IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Whose Sustainability? Environmental Domination and Sen's Capability Approach

Listed author(s):
  • Fabian Scholtes
Registered author(s):

    Dealing with nature according to a concept of sustainability extends contingent, particular valuations of nature into the space of the options of others, especially those of future generations. When such an imposition of valuations circumscribes the options of others in a definitive way, sustainability—despite any contrary intentions—implies “environmental domination”. This article asks how concepts of sustainability may respond to this problem. It suggests three criteria. These are: the accessibility as well as reflectiveness of reasons for dealing with nature; the acceptability of the valuational reference of these reasons; and openness towards fundamentally different ideas of “the good”. Based on these criteria, the article then analyses how Sen's Capability Approach to development conceives of sustainability and valuations of nature. It suggests that the approach responds to the first two criteria and thus seems a promising base for conceptualizing sustainability. With respect to the third, doubts remain and this is taken to be a challenge to the approach.

    If 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.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Oxford Development Studies.

    Volume (Year): 38 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 289-307

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:taf:oxdevs:v:38:y:2010:i:3:p:289-307
    DOI: 10.1080/13600818.2010.505683
    Contact details of provider: Web page:

    Order Information: Web:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:taf:oxdevs:v:38:y:2010:i:3:p:289-307. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chris Longhurst)

    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.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.