Bibliography of Literature Relevant to Our Future Sustainability

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IX.        What is Sustainability and Sustainable Development?

 Bounce me down to the bibliography citations

What’s Here

This bibliography is concerned with disturbing environmental and social trends, along with the potential to make things better and the risks if we don’t.  This section focuses on articles that help define, critique, and differentiate between the sustainability and sustainable development paradigms.  Both offer principles and frameworks for interventions meant to foster a better future. 

Section X follows this section up with articles focused on the how and why of teaching around sustainability and infusing its principles into the missions of our teaching institutions.  Section XI (Sustainability Manifestos) shares articles and reports that diagnose our fundamental problems and recommend ways to transform our lifestyles, governance, and socioeconomic systems to get our civilization into harmony with the planet and foster greater well-being for all in ways that can be sustained indefinitely.  This section (What is Sustainability and Sustainable Development?), its citations, and the following lengthy preface are offered as something separate from sections X and XI because sustainability and sustainable development are slippery, contestable concepts requiring some unpacking in order to better understand the variety in the articles shared in the next two sections of the bibliography.

Speaking in generalities… I think it is all too common for people to think that sustainability is synonymous with environmentalism.  Environmentalists are primarily advocating for the preservation and restoration of natural ecosystems and measures to retain biodiversity and environmental health.  As human society has a big net negative impact on the biosphere, minimizing human interaction with ecosystems is a common prescription.

While sustainability and sustainable development are also concerned with the enhancement of natural ecosystems, they are differentiated from environmentalism by their equal or greater emphasis on enhancing the well-being of people.  At its most basic, for something to be sustainable means that it can continue to do what it does indefinitely.  Both sustainability and sustainable development as movements are out to sustain (increasingly) equitable, just, and healthy human societies while also recognizing that the success of this never ending project absolutely relies on the preservation of a relatively stable and verdant earth system and the services it provides.

So how do sustainability and sustainable development differ?  Sustainable development has a more circumscribed accepted meaning and a narrower range of advocates and practitioners.  Its practitioners are also much better funded.  Sustainable development blossomed as a named paradigm in 1987.  It was the brainchild of the World Commission on Environment and Development that produced what is now commonly referred to as the Bruntland Report.1  The Bruntland Report was most notable for recommending that environmental quality, economic development, and human rights challenges needed to be considered as intertwined and thus addressed together.

The sustainable development paradigm was quickly conceptualized with diagrams like the one seen in Figure 1 and co-opted by the business world in their attempts to use the “triple bottom line” as a lens for assessing projects and investments.2  In this conceptualization, each element (environment, society, economy) are considered as largely separate entities of fairly equivalent importance. The Bruntland Report also yielded the most widely quoted definition of sustainable development: “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”


Many additional diagrams meant to represent the conceptual elements of sustainability and/or sustainable development can be seen here.

Figure 1. Triple legged stool model for sustainable development.  From Hummel (2016).

Figure 2. A conceptual diagram from Flint (2010) titled The Framework and Directionality of Systemic Sustainability Science.


This conceptual model apparent in Figure 1 and the Bruntland Report definition of sustainable development, along with the values they represent, have been subject to criticism from the get-go.  Note that the definition above is almost entirely anthropocentric, with little clarity as to how needs are defined or how far into the future this cautionary formula is meant to extend. But the more fundamental criticism of this sustainable development model is in how it overemphasizes the independence and importance of economic development.  People who are sympathetic to this critique are more likely to favor the bullseye model seen in Figure 2, where society and economy are embedded within the environment, and thus are clearly seen as being entirely dependent upon its function and integrity.3  These same critics are likely to consider the sustainable development phrase as an oxymoron.  If development means ever increasing throughput of natural resources into our socioeconomic systems, with the primary purpose of the natural world to serve as a utilitarian source for plunder and a sink for our wastes, then the perpetual growth impetus can only come at unsustainable cost to biodiversity and ecosystem integrity.  This erodes the very foundation on which our social and economic systems stand (or fall). 

Nonetheless, the sustainable development movement chugs along. It is championed by the United Nations and its principles animate the many initiatives and agencies it sponsors. The initiatives tend to manifest as top-down efforts featuring outside expertise and money applied in developing countries.  These efforts are meant to advance progress in the 17 sustainable development goals.4 , 5  While progress toward meeting most of the goals and their indicators is falling short of desired benchmarks, many years of effort have yielded many tangible gains, such as:

-          The under-5 mortality rate fell by 49% between 2000 and 2017.

-          The share of the world’s population living in extreme poverty decreased to 10 per cent in 2015, down from 36 per cent in 1990.

-          In Southern Asia, a girl’s risk of marrying in childhood has decreased by 40% since 2000.

-          9 out of 10 people worldwide now have access to electricity.

-          104 out of 220 coastal regions improved their coastal water quality between 2012 and 2018.5

However, the 2019 Sustainable Development Goals report warns that many or all of the gains like these are likely to be reversed, while negative trends will accelerate, if we don’t limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.6  This calls into question the sufficiency of the sustainable development model, which has at least been tolerated by national governments and the world of business, for fostering an ever improving society.

