Transforming scholarship to co-create sustainable futures

Ilan Chabay, Ortwin Renn, Sander van der Leeuw, Solène Droy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Non-technical summary. All of humanity is facing the increasingly urgent challenge of finding pathways to the emergence of new, more sustainable patterns of living that promotes the coevolution of natural and cultural systems. We address this challenge by proposing changes in scientific and scholarly research communities and transformations in roles, resources, actors, and institutions of scholarship (i.e., natural and social sciences, humanities, and arts), which can contribute substantially and effectively to co-designing solutions for sustainable, just, and equitable human societies. Technical summary. The critical challenge facing humanity is the increasingly urgent need to find and implement pathways that lead humankind into a new stage of dynamic equilibrium that promotes the co-evolution of natural and cultural systems. We address this challenge for scientific and scholarly research communities and the transformations in roles, resources, actors, and institutions of scholarship (encompassing natural and social sciences, humanities, and arts), which can contribute substantially and effectively to co-designing solutions for coping with unsustainable practices and systemic risks. Our perspective builds upon a series of four workshops to identify and address global sustainability challenges at a regional scale. It is anchored in the view that nature and society are inextricably interwoven, that planetary boundaries are fundamentally societal, rather than solely environmental issues, that viable solutions to the global challenges mentioned above can be developed and most effectively implemented at a regional to local scale in conjunction with substantive changes in the education systems at all levels, and that these considerations require a complex adaptive systems approach to seeking and implementing solutions. We call for rethinking, finding creative approaches, and acting to make scholarship more capable of effectively creating just and equitable sustainable futures in diverse cultures and contexts. Social media summary. Transforming scholarship and education to enable co-design of societal transformations to sustainable futures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere19
JournalGlobal Sustainability
Volume4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Keywords

  • co-design of research
  • complex adaptive systems
  • narratives of identity and vision
  • systemic risks
  • transformation to sustainable futures
  • transforming learning and educational institutions
  • transforming scholarship

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Global and Planetary Change

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