: mid- and long-term perspectives

In this article we examine the technological feasibility of the global target of reducing GHG emissions to 50 % of the 1990 level by the year 2050. We also perform a detailed analysis of the contribution of low-carbon technologies to GHG emission reduction over mid- and long-term timeframes, and evaluate the required technological cost. For the analysis we use AIM/Enduse[Global...

Low-carbon transitions in world regions: comparison of technological mitigation potential and costs in 2020 and 2030 through bottom-up analyses

This study focuses on low-carbon transitions in the mid-term and analyzes mitigation potentials of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in 2020 and 2030 in a comparison based on bottom-up-type models. The study provides in-depth analyses of technological mitigation potentials and costs by sector and analyzes marginal abatement cost (MAC) curves from 0 to 200 US $/tCO2 eq in major...

Visioneering: an essential framework in sustainability science

The science of sustainability has inevitably emerged as a vibrant field of research and education that transcends disciplinary boundaries and focuses increasingly on understanding the dynamics of social-ecological systems (SES). Yet, sustainability remains an elusive concept, and its nature seems unclear for the most part. In order to truly mobilize people and nations towards...

Structuring sustainability science

It is urgent in science and society to address climate change and other sustainability challenges such as biodiversity loss, deforestation, depletion of marine fish stocks, global ill-health, land degradation, land use change and water scarcity. Sustainability science (SS) is an attempt to bridge the natural and social sciences for seeking creative solutions to these complex...