In comparison to the sustainable development paradigm, the sustainability paradigm is more poorly defined and malleable. Advocates of sustainability represent a broader spectrum of values and preferred prescriptions for what ails our society.  Sustainable development is calibrated to the world that is, with its practitioners committed to working within (and thus perpetuating) the neoliberal capitalism framework.  As such, it lies at the hierarchical, incremental end of the spectrum of the sustainability movement. Other proposals representative of sustainability envision a future society that is decidedly different than the one we take for granted. Most of them start with a critique of capitalism and its ruthless pursuit of growth at the cost of biodiversity, equity, and health. Then they envision other ways of organizing society that are based in more egalitarian and communitarian ethics and favor grassroots-up cultural transformation to affect the transition out of a perceived dead-end socio-economic system. 

There are many more nuances to sustainability and sustainable development, thus the citations offered below.  How do these paradigms relate to resilience?  What is the difference between strong and weak sustainability?  Just how radical do sustainability advocates get?  What are its historical underpinnings? What are the critiques against the sustainability movement?  Compared to other sections of the bibliography, however, there aren’t quite as many citations to wade through! 

As an introduction to sustainability, I tend to have my students read the first two chapters of the Dresner book, and/or the article by Prugh and Assadourian.   I also have students compare and contrast many definitions of sustainability and sustainable development, included in a document you can download here, then identify the common threads.  Furthermore, I find it to be very insightful to connect the literature that is explicitly about sustainability cited below and in section XI with the literature in section III that is about the development and expression of values, ethics, and political ideologies.  Through this kind of synthesis one can better understand where these sustainability proposals are coming from, why there is variability among them, and why there is so much reflexive pushback against them.




ACCIONA (2016). What is Sustainability?  [A short video.]


Adams, W (2006). The Future of Sustainability: Re-thinking Environment and Development in the Twenty-first Century. Report of the IUCN Renowned Thinkers Meeting, 29-31 January. International Union for Conservation of Nature.


Adams, W (2009). Green Development: Environment and Sustainability in a Developing World. Routledge, 3rd edition. [book]


Ahmed, N (2015). UN Plan to Save Earth is “Fig Leaf” for Big Business Insiders: Why the New Sustainable Development Agenda is “Fundamentally Compromised” by Corporate Interests. Sept. 15. IWW Environmental Unionism Caucus.


Albrecht, G (2020). Ethics, Anarchy and Sustainable Development. Psychoterratica, July 28. [Emphasis on the philosophical roots, inherent inequities, and promises of the sustainable development paradigm and right wing vs. left wing formulations for localism and against authoritarianism.]


The Alternative UK (2020). Here Come the Time Rebels! Japan's "Future Design" Movement Shows How to Factor Future Generations Into Our Politics.


Asara, V, Otero, I, Demaria, F and Corbera, E (2015). Socially Sustainable Degrowth as a Social–ecological Transformation: Repoliticizing Sustainability. Sustainability Science, 10.


Bakari, M (2014a). Sustainability's Inner Conflicts: From 'Ecologism' to 'Ecological Modernization.' Journal of Sustainable Development Studies, 6(1).


Bakari, M (2014b). Sustainability and Contemporary Man-Nature Divide: Aspects of Conflict, Alienation, and Beyond. Consilience: The Journal of Sustainable Development, 13(1).


Balch, O (2013). Buen Vivir: The Social Philosophy Inspiring Movements in South America. The Guardian, Feb. 4.


Barry, J (1996). Sustainability, Political Judgement and Citizenship: Connecting Green Politics and Democracy, in Doherty, B and de Geus, M (eds.) Democracy and Green Political Thought. Routledge.


Barry, J (2012). The Politics of Actually Existing Unsustainability. Oxford University Press, NY.


Bartlett, A (1997). Reflections on Sustainability, Population Growth, and the Environment – Revisited. Renewable Resources Journal, 15(4).


BBC (2020). Sustainable Thinking.  BBC Ideas.  [Access to a series of videos related to aspects of sustainability.]


Beling, A, Vanhulst, J, Demaria, F, Rabi, B, Carballo, A and Pelenc, J (2018). Discursive Synergies for a ‘Great Transformation’ Towards Sustainability: Pragmatic Contributions to a Necessary Dialogue Between Human Development, Degrowth, and Buen Vivir. Ecological Economics, 144.'Great_Transformation'_Towards_Sustainability_Pragmatic_Contributions_to_a_Necessary_Dialogue_Between_Human_Development_Degrowth_and_Buen_Vivir


Bennett, E, Biggs, R, Peterson, G and Gordon, J (2021). Patchwork Earth: Navigating Pathways to Just, Thriving, and Sustainable Futures. One Earth, 4(2).


Blewitt, J (2008). Understanding Sustainable Development. Earthscan, London.


