The theme of a just transition reconciles the sustainable use of natural resources with a pervasive commitment to sufficiency (where over-consumers are satisfied with less so that under-consumers can secure enough). It explores the perplexing logics of a range of different literatures and synthesizes them to illuminate new ways of thinking from a sustainability perspective. It rethinks development with a special reference to the greening of the developmental state, explores the key role that cities could play in the transition to a more sustainably urbanized world, and highlights the neglect of soils in the global discussions around the potential of sustainable agriculture to feed the world. Case studies drawn from the African continent detail the challenges, but they are set in the context of global trends. The authors conclude with their experience of building a community that aspires to live sustainably.
Mark Swilling is professor in the School of Public Leadership, division head of the Sustainable Development Division, and program coordinator of the master's and doctoral programs in Sustainable Development at the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, and a member of the International Resource Panel (convened by the United NationsEnvironment Programme). Eve Annecke is director of the Sustainability Institute and has taught on leadership courses at the Warwick Business School (UK), Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and various South African universities.