Talk:Sustainability

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What is Resilience & how does it relate to Sustainability?[edit]

I've noticed that 'buzzword' complication mentioned here, and more broadly, how certain useful words & pertinent concepts they denote/connote get hijacked like this. You can practically count on that happening these days. This relates to greenwashing and perhaps a category larger than fallacial argument within which such things fall.

With that in mind, I qualify the suggestion that another new buzzword -"Resilience" might warrant mention here, either or both as it relates to the original or 'ecological meaning' of sustainability, and possibly also in the context of that larger category. I am in the half-assed process of trying to gather the meaning(s) of 'Resilience' without reading books about it ... but I'm seeing the potential of something along these lines, not quite sure what yet. It seems to be in popular use in Europe & not so much in the US, thus far.

Has anyone here heard of 'Ecocriticism' -the "new" category of literary criticism? --Greeneggs (talk) 15:33, 22 June 2014 (UTC)

I have not heard of Ecocriticism. Resilience in an economic context means ability to withstand shock (and still run stably) from various negative events like economic downturn, structural changes, lack of resources, etc.
As an example, economic resilience is one of the reasons why we would be making an industry more sustainable by applying the principles of a circular economy.
Oh right, when we're talking about ecology, resilience would refer to stability in the face of negative events in an ecological sense. Nullahnung (talk) 15:55, 22 June 2014 (UTC)


tks N. okay, I'm getting a sense of 'resilience' being used sort of to replace the term "austerity" across the ocean there, pretty it up by appealing to the inner troops, so to speak. A word used in official 'policy' talk. There are environmentalist sorts using it as well, with a different sort of spin, sort of putting a flower in it and a happy face on and dance-trudging through dystopia. I found a book that does a double-take on all that, reframing it, which looks pretty interesting.
Here's a quote for the 'austerity' association:
"Resilience has become a central concept in government policy understandings over the last decade. In our complex, global and interconnected world, resilience appears to be the policy ‘buzzword’ of choice, alleged to be the solution to a wide and ever-growing range of policy issues."
from here: http://www.routledge.com/politics/articles/resilience_the_governance_of_complexity_-_book_launch_and_roundtable/
Here's a quote from the more interesting take on 'resilience':
"What does it mean to live dangerously? This is not just a philosophical question or an ethical call to reflect upon our own individual recklessness. It is a deeply political issue, fundamental to the new doctrine of ‘resilience’ that is becoming a key term of art for governing planetary life in the 21st Century. No longer should we think in terms of evading the possibility of traumatic experiences. Catastrophic events, we are told, are not just inevitable but learning experiences ... In this original and compelling text, Brad Evans and Julian Reid explore the political and philosophical stakes of the resilience turn in security and governmental thinking. Resilience, they argue, is a neo–liberal deceit that works by disempowering endangered populations of autonomous agency. Its consequences represent a profound assault on the human subject whose meaning and sole purpose is reduced to survivability. Not only does this reveal the nihilistic qualities of a liberal project that is coming to terms with its political demise. All life now enters into lasting crises that are catastrophic unto the end." (emphasis mine)Small text
From this link to the book, by Brad Evans and Julian Reid:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Resilient-Life-Art-Living-Dangerously/dp/0745671535/ref=la_B00JH2BJ7K_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1403588537&sr=1-1
Small text
Connects to topics: free market, freedom, liberty, rights, humanism, posthumanism, liberalism, libertarianism, environmentalism
--Greeneggs (talk) 05:54, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
AFAIK resilience, if it be a buzzword, is a pretty obscure one and one that is not really used to control people rather than just suggest some smart behaviour to stakeholders. Thus I wouldn't say that it has much direct influence on things like "free market, freedom, liberty, rights, etc.". I'm not sure what the book is on about. Resilience is not some cure-all solution to the challenges we face. It is simply one of the benefits that might come to stakeholders who are interested in sustainable practice. Nullahnung (talk) 11:13, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
tks, N, that helps. I wasn't suggesting 'resilience' is a manipulation to 'take away' "free market, freedom" etc. The term is not used in the U.S. at all, but I've heard so many references to it coming from overseas, I wanted a clue.
What I'm getting at:
All that independence, individualistic ideals, liberty & 'freedom' stuff is Very Big Deal here in the U.S., yet culturally it is derived from Europe. Our sense of ourselves as a nation & people revolves around it, we are raised to presume without realizing what we presume. How many times did Bush say "they're attacking our FREEDOM"? gack. I might speak of civil rights & liberties -the Constitutional rights (Amendments) that have been undermined drastically since 9/11, but in the larger or 'natural' world our 'rights' don't apply. There may be no law that says so, but we don't have a 'right' to be negligent & irresponsible to the point of destroying the human econiche of our future children; its a social concept, a means of collective self-control, yet the presumption of rights, liberty & freedom (including 'free market') is quite relevant to our concern for sustainability (of the human econiche); needs radically to be re-examined in this context. The 'free marketers' loath the thought, have put mucho bucks into heading that off and have, unfortunately, been quite successful for the past several decades. Part of the problem may involve legal interpretations favoring individual and property rights too heavily. I think a distinction between the purpose of democratic government and the priorities of profit marketeering would be relevant here as well. Would anyone object to a section getting into these aspects of sustainability concepts?--Greeneggs (talk) 08:28, 26 June 2014 (UTC)
I see. I feel like this sort of analysis that you are doing is more suited to be in an essay that you could create in our essay space. I'm not sure, though. You could prepare a draft in your user sandbox, then get people to comment on whether it looks fit for this article or better fit for turning into an essay of its own. Nullahnung (talk) 10:10, 26 June 2014 (UTC)