Blythe, J, Silver, J, Evans, L, Armitage, D, Bennet, N, Moore, M, Morrison, T and Brown, K (2018). The Dark Side of Transformation: Latent Risks in Contemporary Sustainability Discourse. Antipode, 50(5). or


Board on Sustainable Development, National Research Council (1999). Our Common Journey: A Transition Toward Sustainability. National Academy Press. Executive summary: Full report:


Boehnert, J (2019). Transition Design and Ecological Thought. Cuadernos del Centro de Estudios en Diseño y Comunicación, 73.


Boffey, D (2020). Amsterdam to Embrace 'Doughnut' Model to Mend Post-coronavirus Economy. The Guardian, April 8.


Bonnet, M (2006). Education for Sustainability as a Frame of Mind. Environmental Education Research, 12(3-4).


Bowers, K (2018). Sustainability vs. Resiliency: Designing for a Trajectory of Change. The Field, July 12. American Society of Landscape Architects.


Brand, U and Wissen, M (2018). What Kind of Great Transformation? The Imperial Mode of Living as a Major Obstacle to Sustainability Politics. GAIA - Ecological Perspectives for Science and Society, 27(3). or;jsessionid=16bbip2eh231p.x-ic-live-01


Bringezu, S (2015). Possible Target Corridor for Sustainable Use of Global Material Resources. Resources, 4(10): 25-54.


Bruce, D (2008). How Sustainable Are We? European Molecular Biology Organization Reports, 9.


Burke. M (2018). Shared Yet Contested: Energy Democracy Counter-Narratives. Frontiers in Communication, 3(22).


Burkhardt, J (1989). The Morality Behind Sustainability. Journal of Agricultural Ethics, 2: 113-128. or


Chaigneau, T et al. (2021). Reconciling Well-being and Resilience for Sustainable Development. Nature Sustainability, .


Cimadamore, A, Mittelmark, M, Lie, G and Ottemoller, F (eds.). (2016). Development and Sustainability: The Challenge of Social Change. [Open access book, 8 chapters.]


Clark, H (2020). A Future for the World’s Children? A WHO-UNICEF-Lancet Commission. The Lancet Commissions, 395(10224).


Clark, W (2001). A Transition Toward Sustainability. Ecology Law Quarterly, 27(4).


Clark, W and Harley, A (2020). Sustainability Science: Toward a Synthesis. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 45.


Cohen, S (2019). Beyond Climate: The Crisis of Environmental Sustainability. Earth Institute, Columbia University, Sept. 23.


Cohen, S (2020). Defining and Measuring Sustainability. State of the Planet, Oct. 19. Columbia University. [Emphasis on sustainability reporting/tracking in the corporate world.]


Cohen, S (2021). Climate and COVID as Crises of Environmental Sustainability. State of the Planet, Feb. 8. Earth Institute, Columbia University.


The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) of Australia. Sustainability. [Web site featuring research sponsored by CSIRO. The categorization highlights the concerns of sustainability.]


Connellan, P (2022). The Top Ten Apps To Help You Live More Sustainably. Women Love Tech, Feb. 4.


Creative City Network of Canada (2007). Exploring the Cultural Dimensions of Sustainability. Creative City News, Special Edition 4.


Curren, R (2011). Toward An Ethic of Sustainability. NPR, Nov. 11.


Di Fabio, A (2017). The Psychology of Sustainability and Sustainable Development for Well-Being in Organizations. Frontiers in Psychology, 8.


Dillard, J, Dujon, V and King, M (2010). Defining Social Sustainability, in Heinberg R and Lerch, D (eds.) The Post Carbon Reader: Managing the 21st Century’s Sustainability Crises. Watershed Media. [Scroll down to page 9.]


Dolter, B and Victor, P (2017). From Growth to Sustainability, in Victor, P and Dolter, B (eds.) Handbook on Growth and Sustainability. Edward Elger Publishing.


Domazet, M and Jerolimov, D (2014). Sustainability Perspectives from the European Semi-periphery. Institute for Social Research in Zagreb, Heinrich Böll Stifung Hrvatska. [12 interesting chapters.]


Doughnut Economics Action Lab (2021). About Doughnut Economics.


Doughnut Economics Action Lab (2021). Dimensions of the Doughnut.


Dovers, S and Handmer, J (1993). Contradictions in Sustainability. Environmental Conservation, 20(3): 217-221.


Dowd, M (2019). Sustainability 101 - Ecology as Theology. You Tube, Nov. 19.


Dresner, S (2002).  Principles of Sustainability. Earthscan, London.


Du Pisani, J (2006). Sustainable Development – Historical Roots of the Concept. Environmental Sciences, 3(2).


Durack, R (2001). Village Vices: The Contradiction of New Urbanism and Sustainability. Places Journal, 14(2).  [Provocative call for open-ended, flexible planning.]


Duxbury, N and Gillette, E (2007). Culture as a Key Dimension of Sustainability: Exploring Concepts, Themes, and Models. Working Paper No. 1, Creative City Network of Canada - Centre of Expertise on Culture and Communities.


Elkins, P and Zenghelis, D (2021). The Costs and Benefits of Environmental Sustainability. Sustainability Science, 16.


Evans, M (2020). What Is Environmental Sustainability? The Balance Small Business, July 8.


