WIT Press

Adding Coevolutionary Principles To A Holistic Paradigm Of Sustainable Development


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WIT Press


M. B. Neace


In a previous paper (Neace 2003) I proposed an holistic model of sustainable development (SD) with science knowledge at its core. In this paper the models will be extended and deepened by incorporating several concepts from Norgaard’s (1994) coevolutionary process. His basic thesis is that nature/environment and man, through knowledge, social structure/organization, values and technology co-evolve, not only within themselves but also with each other. My holistic thesis is all elements of nature, including man, are inseparably interconnected in an ongoing, dynamic, synergistic process. Merging the concepts results in a deeper, comprehensible appreciation of the many interconnections and complexities, including their fragilities, synergies and our own unknowing. I draw from his models, which overlap mine, and his six principles of coevolutionary cosmology. We agree, movement from anthropocentric processes and structures toward biocentrism requires a transition of values. Scientists, because of their unique professional status and ethos, are key catalysts in sustaining the unfolding process moving in the direction of coevolutionary harmony. Coming to grips with the man-biosphere process many truths are to be uncovered, including many stumbles along the way. Due to inherent uncertainty of the process the precautionary principle should serve as an operational underpinning. Movement toward SD is as much about future generations as it is the present generation. Keywords: sustainable development, holistic, co-evolutionary cosmology. 1 Introduction This is a work in progress. It has been and will continue to be a venture of discovery. The objective, beyond that of co-mingling two overlapping


sustainable development, holistic, co-evolutionary cosmology.