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/cis2022.10010034 | Volume 10 (2022) | Issue 1
Gareth Gransaull 1 , Evelyn Anita Austin 2 , Guy Brodsky 3 , Shadiya Aidid 4 and Truzaar Dordi 3, 4, 5, *
1 Richard Ivey School of Business, The University of Western Ontario, London, Canada
2 Department of Mathematics, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada
3 School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada
4 Department of Health Sciences, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, Canada
5 School of Environment, Enterprise and Development, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 13 September 2022
Abstract: Fossil fuel divestment has quickly become the largest divestment campaign in history, drawing attention to the large discrepancy between national climate commitments and the continued support of the fossil fuel industry. Yet, fossil fuel production and emissions continue to escalate rapidly. Our question is: what's next for the divestment movement? We propose a conceptual framework that identifies two waves of divestment leadership in which public pressure campaigns move towards targeting the extractive economic structures and predatory behaviors that permit fossil fuel extraction, and unsustainable resource extraction more generally, to continue without limit. Building on the three waves model of divestment, we postulate that a fourth wave of fossil fuel divestment organizing has already begun, one that focuses on banks, insurers, and other financiers of fossil fuel projects. Further into the future, we envision a fifth wave of divestment campaigns, whereby divestment is used in climate and environmental activists' arsenal to target firms that engage in environmentally damaging and unjust behaviors such as destructive mining activities, overconsumption, predatory debt or arbitration processes, or Indigenous rights violations. While divestment is not a panacea and does not displace the work of existing post-extractive or climate justice campaigns, we argue that divestment is a powerful tool that can be used to complement and amplify the work of environmental justice activists in other contexts beyond fossil fuels. This paper offers actionable suggestions for current and future activists and frames divestment as a tactic that will proliferate within other environmental movements in the transition towards a post-growth economy.

doi: 10.12924/cis2022.10020019 | Volume 10 (2022) | Issue 2
Publication Date: 31 August 2022
Abstract:

In this paper, I put forward an argument that sustainability science can make objectively grounded normative claims about what courses of action society should pursue in order to achieve sustainability. From a survey of the philosophy of science, social theory and sustainability science literature, I put forward an approach to justifying these normative arguments. This approach builds on the insight that social theories are value-laden and that dominant and pervasive social practices find their justification in some social theory. The approach: (i) focuses on the analysis of concrete cases; (ii) paying attention to the social practices that produce environmental problems and the theories that support those practices; (iii) examines alternative theories, and (iv) justifies a normative position by identifying the most comprehensive theoretical understanding of the particular case. Although the approach focuses on the analysis of particular cases it does not rely on value relativism. Furthermore, while the focus is on the role of science in producing normative arguments about society’s trajectory, it maintains space for the inclusion of the values of the public in environmental decision-making. However, while this approach aims to provide a rational basis to normative positions, it does not presume that this will lead to social consensus on these issues.

 


doi: 10.12924/cis2022.10020001 | Volume 10 (2022) | Issue 2
Louis Maximilian Ronalter 1, * , Camila Fabrício Poltronieri 2 , Mateus Cecilio Gerolamo 3 and Merce Bernardo 1
1 Department of Business, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
2 Production Engineering, Faculty of Science and Technology, Federal University of Goiás, Goiânia, Brazil
3 Department of Production Engineering, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil
* Corresponding author
Publication Date: 23 June 2022
Abstract: Companies worldwide strive to become more sustainable, and, in this context, the circular economy (CE) gains importance as alternative system as opposed to the linear economy. Since executive mangers around the world work with management systems (MSs) to guide and improve organizational operations, this work aims to explore how integrated MSs (IMS) as business tools can contribute to the adoption of CE principles at the corporate level. To achieve this objective, a systematic literature review is performed, which results in a synthesis sample of 18 academic papers. The findings reveal how MSs contribute to CE adoption and, therefore, demonstrate that managers can use IMS to foster CE implementation. In addition, the findings highlight the importance of institutional intervention in the transition from a linear towards a circular designed economy. The paper contributes to academia by linking the concepts of IMS and CE, synthesizing the current academic knowledge at hand, and proposing a comprehensive research agenda that sets the path for future academic investigations. In a practical perspective, the paper contributes also to managers since it emphasizes how IMS can be used to incorporate circular business thinking into operations management.

doi: 10.12924/cis2022.10010023 | Volume 10 (2022) | Issue 1
Publication Date: 14 June 2022
Abstract: Investing in different futures is an existential challenge that much research within and adjacent to Ecological Economics engages with, yet organizations that recognize this social ecological imperative have few options for funding and implementing radical transformations to the needs and well-being provisioning systems that currently exist. Ecological macroeconomic ideas and EE principles of long term well being and justice on a livable planet will be explored in the context of the housing crisis in Canada, and a rural Ontario community organization attempting to find transformative solutions to the lived, local experience of this crisis. Provisioning systems for housing, when tied to real estate markets, debt money creation, land enclosures, and financialized supply chains, contribute to capital accumulation cycles; it is hardly possible to meet our housing needs, in aggregate, without also perpetuating the form of this provisioning system. The idea presented here, that of Capital Sequestration, proposes to remove capital from markets and `invests' this capital in land trusts as an intentional transformation of financial capital into social and ecological values. Through land and housing trusts as well as non-market funding pathways, Capital Sequestration is a method of investing in the transformation of provisioning systems through the sustained and collective boundary management of financial markets and incommensurable values. This practice offers significant promise as it applies ecological macroeconomic theory work, is grounded in the normative goals of and emerges from empirical research of EE, and meets a pressing need within society for imagining alternative economies.

doi: 10.12924/cis2022.10010003 | Volume 10 (2022) | Issue 1
Mojgan Chapariha
Lisbon School of Economics and Management (ISEG), University of Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal
Publication Date: 6 May 2022
Abstract:

This paper investigates on the implementation Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Iran. It generates a systems dynamics model for exploring possibilities for achieving four SDGs: SDG-1 (eradicating poverty), SDG-8 (economic growth and decent work), SDG-12 (sustainable production and consumption), and SDG-13 (climate action) in Iran. The model is used to generate four possible stories about the implementation of measures to achieve these SDGs in the future of the Iranian economy from 2020 to 2050: 1) the Scenario of Business as Usual continues current trends and projects them into the future, 2) the Scenario of Inclusive Growth is designed to simulate more income equality and faster economic growth, 3) the Scenario of a Steady State introduces measures to improve social, and environmental aspects while having zero economic growth, and 4) the Scenario of Well-being for People and Planet is designed to improve socio-economic and environmental aspects of the Iranian economy to achieve the four SDGs in Iran. The performance of the Iranian economy for progressing towards the SDGs is monitored through four SDG indexes which are measured based on the arithmetic mean of selected indicators for each SDG, and a Combined Index of SDGs which is measured based on the arithmetic mean of the four SDGs indexes. The results of the simulations of the SDGs model of Iran shows that the transformational scenarios (Steady State, and Well-being for People and Planet) provide better pathways in comparison to conventional scenarios (Business as Usual and Inclusive Growth) for achieving the SDGs. Moreover, this study find that transformational policy changes and extraordinary efforts are required for progress in achieving SDGs in Iran.


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ISSN: 2297-6477
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