Explainity Channel (2012). Sustainability Explained. [A 6 minute intro level video.]


Faber, N, Jorna, R and Van Engelen, J (2005). The Sustainability of "Sustainability" — A Study Into the Conceptual Foundations of the Notion of "Sustainability. Journal of Environmental Assessment Policy and Management, 7(1).


Fahrmeir, A (2020). Democracies, Change, Sustainability, and Transformation: Historical Perspectives. Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy, 16(1).


Fang, K (2021). Moving Away from Sustainability. Nature Sustainability, 5.


Fanning, A, O’Neill, D, Hickel, J and Roux, N (2021). The Social Shortfall and Ecological Overshoot of Nations. Nature Sustainability, 5.


Feil, A and Schreiber, D (201). Sustainability and Sustainable Development: Unraveling Overlays and Scope of their Meanings. Cadernos EBAPE.BR, 14(3).


Feola, G (2020). Capitalism in Sustainability Transitions Research: Time for a Critical Turn? Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, 35.


Feola, G and Jaworska, S (2019). One Transition, Many Transitions? A Corpus-based Study of Societal Sustainability Transition Discourses in Four Civil Society’s Proposals. Sustainability Science, 14.


Ferreira, F (2017). Critical Sustainability Studies: A Holistic and Visionary Conception of Socio-ecological Conscientization. The Journal of Sustainability Education, March.


Fien, J and Tilbury, D (2002). The Global Challenge of Sustainability, in Tilbury, D, Stevenson, R, Fine, J and Schreuder, D (eds.) Education and Sustainability: Responding to the Global Challenge. IUCN Commission on Education and Communication.


Filho, W (2000). Dealing with Misconceptions on the Concept of Sustainability. International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, 1(1).


Filho, W, Wolf, F, Salvia, A, Beynaghi, A, Shulla, K, Kovaleva, M and Vasconcelos, C (2020). Heading Towards an Unsustainable World: Some of the Implications of Not Achieving the SDGs. Discover Sustainability, 1(2).


Fiskel, J, Eason, T and Frederickson, H (2012). A Framework for Sustainability Indicators at EPA. National Risk Management Research Laboratory, Office of Research and Development, US EPA. EPA/600/R/12/687.


Flint, RW (2012). Symbolism of Sustainability: Means of Operationalizing the Concept. Synesis, Vol. 1(1): T25-37.


Folke, C, Hahn, T, Rockström, J, Osterblom, H and Walker, B (2009). Resilience and Sustainable Development 2.0. Stockholm Resilience Centre.


Foran, B (2012). Physical Realities and the Sustainability Transition, in Raupach, M, McMichael, A, Finnigan, J, Manderson, L and Walker, B (eds) Negotiating our Future: Living Scenarios for Australia to 2050, Vol. 2. Australian Academy of Science.


Frankel, B (2018). Fictions of Sustainability: The Politics of Growth and Post-Capitalist Futures. Greenmeadows, Melbourne.


Fregosi, S (2021).  Introduction to No Sustainability Without Justice. AASHE.


Frey, U (2017). A Synthesis of Key Factors for Sustainability in Social–ecological Systems. Sustainability Science, 12.


Gallopin, G (2003). A Systems Approach to Sustainability and Sustainable Development. United Nations Sustainable Development and Human Settlements Division, Publicatioon LC/L.1864-P.


Garcia, E (2019). Thoughts on Sustainability Part 2., Oct. 30.


Gaziulusoy, I and Oztekin, E (2019). Design for Sustainability Transitions: Origins, Attitudes and Future Directions. Sustainability, 11.


Gorg, C, Brand, U, Haberl, H, Hummel, D, Jahn, T and Liehr, S (2017). Challenges for Social-Ecological Transformations: Contributions from Social and Political Ecology. Sustainability, 9(7).


Groves, C (2019). Sustainability and the Future: Reflections on the Ethical and Political Significance of Sustainability. Sustainability Science, 14.


Gudynas, E (2011). Buen Vivir: Today's Tomorrow. Development, 54. Or


Hammond, M (2020). Sustainability as a Cultural Transformation: The Role of Deliberative Democracy. Environmental Politics, 29(1).   


Hancock, T (2019). Beyond Science and Technology: Creating Planetary Health Needs Not Just ‘Head Stuff’, but Social Engagement and ‘Heart, Gut and Spirit’ Stuff. Challenges, 10(1).


Harris, J (2000). Basic Principles of Sustainable Development. G-DAE Working Paper No. 00-04, Global Development and Environment Institute, Tufts University.


Hausknost, D (2019). The Environmental State and the Glass Ceiling of Transformation. Environmental Politics, 29(1). [A cogent and devastating critique of the feasibility of a sustainability transition.]


Heinberg, R (2010). What is Sustainability? in Heinberg R and Lerch, D (eds.) The Post Carbon Reader: Managing the 21st Century’s Sustainability Crises. Watershed Media.


