Human Rights Pathways to Just Sustainabilities
AbstractEcosystem disruptions pose a threat to us all, but are most acutely felt by the vulnerable: climate refugees, those experiencing water and food insecurity, or those displaced by pollution and ecosystem degradation. We struggle to find “solutions,” but they often pale in comparison to the risks we face. Collaborative approaches to sustainability that strive for balance between humans and nature are necessary but insufficient for addressing destabilizing trends. This paper argues that shifting the focus to destructive social relations and imbalances among humans unveils critical insights into to our destructive relationship with nature. A sociological view of human rights—in particular where they meet sustainability challenges—can sharpen this focus, providing guardrails within which to conceptualize, measure, and address systemic sociopolitical dimensions of sustainability challenges. The relative clarity of human rights (compared to the more amorphous “justice”), their increasing institutionalization in law and policy, and their broad legitimacy provides a structure to give “teeth” to transformational efforts stymied by inertia or unyielding power dynamics. Examples from original research and secondary literature demonstrate the utility of human rights as mechanisms of social transformation, setting boundaries for accountability and conflict resolution and laying the ground for building more just and sustainable futures. View Full-Text
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Haglund, L. Human Rights Pathways to Just Sustainabilities. Sustainability 2019, 11, 3255.
Haglund L. Human Rights Pathways to Just Sustainabilities. Sustainability. 2019; 11(12):3255.Chicago/Turabian Style
Haglund, LaDawn. 2019. "Human Rights Pathways to Just Sustainabilities." Sustainability 11, no. 12: 3255.
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