ISSN: 2297-6477 doi: 10.12924/librello.CiS

Challenges in Sustainability (CiS; ISSN 2297-6477) is an international, open access, academic, interdisciplinary journal dedicated to the publication of high-quality research articles and review papers on all aspects of global environmental and transformational change toward sustainability. Research articles, reviews, communications or short notes and films are welcomed. Manuscripts must be prepared in English; they will undergo a rigorous peer review process, and they will appear online immediately after final acceptance. We especially encourage submissions from early stage researchers.

Objectives & Aims

The objective of the journal is to be a front-runner for original science that stimulates the development of sustainability solutions in an era of global environmental change. CiS defines its place at the interface between natural, socio-economic, and the humanistic sciences, creating a unique platform to disseminate analyses on challenges related to global environmental change, associated solutions, and trade-offs. The journal helps to further the field of sustainability science by bridging gaps between disciplines, science and societal stakeholders while not neglecting scientific rigor and excellence. The journal promotes science-based insights of societal dynamics, and is open for innovative and critical approaches that stimulate scientific and societal debates.

Examples of topics to be covered by this journal include, but are not limited to:

  • Environment and resource science
  • Governance for sustainability
  • Transition experiments and pathway studies
  • Education for sustainability
  • Future and anticipatory studies
  • Transdisciplinarity
  • Sustainable urban systems
  • Sustainable energy
  • Place-based sustainability studies
  • Resource exploitation
  • Impact assessment and integrated modeling
  • Carbon accounting and compensation
  • Remote sensing and geoinformation

Latest publications

doi: 10.12924/cis2021.09010045 | Volume 9 (2021) | Issue 1
Emmanuel Kwame Nti 1, * , Camillus Abawiera Wongnaa 2 , Nana Sampson E. Edusah 3 , Dadson Awunyo-Vitor 2 and Vasco Baffour Kyei 4
1 Department of Agricultural Economics, Agribusiness and Extension, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Private Mail Bag, University Post Office, Kumasi, Ghana & Department of Environment and Sustainability Sciences, University for Development Studies, Tamale, Ghana
2 Department of Agricultural Economics, Agribusiness and Extension, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Private Mail Bag, University Post Office, Kumasi, Ghana
3 Bureau of Integrated Rural Development, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Private Mail Bag, University Post Office, Kumasi, Ghana
4 Department of Agricultural Economics, Agribusiness and Extension, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Private Mail Bag, University Post Office, Kumasi, Ghana & Akrokerri Small Town Water System, Community Water and Sanitation Agency–Ashanti Region
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 29 October 2021
Abstract: Revenue mobilization is critical for community-managed water systems to overcome financial constraints and to achieve financial sustainability. Using data from beneficiaries of a community managed water supply system in Ghana, we employed descriptive statistics, chi-square, perception index and document review of the system’s financial reports to assess beneficiaries’ views and perception on revenue mobilization for operations and maintenance, system expansion as well as sustainability of the project. The results showed that revenue mobilization for sustainability of operations and maintenance is significantly influenced by water connection type and religion while marital status, age and income of beneficiaries determine sustainability of the project’s expansion. The findings further revealed a significant relationship between sustainability of replacement of the project’s accessories and water connection type as well as gender, marital status, age and income of beneficiaries. The average perception index of 3.2 showed that beneficiaries perceived revenue mobilization as very good for replacing the water system’s accessories. Revenue mobilization is able to support the water system’s expansion to help meet the increasing water demands. In addition, with an average perception index of 3.6, the beneficiaries’ perception was that revenue was enough to fund operations and maintenance. Furthermore, the document review of the system’s financial reports confirmed beneficiaries’ perception of sufficiency of revenue for operations and maintenance. Finally, we found weaknesses in revenue mobilization with over 40% of bills in arrears, mostly from private users. To build resilience to the financial crisis with enhanced innovations, the study recommends the institution of effective debt recovery strategies such as the provision of pre-paid metering for private users, adoption of a public standpipe pay-as-you-fetch system as well as the introduction of smart tap technology for public standpipes in community-managed water supply systems.

doi: 10.12924/cis2021.09010028 | Volume 9 (2021) | Issue 1
Bjoke Carron 1, * , Bart Muys 2 , Jos Van Orshoven 2 and Hans Leinfelder 1
1 Department of Architecture, KU Leuven, Ghent, Belgium
2 Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 14 September 2021
Abstract:

In recent decades, the concept of Ecosystem Services (ES) has generated a paradigm shift in the perspective of human society on nature and has had an important awareness-raising role concerning the importance of ecosystems. However, the concept has not been capable to stop the loss of biodiversity and nature in order to meet the societal challenges of ES provision, especially in urbanized territories. From the reviewed literature, it is obvious that implementing the ES concept within spatial design and planning processes poses several difficulties. In this context we state that a more comprehensive approach is needed of which the ES concept is part. To move to genuine landscape change and a shift in land use and land stewardship, we argue that a landscape design approach can play a significant activating role. The goal of this paper is to underpin this assumption from a theoretical and methodological point of view. The paper first gives an overview of the difficulties that the field of ES science and practice is facing when implementing the ES concept in landscape design and planning processes. Then a landscape design approach is presented as an alternative approach and a possible way forward for genuine landscape change to meet the societal demand for ES.