Henfry, T and Giangrande, N (2014). Resilience and Community Action in the Transition Movement, in Henfry, T, Maschkowski, G and Penha-Lopes, G, eds., Resilience, Community Action and Societal Transformation. Transition Research Network. ECOLISE Series, Permanent Publications.


Henfry, T and Kenrick, J (2014). Climate, Commons and Hope: The Transition Movement in Global Perspective, in Henfry, T, Maschkowski, G and Penha-Lopes, G, eds., Resilience, Community Action and Societal Transformation. Transition Research Network. ECOLISE Series, Permanent Publications.


Holmgren, D (2011). Relevance of Mainstream Sustainability to Energy Descent, in Future Scenarios: How Communities Can Adapt to Peak Oil and Climate Change.  Future


Horcea-Milcu, A, Abson, D, Apetrei, C, Duse, I, Freeth, R, Riechers, M, Lam, D, Dorninger, C and Lang, D (2019). Values in Transformational Sustainability Science: Four Perspectives for Change. Sustainability Science, 14.


Howarth, R (2007). Towards an Operational Sustainability Criterion. Ecological Economics, 63(4): 656-663.


HowGood (2022). The World’s Largest Sustainability Database.


Hummel, B (2016). Social Sustainability: The Shorter Leg. The Nexus Point Blog.


Hussaini, I, Muhammad, S, Chiroma, A, Onunze, C and Ibrahim, S (2014). Sustainable Development and the Ethical Issue of Human Morality; an Overview. Medinanet, Dec. 11. [Includes a list or required elements of the practice of ethicality.]


Isgren, E, Jerneck, A and O'Byrne, D (2017). Pluralism in Search of Sustainability: Ethics, Knowledge and Methodology in Sustainability Science. Challenges in Sustainability, 5(1).


Jeanrenaud, S (ed.) (2008). The Future of Sustainability: Have Your Say! Summary of the IUCN E-Discussion Forum 2006. International Union for Conservation of Nature.


Jeffery, M (2008). Environmental Ethics and Sustainable Development: Ethical and Human Rights Issues in Implementing Indigenous Rights. Macquarie Journal of International and Comparative Environmental Law, 2(1).


Jennings, B (2013). Ethical Aspects of Sustainability. Minding Nature, 3(1). Centre for Humans and Nature. [Short overview]


Johnson, J, Zanotti, L, Ma, Z, Yu, D, Johnson, D, Kirkham, A and Carothers, C (2018). Interplays of Sustainability, Resilience, Adaptation and Transformation, in Leal Filho, W, Marans, R and Callewaert, J. (eds), Handbook of Sustainability and Social Science Research. World Sustainability Series. Springer International Publishing.


Joshi, S and Pargman, T (2015). In Search of Fairness: Critical Design Alternatives for Sustainability. Aarhus Series on Human Centered Computing, 1(1).


Karlsson, R (2012). Individual Guilt or Collective Progressive Action? Challenging the Strategic Potential of Environmental Citizenship Theory. Environmental Values, 21(4).


Kates, RW, Parris, TM and Leiserowitz, A (2005). What is Sustainable Development? Goals, Indicators, Values, and Practices. Environment: Science and Policy for Sustainable Development, 47(3): 8-21.


Khoo, S (2011). Sustainable Development of What? Contesting Global Development Concepts and Measures, in Fahy, F & Rau, H (Eds.) Methods of Sustainability Research in the Social Sciences. SAGE Publications. Pdf


Kibert, C Thiele, L, Peterson, A and Monroe, M (2010). The Ethics of Sustainability. Island Press. [online textbook]


Kirchain, R and Ulm, F (2021). Climate Resilience is the New Sustainability. The Hill, May 30.


Kohler, J et al., (2019). An Agenda for Sustainability Transitions Research: State of the Art and Future Directions. Transitions, 31.


Komiyama, H and Takeuchi, K (2006). Sustainability Science: Building a New Discipline. Sustainability Science, 1(1): 1-6.


Kopnina, H (2015). The Victims of Unsustainability: A Challenge to Sustainable Development Goals. International Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology, 23(2).


Kopnina, H (2020). Education for the Future? Critical Evaluation of Education for Sustainable Development Goals. The Journal of Education, 51(4).


Kori, E and Gondo, T (2012). Environmental Sustainability: Reality, Fantasy or Fallacy? 2nd International Conference on Environment and BioScience, vol. 44.


Kuhlman, T and Farrington, J (2010). What Is Sustainability? Sustainability, 2(11): 3436-3448.


LaFleur, M (2017). The Global Context for the 2030 Agenda. United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Policy Brief #55. [Highlights the dependence on economic growth for the success of the UN’s sustainable development initiatives.]


Lamb, G (2020). What is ‘Sustainable’ Development?: Growth Versus Environment on a Finite Planet. Medium, Jul. 27. [A solid, easily digestible, historical overview of the evolution and contestability of the concept of sustainable development.]


