Justifying, extending and applying "nexus" thinking in the quest for sustainable development

Karen Hussey, Jamie Pittock, Stephen Dovers

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterResearch

    Abstract

    There was a time, not very long ago, when scholars, policy makers and those engaged in private enterprise were consumed by the quest for sustainable development. Gaining prominence after the 1987 Brundtland Report and subsequent UN-sponsored conferences, the concept of sustainable development demanded and received enormous attention over several decades, and in many ways, the achievements of those heady days are remarkable. For example, the key tenets of sustainable development - notably, the principles of precaution, policy integration, inter- and intra-generational equity, and the polluter pays principle - were incorporated into significant international law and into the domestic policies of almost every country on earth. The sense of urgency and import generated in that period also ushered in a suite of initiatives and instruments to support the process towards sustainable development, from ‘triple bottom line reporting’ and ‘corporate social responsibility’, through to the mainstreaming of environmental impact assessments and third-party certification of environmental practices. Not surprisingly, the momentum generated from the late 1980s onwards was matched by a concomitant rise in the representation of pro-environment parties in many countries, the establishment of national and state departments of the environment, and the proliferation of sustainability-related professions and associated educational offerings. But somewhere along the way sustainable development - the ideological concept, process and goal - has almost disappeared from the international stage. Indeed, notwithstanding its rebadging to a green economy by UNEP, ‘green growth’ and the post-Rio+20 emergence of Sustainable Development Goals, it is fair to say that the global effort expended on ‘sustainable development’ has faded, replaced by similar levels of zeal and activity targeted at climate change. Why is that the case? Perhaps because the all-encompassing scope of ‘sustainable development’ made it unwieldy and intractable in practice? Or was it a consequence of the characteristic boredom that humanity exhibits when a concept lurks too long or is too difficult to achieve?

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationClimate, energy and water
    Subtitle of host publicationManaging trade-offs, seizing opportunities
    Place of PublicationUnited States of America
    PublisherCambridge University Press
    Chapter1
    Pages1-5
    Number of pages5
    ISBN (Electronic)9781139248792
    ISBN (Print)9781107029163
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2015

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    sustainable development
    educational offerings
    polluter pays principle
    integration policy
    boredom
    private enterprise
    domestic policy
    social responsibility
    international law
    proliferation
    import
    certification
    environmental impact
    UNO
    equity
    climate change
    profession
    sustainability
    economy

    Cite this

    Hussey, K., Pittock, J., & Dovers, S. (2015). Justifying, extending and applying "nexus" thinking in the quest for sustainable development. In Climate, energy and water: Managing trade-offs, seizing opportunities (pp. 1-5). United States of America: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139248792.001
    Hussey, Karen ; Pittock, Jamie ; Dovers, Stephen. / Justifying, extending and applying "nexus" thinking in the quest for sustainable development. Climate, energy and water: Managing trade-offs, seizing opportunities. United States of America : Cambridge University Press, 2015. pp. 1-5
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    Hussey, K, Pittock, J & Dovers, S 2015, Justifying, extending and applying "nexus" thinking in the quest for sustainable development. in Climate, energy and water: Managing trade-offs, seizing opportunities. Cambridge University Press, United States of America, pp. 1-5. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139248792.001

    Justifying, extending and applying "nexus" thinking in the quest for sustainable development. / Hussey, Karen; Pittock, Jamie; Dovers, Stephen.

    Climate, energy and water: Managing trade-offs, seizing opportunities. United States of America : Cambridge University Press, 2015. p. 1-5.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterResearch

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    Hussey K, Pittock J, Dovers S. Justifying, extending and applying "nexus" thinking in the quest for sustainable development. In Climate, energy and water: Managing trade-offs, seizing opportunities. United States of America: Cambridge University Press. 2015. p. 1-5 https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139248792.001