A Sustainable Development Systems Perspective on Disaster Risk Reduction Including Climate Change Adaptation

Authored by: Tom R. Burns , Nora Machado des Johansson

The Routledge Handbook of Disaster Risk Reduction Including Climate Change Adaptation

Print publication date:  April  2017
Online publication date:  September  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138924567
eBook ISBN: 9781315684260
Adobe ISBN: 9781317408659


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The literature on the concepts ‘sustainability’ and ‘sustainable development’ is vast (Burns 2016). These influential concepts emerged out of political and administrative processes, not scientific ones. Like the concept of development itself, sustainable development has been a contentious and contested concept, not only with respect to controversies between advocates of capitalism and those of socialism and social democracy, but between industrialised and developed countries, or between modernisation advocates and their diverse opponents. In other words, environmental issues have been added to earlier contentious issues. These have been and continue to be divisive, for instance between those who, on the one hand, advocate limiting or blocking much socio-economic development in order to protect or reclaim the environment and those who, on the other hand, stress the need of socio-economic development to alleviate poverty and inequality, if necessary at the expense of the state of the environment.

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