Liu, J, Bawa, K, Seager, T, Mao, G, Ding, D, Lee, J and Swim, J (2019). On Knowledge Generation and Use for Sustainability. Nature Sustainability, 2.  [On the necessity of interdisciplinarity]


Lorek, S (2000). Sustainable Consumption, in Brauch, H, Spring, U, Grin, J and Scheffran, J (eds.) Handbook on Sustainability Transition and Sustainable Peace. Hexagon Series on Human and Environmental Security and Peace, vol 10. Springer. Pdf


Lovins, H (2004). Natural Capitalism: Path to Sustainability? Natural Resources and the Environment, 19(2).


Luederitz, C, Abson, D, Audet, R and Lang, D (2017). Many Pathways Toward Sustainability: Not Conflict but Co-learning Between Transition Narratives. Sustainability Science, 12(3).


Makower, J (2021). Can Sustainability Save Capitalism? Greenbiz, March 30.


Manning, C (2009). Psychology of Sustainable Behavior. Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.


Marchese, D, Reynolds, E, Bates, M, Morgan, H, Spierre Clark, S and Linkov, I (2018). Resilience and Sustainability: Similarities and Differences in Environmental Management Applications. Science of the Total Environment, 613-614.


Mason, M (N.D.). What Is Sustainability and Why Is It Important? Environmental


Massoudi, M and Vaidya, A (2018). Simplicity and Sustainability: Pointers from Ethics and Science. Sustainability, 19(4).


Mavrommati, G, Rogers, S, Howarth, R and Borusk, M (2020). Representing Future Generations in the Deliberative Valuation of Ecosystem Services. Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene, 8.


Mears, N (2003).  A Field Guide to Sustainability.  Washington State Department of Ecology.


Medovoi, L (2010). Sustainability as Disavowal.  Periscope Blog, in Social Text.


Mensah, J and Casadevall, S (2019). Sustainable Development: Meaning, History, Principles, Pillars, and Implications for Human Action: Literature Review. Cogent Social Sciences, 5(1).


Mischen, P et al., (2019). A Foundation for Measuring Community Sustainability. Sustainability, 11(1903).


Morandin-Ahuerma, I, Contreras-Hernandez, A, Ayala-Ortiz, D, and Perez-Maqueo, O (2019). Socio-Ecosystemic Sustainability. Sustainability, 11(12).


Morelli, J (2011). Environmental Sustainability: A Definition for Environmental Professionals. Journal of Environmental Sustainability, 1(1).


Muraca, B and Doring, R (2018). From (Strong) Sustainability to Degrowth: A Philosophical and Historical Reconstruction, in Caradonna, J (ed.) Routledge Handbook of the History of Sustainability. Routledge.


Murphy, K (2012). The Social Pillar of Sustainable Development: A Literature Review and Framework for Policy Analysis. Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy, 8:1. [Includes a categorized bibliography of “Literature that provides the building blocks of a social pillar of sustainable development.”]


Newman, L (2005). Uncertainty, Innovation and Dynamic Sustainable Development. Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy, 1(2): 25-31.


Nicolosi, E, Medina, R and Feola, G (2018). Grassroots Innovations for Sustainability in the United States: A Spatial Analysis. Applied Geography, 91.  [Mapping where it is happening.]


Niesenbaum, R (2020). Sustainable Solutions. Oxford University Press, NY.


O’Brien, K, Pelling, M, Patwardhan, A, Hallegatte, S, Maskrey, A, Oki, T, Oswald-Spring, U, Wilbanks,T and Yanda, P (2012). Toward a Sustainable and Resilient Future, in Field, C, Barros, V, Stocker, T, Qin, D, Dokken, D, Ebi, K, Mastrandrea, M, Mach, H, Plattner, G, Allen, S, Tignor, M and Midgley, P (eds.) Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation. A Special Report of Working Groups I and II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.


One Percent for the Planet (2019). 10 Most Viable Global Climate Solutions. Aug. 21.


O’Neill, D et al., (2020a). About. University of Leeds.  Web site associated with: O’Neill, D.W., Fanning, A.L., Lamb, W.F., and Steinberger, J.K. (2018). A Good Life for All Within Planetary Boundaries. Nature Sustainability, 1.


O’Neill, D et al., (2020b). Country Comparisons. University of Leeds.  Web site associated with: O’Neill, D.W., Fanning, A.L., Lamb, W.F., and Steinberger, J.K. (2018). A Good Life for All Within Planetary Boundaries. Nature Sustainability, 1. [Select a country to view its environmental sustainability and social performance relative to the “safe and just space” framework and see how it compares with other countries.]


O’Neill, D et al., (2020c). Explore Scenarios. University of Leeds. Web site associated with: O’Neill, D.W., Fanning, A.L., Lamb, W.F., and Steinberger, J.K. (2018). A Good Life for All Within Planetary Boundaries. Nature Sustainability, 1. [Use the sliders below each of the social indicators to raise or lower the thresholds we chose for a “good life”, and explore what your choices would mean for sustainability if they were extended to all people.]


O’Neill, D et al., (2020d). The Wellbeing–Consumption Paradox. University of Leeds.  Web site associated with: O’Neill, D.W., Fanning, A.L., Lamb, W.F., and Steinberger, J.K. (2018). A Good Life for All Within Planetary Boundaries. Nature Sustainability, 1. [Interactive graphing of metrics of social indicators vs carbon footprint for all countries.]


