I cannot count the number of times
in my sustainable development work when I have gone rummaging
through file cabinets looking for specific information
regarding a particular fact about sustainability. Out
of frustration, I finally decided to try and put all
in one place the many different details I have accumulated
through the last decade on this topic.
is the reason for this Manifesto. It represents
what I have
discovered through my own work
as well as what I have learned from the cutting edge
work of others on sustainable development – exploring
its meaning and getting inside its application. This
writing is an effort to synthesize and integrate significant
amounts of detail and many ideas that exist on different
elements of the global sustainability picture. And because
I have often been asked to put forward a "definition"
for sustainability, as part of my effort to synthesize
my knowledge and that of others I have also developed
a brief statement of a simple
& integrated perspective on sustainability that accomplishes a better job of beginning
discussions on the topic than to actually put forth a
"definition" which immediately tempts debate and is
always open to different points of view.
After developing a simple and integrated
perspective on sustainability that any person could understand
and relate to, it became apparent to me that many people
often relate to things better when they are expressed
in a pictorial format. The idea of sustainability permeates
the global society. It is a dynamic process which enables
all people to realize their potential, meet their needs,
and improve their quality of life in ways which simultaneously
protect and enhance our Earth's life-support systems.
Sustainability planning and action represents a multi
dimensional way - which we often have difficulty in visualizing
through the normal human perspective - to achieve recovery
and improve the quality of life for everyone. Besides
the expression of intent of a community or corporation
to become more sustainable, there needs to be development
of a mindset that will really embrace the systemic approach
that successful outcomes in sustainability plans and
actions demand. A diagrammatic model or picture that
illustrates the concept of sustainability can offer people
a way of understanding the process of sustainable development
naturally, automatically, and without conscious thought
by developing a second nature to the way we think about
and do things. The acceptance and continual use of a
visual tool, a conceptual framework, symbols describing
what we are trying to consider as a constant reminder,
helps us apply systemic thinking and action throughout
the analysis of problems and solutions toward sustainable
design processes. A holistic approach, better informed
by sustainability symbolism, is crucial
to developing new methods of analysis and decision-making. In
order to convey this idea I published a paper recently
of Sustainability: Means of Operationalizing the Concept"
that presents symbolism behind the concepts of sustainability
that can help the reader in better referring to the systemic
ways sustainable development can be presented and interpreted.
this information presented in the 3 documents cited
above I believe anyone can more effectively
collective wisdom for this concept and advocate for its
important influence on the future design and implementation
of development projects and programs that simultaneously
impact society and the environment. The sequence of manuscript
sections in the full Manifesto publication is significant
because they represent a hierarchical development of
background toward the expression of our understanding
for this complex subject area in an almost crescendo-like,
very simple interpretation of sustainability. Following
this interpretation, with all the background information
to support its rationale that even the general public
can "put their arms around," I have provided
several sections that focus upon sustainable development
implementation, including tools to use and means of potential
testing for sustainable outcomes. The reference
section of the Manifesto publication, in and of itself,
is a valuable document because it offers many of what
I believe are the most recent systemic thoughts and comprehensive
writings on the subject of sustainability.
Although some of the ideas are my
own, I have also borrowed extensively from many different
persons engaged in sustainable development teaching,
research, and practice in order to identify the extent
of our knowledge in calling attention to the significance
of advocating for sustainability goals in the growing
global society. I thank and congratulate all of those
persons for their stimulating thinking on the subject.
Manifesto's contents are listed below. The Manifest
can be obtained by downloading it here.
Manifesto also provides the foundational reading for
group workshops or retreats Five E's Unlimited offers organizations or businesses interested in their
exploring the concept of sustainable development in depth.
- Is Our
Global Society On-Track to a Healthy Future?
is Required to Change Present Conditions?
to the Idea of Sustainability
Conceptual Understanding for Sustainability Philosophy
World of Interconnections
Simple Interpretation of Sustainability to Proceed
Sustainability Is and Is Not!
That Can Guide Sustainable Actions
Practitioner’s Challenge in Sustainable Development
- Tools to
Consider in Sustainability Practice
"Practice of Sustainable Community Development"
edited Author Galley