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Sustainability

Our interdisciplinary research explores how pathways to sustainability, green transformations and equitable access to resources such as land, water and food can be achieved and help us meet the environmental as well as human development-related goals of the UN Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.

Our work builds on a long tradition of critical social science engagement with environmental issues and resource politics in collaboration with partners globally. It explores how pathways to sustainability are shaped by political-economic and social processes, and understands how they are driven by technology, markets, states and citizens.  Our research sheds new light on how we can achieve green transformations that move us from fossil fuel to renewable energy, from throw-away to circular economies. It addresses the politics of sustainability, and understands how transformations occur at local levels as well as global, in both rural and urban settings, and be led by citizens as well as national governments. In doing so, it shines a light on how sustainable resource use, consumption and production is shaped by issues such as gender, livelihoods and politics.

People

Image of Lyla Mehta
Lyla Mehta

Professorial Fellow

Image of Ian Scoones
Ian Scoones

Professorial Fellow

Image of Amber Huff
Amber Huff

Research Fellow

Image of Jeremy Allouche
Jeremy Allouche

Research Fellow

Image of Lars Otto Naess
Lars Otto Naess

Research Fellow

Image of Wei Shen
Wei Shen

Research Fellow

Image of Shilpi Srivastava
Shilpi Srivastava

Research Fellow

Programmes and centres

Projects

Project

System Change Hive

The System Change HIVE will explore and communicate visions of better lives to inform public thinking and work towards fairer systems that safeguard life-support systems and prioritise well-being and justice.

Recent work

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Working Paper

Programme Aid as an Appropriate Policy Response to Drought

IDS working papers;34

This paper puts forward the argument for programme aid as a policy response to drought. It suggests its importance lies in the initial impact of the aid transfer, and in the additional opportunities thereby made available to carry out strategic policy.

1 January 1996

Working Paper

Integrating Gender into Environmental Research and Policy

IDS working papers;27

This study looks at the reasons why this has happened, blaming it on a flawed conceptualisation of gender relations that ignores the differing interests of men and women. Recommendations on how women's interests can be better safeguarded are proposed.

1 January 1996

Book

Second Nature

West Africa's transition zone is one of the world's most ecologically fragile areas and is widely assumed to be experiencing a deforestation crisis. For a century experts have held villagers responsible.

1 January 1996

Book

Second Nature (French – SECAM format)

West Africa's transition zone is one of the world's most ecologically fragile areas and is widely assumed to be experiencing a deforestation crisis. For a century experts have held villagers responsible. But recent research in Guinea shows the exact opposite. Instead of disappearing, forest...

1 January 1996

Book

Living with Uncertainty

The last few years have seen a major rethinking of some of the hallowed assumptions of range ecology and range management practice. This book examines the management of policy implications of this new ecological thinking for pastoral development in dryland areas. With examples drawn from all...

16 August 1995