O’Neill, D et al., (2020e). World Map. University of Leeds.  Web site associated with: O’Neill, D.W., Fanning, A.L., Lamb, W.F., and Steinberger, J.K. (2018). A Good Life for All Within Planetary Boundaries. Nature Sustainability, 1. [Use this interactive world map to see the number of biophysical boundaries that different countries transgress (the BIOPHYSICAL tab) in comparison to the number of social thresholds that they achieve (the SOCIAL tab).]


Orr, D (2003). Four Challenges of Sustainability. School of Natural Resources, University of Vermont. 5p.


Ott, K, Muraca, B and Baatz, C (2011). Strong Sustainability as a Frame for Sustainability Communication, in Godemann, J and Michelsen, G (eds.), Sustainability Communication: Interdisciplinary Perspectives and Theoretical Foundations. Springer Science+Business Media. 


Peterson, L (2000). Understanding Sustainable Communities, in Wheeler, K and Bijur, A (eds.), Education for a Sustainable Future: A Paradigm of Hope for the 21st Century. Kluwer Academic.


Pezzey, J and Toman, M (2002a). The Economics of Sustainability: A Review of Journal Articles. Resources for the Future, Discussion Paper 02-03.  [25 page paper.]


Pezzey, J and Toman, M (2002b). Making Sense of “Sustainability. Resources for the Future, Issue Brief 02-25. [Includes an Economic Analysis of Sustainability.]


Pezzey, J and Toman, M (2005). Sustainability and its Economic Interpretations, in Simpson, R, Toman, M and Ayres, R (eds.), Scarcity and Growth: Natural Resources and the Environment in the New Millennium. RFF Press.


Pinker, A (2020). Just Transitions: A Comparative Perspective. The James Hutton Institute & SEFARI Gateway.


Pinter, L, Almassy, and Hatakeyama, S (2014). Sustainable Development Goals and Indicators for a Small Planet. Part II: Measuring Sustainability. Asia-Europe Foundation.


Prugh, T and Assadourian, E (2003). What is Sustainability, Anyway? World Watch Magazine, 16(5). 13p.


Remington-Doucette, Sonya (2017). Sustainable World: Approaches to Analyzing and Resolving Wicked Problems. Kendall Hunt Publishing, 2nd edition.


Robertson, M (2014). Sustainability Principles and Practice. Taylor & Francis Group.


Robin, V, Raworth, K and Krznaric, R (2021). What Could Possibly Go Right? Episode 54 Kate Raworth and Roman Krznaric. Resilience, Sept. 21.


Robins, N (2020). Achieving a Just Transition. Resurgence & Ecologist, Jan/Feb.


Robinson, J and Cole, R (2014). Theoretical Underpinnings of Regenerative Sustainability. Building Research & Information, 43(2).


Rose, J and Cachelin, A (2018). Critical Sustainability: Incorporating Critical Theories into Contested Sustainabilities. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, 8.


Rosen, M (2018). Issues, Concepts and Applications for Sustainability. Glocalism: Journal of Culture, Politics and Innovation, 3.


Sala, S, Ciuffo, B and Nijkamp, P (2015). A Systemic Framework for Sustainability Assessment. Ecological Economics, 119: 314-325.


Salazar, J (2015). Buen Vivir: South America’s Rethinking of the Future We Want. The Conversation, July 23.


Sangha, K (2018). What Kind of Development We Want to Afford Sustainable Living? Journal of Environmental Science and Engineering, A 7.


Santamarina, B, Vaccaro, I and Beltran, O (2015). The Sterilization of Eco-criticism: From Sustainable Development to Sustainability to Green Capitalism. Anduli: Revista Andaluza de Ciencias Sociales, 14.


Saylor Academy (2020). The Human Dimensions of Sustainability: History, Culture, Ethics, in ENVS203: Environmental Ethics, Justice, and World Views. [Unit in an online course]


Schantz, M et al., (2021). ULI Sustainability Outlook 2021. Urban Land Institute. [What sustainability topics and issues are on the rise, why do they matter, and what should the industry do about it?]


Schepelmann, P, Goossens, Y, Makipaa, (Ed.) (2009). Towards Sustainable Development: Alternatives to GDP for Measuring Progress, Wuppertal Spezial, Wuppertal Institut für Klima, Umwelt und Energie, No. 42.


Schley, S and Laur, D (n.d.). The Sustainability Challenge: Ecological and Economic Development. The Systems


Schreiber, J and Siege, H (eds.) (2016). Curriculum Framework: Education for Sustainable Development. KMK (Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs) and BMZ (German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development).


Sconfienza, U (2019). The Post-sustainability Trilemma. Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning, 21(6).


Scoones, I (2016). The Politics of Sustainability and Development. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 41.


Seghezzo, L (2009). The Five Dimensions of Sustainability. Journal of Environmental Politics, 18(4).


Sherman, D (2008). Sustainability: What’s the Big Idea? Sustainability, 1(3).


