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Sustainable societies

Major problems are related to how we build our societies, how we allocate our resources, how we consume and how we travel. But what does an ecologically and socially sustainable world look like? These are questions that engage many social scientists.

Top view of building with trees. Photo.

It is now well known that our way of life is not environmentally sustainable. We need to create sustainable consumption patterns and a circular economy that does not place an unreasonable burden on the Earth's resources. Social science is needed to contribute to the solution. 

We also know that the impacts of climate change affect people differently depending on where they are in the world and which socio-economic group they belong to. A better understanding of these inequalities and how to counteract them is also a vital field of research.

Social sustainability goes hand in hand with ecological sustainability. Social vulnerability, inequality and research on low-income countries in the impoverished Global South are traditionally important research areas for social scientists. Our development research concerns living conditions, as well as opportunities and obstacles to development in parts of Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East.