What is Sustainability Economics?

12 Pages Posted: 8 Sep 2009 Last revised: 30 May 2014

See all articles by Stefan Baumgärtner

Stefan Baumgärtner

University of Freiburg - Department of Environment and Natural Resources

Martin F. Quaas

German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig

Date Written: September 8, 2009

Abstract

While economists have been contributing to the discussion of various aspects of sustainability for decades, it is just recently that the term “sustainability economics” was used explicitly in the ecological, environmental, and resource economics community. Yet, the contributions that use the term “sustainability economics” do not refer to any explicit definition of the term, and are not obviously joined by common or unifying characteristics, such as subject focus, methodology, or institutional background. The question thus arises: What is “sustainability economics” In this essay, we systematically define and delineate “sustainability economics” in terms of its normative foundation, aims, subject matter, ontology, and genuine research agenda.

Keywords: economics, efficiency, epistemology, fairness, future, justice, human-nature relationship, ontology, philosophy of science, sustainability, uncertainty

JEL Classification: Q0, D63, B0

Suggested Citation

Baumgärtner, Stefan and Quaas, Martin F., What is Sustainability Economics? (September 8, 2009). Ecological Economics, Vol. 69, No. 3, pp. 445-450, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1469961

Stefan Baumgärtner (Contact Author)

University of Freiburg - Department of Environment and Natural Resources ( email )

Tennebacher Str. 4
Freiburg, 79106
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.ere.uni-freiburg.de

Martin F. Quaas

German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv) Halle-Jena-Leipzig ( email )

Deutscher Platz 5e
Leipzig, 04103
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.idiv.de/bioecon

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