Sirolli, E (2012). Truly Sustainable Economic Development. TEDxEQChCh. [A stirring critique of international aid efforts]


Smythe, K (2014). An Historian’s Critique of Sustainability. Culture Unbound: Journal of Current Cultural Research, 6(5).


Sneddon, C, Howarth, R and Norgaard, R (2006). Sustainable Development in a Post-Brundtland World.  Ecological Economics, 57: 253-268.


Social Europe (2020). Themes: Just Transition. [A collection of articles defining what a Just Transition to a sustainable future must look like.]


SolAbility (2020a). Sustainable Democratic Competitive: 12 Policies for More Sustainable AND More Prosperous Societies. [Very business oriented.]


SolAbility (2020b). The Sustainable Competitiveness Report, 9th edition. [Very business oriented.]


Spangenberg, J (2011). Sustainability Science: A Review, an Analysis and Some Empirical Lessons. Environmental Conservation, 38(3).


Sturup, S and Low, N (2019). Sustainable Development and Mega Infrastructure: An Overview of the Issues. Journal of Mega Infrastructure & Sustainable Development, 1(1).


Summers, J and Smith, L (2014). The Role of Social and Intergenerational Equity in Making Changes in Human Well-Being Sustainable. Ambio, 43(6).


Sustainability Illustrated (2019).  AMC Creative Inc.


Suzuki, D and Cullis, T (1992). The Declaration of Interdependence. David Suzuki Foundation.


Take the Jump (2022).


Tallis, H (2019). A More Sustainable Path to 2050. The Nature Conservancy, Aug. 30.


Taylor, M (2022). Six Key Lifestyle Changes Can Help Avert the Climate Crisis, Study Finds. The Guardian, March 7.


Thompson, P (1997).  Sustainability as a NormSociety for Philosophy and Technology, 2(2): 75-94. [With a focus on the sustainability of livestock farming.]


Thompson, P (2012). Sustainability: Ethical Foundations. Nature Education Knowledge, 3(10).


Tittle, C (2011). ‘Weak’ Versus ‘Strong’ Sustainability, in An Oak Tree in the Garden blog site.


Trainer, T (2012). But Can’t Technology Advance Solve the Problems? Simplicity Institute, Report 12g.


Tulloch, L and Neilson, D (2014). The Neoliberalisation of Sustainability. Citizenship, Social and Economics Education, 13(1).


Turner, R (2011a). Big Ideas, Learning Outcomes, Skills, and References Relevant to a Sustainability Course or Curriculum. University of Washington Bothell.


Turner, R (2011b). Graphical Models of Sustainability and Sustainable Development, in Big Ideas, Learning Outcomes, Skills, and References Relevant to a Sustainability Course or Curriculum.  University of Washington Bothell.


Turner, R (2017). Evaluate Definitions of Sustainability and Sustainable Development, in Turner, R, Sinton, C, Davi, N and Plake, T, Water, Agriculture and Sustainability Teaching Module, InTeGrate.


UCLA Sustainability Committee (n.d.). What is Sustainability? University of California Los Angeles.


United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (2021). Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform.


United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (2021). The 17 Goals.


United Nations Development Programme (2011). Why Sustainability and Equity?, in Klugman, J (ed.), Human Development Report 2011 – Sustainability and Equity: A Better Future for All.


University of Washington Sustainability Office (2021). Definition of Sustainability.


Van der Hel, S (2018). Science for Change: A Survey on the Normative and Political Dimensions of Global Sustainability Research. Global Environmental Change, 52.


Varner, G (2010). A Harean Perspective on Humane Sustainability. Ethics & the Environment, 15(2): 31-49.


Velicu, I and Barca, S (2020). The Just Transition and its Work of Inequality. Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy, 16(1).


Virtanen, P, Siragusa, L and Guttorm, H (2020). Introduction: Toward More Inclusive Definitions of Sustainability. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 43.


Waas, T, Huge, J, Vebruggen, A and Wright, T (2011). Sustainable Development: A Bird's Eye View. Sustainability, 3(10).


Wackernagel, M, Hanscom, L and Lin, D (2017). Making the Sustainable Development Goals Consistent with Sustainability. Frontiers in Energy Research, 5(18).


Warner, K and DeCosse, D (2009). The Ethical Dimension of Sustainability, in A Short Course in Environmental Ethics. Markkula Center for Applied Ethics.


Wilson, D (2017). Toward a Whole Earth Morality. Center for Humans and Nature, July 14. [Includes key principles for managing common-pool resources.]


Woods, D (2002). Sustainable Development: A Contested Paradigm. Foundation for Water Research.


World Business Council for Sustainable Development (2021). Dasgupta Review on the Economics of Biodiversity (2021) – Business Summary. [See the useful graphic titled Summary of Options for Change.]


World Commission on Environment and Development (1987). Report of the World Commission on Environment and Development: Our Common Future. United Nations.

Wyness, L, Jones, P and Klapper, R (2015). Sustainability: What the Entrepreneurship Educators Think. Education + Training, 57(8/9).



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