Sustainable development (1987-2005): an oxymoron comes of age
AbstractThe paper examines the conceptual history of 'sustainable development', from the Brundtland Commission's definition in 1987 to the present day. It argues that the superficial consensus that has characterized much of the early debate has given way to a series of parallel but distinct discourses around sustainability. The underlying assumptions behind much of the discussion are assessed, as is the move, after the first Earth Summit (1992), to focus on rights, rather than needs, as the principal line of enquiry. This analytical attention to rights is linked to the neo-liberal economic agendas of the 1990s, and the growth of interest in congruent areas, including human security and the environment, social capital, critical natural capital and intellectual property rights. The paper argues that increasing attention to questions of biology and science studies has strengthened this 'rights-based' approach, as well as interest in the linkages between 'natural' and 'human' systems, including attention to questions of environmental justice. It is clear that issues of global environmental justice are as important as they were when the concept of 'sustainable development' was in its infancy, but the new material realities of science and the environment in the 21st century demand a re-engagement with their social consequences, something which is largely ignored by the (market) liberal consensus. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Sustainable Development.
Volume (Year): 13 (2005)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1002/(ISSN)1099-1719
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Ekins, Paul, 2003. "Identifying critical natural capital: Conclusions about critical natural capital," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2-3), pages 277-292, March.
- Wilfred Beckerman, 1994. "'Sustainable Development': Is it a Useful Concept?," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 3(3), pages 191-209, August.
- Oluf Langhelle, 2000. "Sustainable Development and Social Justice: Expanding the Rawlsian Framework of Global Justice," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 9(3), pages 295-323, August.
- Razvan V. Mustata & Carmen Giorgiana Bonaci & Cristina Hintea & Bogdana Neamtu, 2013. "Business Education For Sustainable Development: The Case of Romanian Universities," The AMFITEATRU ECONOMIC journal, Academy of Economic Studies - Bucharest, Romania, vol. 15(Special 7), pages 802-818, November.
- Emmanuel Kumi & Albert Arhin & Thomas Yeboah, 2014. "Can post-2015 sustainable development goals survive neoliberalism? A critical examination of the sustainable development–neoliberalism nexus in developing countries," Environment, Development and Sustainability, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 539-554, June.
- Ezebilo, Eugene E. & Mattsson, Leif, 2010. "Socio-economic benefits of protected areas as perceived by local people around Cross River National Park, Nigeria," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 189-193, March.
- Denise Baden & Ian Harwood, 2013. "Terminology Matters: A Critical Exploration of Corporate Social Responsibility Terms," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 116(3), pages 615-627, September.
- Bev Wilson & Arnab Chakraborty, 2013. "The Environmental Impacts of Sprawl: Emergent Themes from the Past Decade of Planning Research," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(8), pages 3302-3327, August.
- Philip Walsh, 2011. "Creating a “values” chain for sustainable development in developing nations: where Maslow meets Porter," Environment, Development and Sustainability, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 789-805, August.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.