doi: 10.12924/cis2021.09010016 | Volume 9 (2021) | Issue 1
Esmat Heydari 1 , Mahnaz Solhi 1, * , leila Janani 2 and Mahdi Farzadkia 1
1 Department of Health Education and Health Promotion, Faculty of Public Health, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2 Department of Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 26 May 2021
Abstract:

Waste management and promotion of source separation by the public requires identification of the determinants of waste separation behavior, raising awareness, and reinforcing such behaviors. The present study aimed to determine the status of source separation behavior and identify the barriers, benefits, and factors affecting this behavior in Iran. This is a descriptive-analytic cross-sectional study conducted on 300 women selected through stratified sampling. The questionnaire applied included three sections. The validity and reliability of the self-made questionnaire were confirmed. In this study, descriptive statistics including the percentage, frequency, mean and standard deviation were used to describe the data, while chi-square and Fisher exact tests were applied to analyze the data. Logistic regression test was also used to determine the predictors of waste separation behavior. Only 17.7% of the respondents separated the wastes regularly. The age, level of education, benefits (OR = 6.746; 95% CI = 2.534–17.959), structural barriers (OR = 12.734; 95% CI = 3.516–46.119), motivation (OR = 9.613; 95% C I= 3.356–27.536), awareness (OR = 3.917; 95% CI = 3.351–11.356), and social norms (OR = 2.905; 95% CI = 1.030–8.191) were the determinants of source separation behavior. Considering the low participation rate in waste separation, efforts required to enhance such behavior need proper policy-making, training programs, and infrastructure to encourage the individuals to participate actively in waste separation. Educational interventions and campaigns are recommended to be designed to raise awareness and empower people.


doi: 10.12924/cis2021.09010001 | Volume 9 (2021) | Issue 1
Caxton Gitonga Kaua 1, * , Thuita Thenya 1 and Jane Mutune Mutheu 1
1 Wangari Maathai Institute of Peace and Environmental Studies, University of Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 24 February 2021
Abstract:

Climate variability is variation of climate elements from the longterm mean state on all spatiotemporal scales. Climate variability affects microfinance institutions directly and indirectly through physical and transition risks. However, no studies have analyzed the effects of climate variability in relation to informal microfinance institutions. The study, therefore, aimed to analyze the effects of climate variability in relation to informal microfinance institutions. It used a descriptive study design and multi-stage sampling design. Data was analyzed using thematic analysis, descriptive analysis, and Kendall’s tau-b correlation analysis. The study found a positive trend in climate variability (τb = 0.174, α>0.05). Local people are highly vulnerable to climate variability as confirmed by 98.7% of the respondents who observed that climate variability affects their livelihoods. This vulnerability stems from the effect of climate variability on access to capital assets and livelihood strategies. Vulnerability to climate variability has a significant negative effect on loan repayment performance, loan access and sustainability, and hence on informal microfinance performance (τb = - 0.109**, P<0.01). Nevertheless, climate variability increases participation in informal microfinance institutions as shown by the positive relationship with the number of people who joined informal microfinance institutions (τb = 0.239**, P<0.01) and the number formed per year (τb = 0.137, P<0.01) from 1981 to 2018. This is because informal microfinance institutions help vulnerable households in building resilience to climate variability as observed by 80.8% of the respondents.. The characteristics of informal microfinance institutions have positive or negative relationships with vulnerability to climate variability. These relationships are and could be further leveraged upon to address effects of climate variability on informal microfinance institutions. Detailed contextual analysis of informal microfinance institutions in the nexus of climate variability is thus imperative to inform actions aimed at cushioning the groups and their members against the impacts.


doi: 10.12924/cis2020.08010030 | Volume 8 (2020) | Issue 1
Oliver Gerald Schrot 1, * , Hanna Krimm 2 and Thomas Schinko 3
1 Faculty of Geo- and Atmospheric Sciences, Institute of Geography, University of Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria
2 alpS GmbH, Innsbruck, Austria
3 Risk and Resilience Program, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Laxenburg, Austria
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 19 October 2020
Abstract: Human influences on Earth's natural systems are accelerating, with anthropogenic climate and global change posing existential risks for mankind. To overcome the policy implementation gap in practice both collective and transformative actions for sustainability involving science, policy and society are urgently needed. In the realms of science, this relates to taking inter-and transdisciplinary research approaches to foster exchange and co-designing policy options between researcher, decision-makers and other societal stakeholders; however, such collaboration is often limited by time, funding and complexity constrains.
This paper recognises that particularly early career climate change and sustainability researchers are exposed to both the claim for and practical challenges of inter- and transdisciplinarity. For a first qualitative investigation of Austrian early career researchers’ preparedness for conducting participatory research with societal stakeholders, this study examines perspectives of twelve early career researchers participating in a young scientists' workshop.
Using a pre-post survey and analysing data by content, our findings indicate that workshop participants have to manage stakeholder processes directly after graduation and, due to a lack of methodological training, only use a small fraction of existing social science methods and participatory settings for stakeholder collaboration. To support other early career researchers and future students in Austria in developing strong inter-and transdisciplinary research skills, we highlight the added-value of integrating hands-on workshops with societal stakeholders, regular exchange of lessons learned and transdisciplinary lectures into university education. Offering more practice-oriented transdisciplinary learning activities during undergraduate education, like excursions and mini-projects in which students can develop and train participatory methods together with stakeholders under guidance, is believed to be a fruitful strategy in this context.

View more publications...



ISSN: 2297-6477
2012 - 2021 Librello, Switzerland.