21 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2001
Date Written: December 2000
The world's present development path is not sustainable. Efforts to meet the needs of a growing population in an interconnected but unequal and human-dominated world are undermining the Earth's essential life-support systems. Meeting fundamental human needs while preserving the life support systems of planet Earth will require a world-wide acceleration of today's halting progress in a transition toward sustainability. A significant response to this challenge has begun to emerge as a new field of sustainability science. This paper, written by a group of leading natural scientists, social scientists, and policy analysts from around the world, outlines the core questions of the field, the extensions of existing research strategies that will be required to address those questions successfully, and the institutional innovations that will be needed to develop an integrated system of research, assessment and decision support adequate for the task at hand.
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