The quality of sustainability science: a philosophical perspective.

Ott, Konrad and Ziegler, Rafael (2011) The quality of sustainability science: a philosophical perspective. Sustainability: Science, Practice, & Policy .

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Abstract

Sustainability science does not fit easily with established criteria of the quality of science. Making explicit and justifying
four features of sustainability science—normativity, inclusion of nonscientists, urgency, and cooperation of natural
and social scientists—can promote deep and comprehensive questioning. In particular, because the inclusion of nonscientists
into sustainability science has become a dogma, re-examining the epistemic, normative, and political reasons
for inclusion is important for the quality of sustainability science. These reasons include providing a range of
perspectives and helping to craft and implement policy in real-world social and ethical situations. To be included effectively,
nonscientists must be understood within this demanding context rather than employed merely to satisfy a
dogma. We situate our discussion in this article against a foundational controversy of sustainability science: the weak
versus strong sustainability debate. According to our analysis, comprehensive consideration of the features of normativity,
inclusion of nonscientists, urgency, and cooperation of natural and social scientists suggests a convincing
case for strong sustainability.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: sustainability
Research affiliation: OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence
OceanRep > The Future Ocean - Cluster of Excellence > FO-R02
Kiel University
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: Yes
Projects: Future Ocean
Date Deposited: 09 Apr 2017 20:51
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2017 03:46
URI: http://oceanrep.geomar.de/id/eprint/37178

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