Aboriginal principles for sustainable development as told in traditional law stories
AbstractSustainable development has become an arena where people bring already existing political and philosophical outlooks to a debate characterized by fundamental dichotomies. This paper presents an analysis of ten Australian Aboriginal law stories to derive a range of principles for how the Nhunggabarra people of Australia sustained their society against three such dichotomies: holism versus fragmentation, 'strong' versus 'weak' SD and growth versus no-growth economy. The Aboriginal sustainability model is possibly the oldest we have some evidence of, with a successful track record of several tens of thousands of years. It is a surprisingly 'realistic' model: neither representative of strong SD, nor giving arguments to no-growth proponents. The paper argues against a common perception that modern industrialized societies cannot learn from indigenous societies: it is a matter of perspective. Although many practices and solutions are not viable for our time, we can learn from the principles and the governance models as a whole. The Nhunggabarra society model provides a set of such principles, with a sustainability track record. Australia, therefore, has two models, the Aboriginal and the industrial, both implemented on a continent, which can be seen as a bellwether for the planet as a whole - a unique learning opportunity for the discourse on sustainable development. Copyright © 2009 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): 17 (2009)
Issue (Month): 6 ()
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.:
- Judith E. M. Klostermann & Jacqueline Cramer, 2006. "The contextual meaning of sustainable development: the case of the Dutch drinking water sector," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(4), pages 268-276.
- Geoffrey Lamberton, 2005. "Sustainable sufficiency - an internally consistent version of sustainability," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(1), pages 53-68.
- Ali Bagheri & Peder Hjorth, 2007. "Planning for sustainable development: a paradigm shift towards a process-based approach," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(2), pages 83-96.
- Antoni Skowroński, 2008. "A civilization based on sustainable development: its limits and prospects," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(2), pages 117-125.
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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.