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Sustainability, Volume 13, Issue 22 (November-2 2021) – 601 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): For successful climate change adaptation, the distribution of responsibility within society is an important question. While the literature highlights the need for involving both public and private actors, little is still known of how citizens perceive their own and others’ responsibility, let alone the moral groundings for such perceptions. In this work, we report the results of a survey regarding people’s attitudes toward different distributions and different principles for distributing responsibility for climate change adaptation. View this paper
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Article
Corporate Social Responsibility Disclosure and Its Effect on Firm Risk: An Empirical Research on Vietnamese Firms
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12933; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212933 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1078
Abstract
The purpose of the study was to gather empirical evidence on the influence of corporate social responsibility (CSR) disclosure on firm risk of Vietnam’s publicly listed companies. We used adjusted OLS estimation and regression analysis with adjusted panel data for heteroskedasticity and/or autocorrelation [...] Read more.
The purpose of the study was to gather empirical evidence on the influence of corporate social responsibility (CSR) disclosure on firm risk of Vietnam’s publicly listed companies. We used adjusted OLS estimation and regression analysis with adjusted panel data for heteroskedasticity and/or autocorrelation to analyze the correlation using data from 225 listed companies on Vietnam’s stock market from 2014 to 2019. The study’s sample period is relatively recent in the emerging market, especially considering regulatory differences and the availability of voluntary disclosure requirements. The findings of research on the relationship between CSR and corporate risk are mixed, particularly in developing markets. Research findings reveal a negative and significant association between CSR and firm risk, implying that stronger CSR performance lowers a company’s risk. This aims to strengthen a research perspective of this connection in emerging countries. Following that, we discuss some policy implications for listed firms and regulators in CSR disclosure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Business Development in Society)
Article
Using Fuzzy AHP-PROMETHEE for Market Risk Assessment of New-Build River Cruises on the Yangtze River
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12932; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212932 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 606
Abstract
Cruise tourism on the Yangtze River Basin has developed rapidly in recent years. However, it is still facing such challenges as homogenization of itinerary and shore attraction arrangement, as well as aging cruise ships and simplification of service facilities, while it is also [...] Read more.
Cruise tourism on the Yangtze River Basin has developed rapidly in recent years. However, it is still facing such challenges as homogenization of itinerary and shore attraction arrangement, as well as aging cruise ships and simplification of service facilities, while it is also difficult to satisfy hierarchical and personalized tourist needs. To change such circumstances, new-build river cruise ships are inevitable. Complexity of market supply and demand environment, together with variability of tourist preferences, have increased market uncertainties of new-build cruise products. This study aims to assess market risks of new-build river cruise ships first by identifying risk factors, from the perspective of supply and demand under the actual conditions of the Yangtze River cruise market, then by evaluating potential impacts, caused by risk factors based on multi-criteria decision-making considerations. Fuzzy AHP-PROMETHEE was employed to prioritize the risk factors. The results reveal that among the most significant market risk factors are the following, in sequence: backwardness of support facilities; sudden security crisis; homogenization of cruise products; simplification of tourism route design; and inadequate management of the tourism market. Such findings will provide beneficial insights for strategic and sustainable development of river cruises on the Yangtze River. Full article
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Article
Wealthy Private Investors and Socially Responsible Investing: The Influence of Reference Groups
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12931; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212931 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 1074
Abstract
Sustainable development requires a shift from traditionally invested assets to socially responsible investing (SRI), bringing together financial profits and social welfare. Private high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) are critical for this shift as they control nearly half of global wealth. While we know little about [...] Read more.
Sustainable development requires a shift from traditionally invested assets to socially responsible investing (SRI), bringing together financial profits and social welfare. Private high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) are critical for this shift as they control nearly half of global wealth. While we know little about HNWIs’ investment behavior, reference group theory suggests that their SRI engagement is influenced by their identification with and comparison to reference groups. We thus ask: how do reference groups influence the investment behavior of SRI-oriented HNWIs? To answer this question, we analyzed a unique qualitative data set of 55 semi-structured interviews with SRI-oriented HNWIs and industry experts. Our qualitative research found that, on the one hand, the family serves as a normative reference group that upholds the economic profit motive and directly shapes HNWIs to make financial gains from their investments at the expense of social welfare. On the other hand, fellow SRI-oriented HNWIs serve as a comparative reference group that does not impose any concrete requirements on social welfare performance, indirectly influencing SRI-oriented HNWIs to subordinate social concerns to financial profits. Our scholarly insights contribute to the SRI literature, reference group theory, and practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bank Management, Finance and Sustainability)
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Article
Attitudes and Considerations towards Pharmaceuticals-Related Environmental Issues among Finnish Population
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12930; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212930 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1183
Abstract
A number of policy recommendations identify the general public as a key participant in environmentally sustainable pharmaceutical policies. However, research into pharmaceuticals-related environmental issues from the population perspective is scarce. We studied the awareness among Finnish adults (n = 2030) of pharmaceutical [...] Read more.
A number of policy recommendations identify the general public as a key participant in environmentally sustainable pharmaceutical policies. However, research into pharmaceuticals-related environmental issues from the population perspective is scarce. We studied the awareness among Finnish adults (n = 2030) of pharmaceutical residues in Finnish waterways, their perceived environmental sources, views on pharmaceuticals-related environmental issues, and their association with background characteristics. Of the respondents, 89.5% were aware of the presence of pharmaceuticals in Finnish waterways. Wastewaters from the pharmaceutical industry were most frequently, and pharmaceuticals excreted by humans least frequently, considered a major environmental source of pharmaceuticals. The vast majority of the respondents were worried about the environmental and health impact of pharmaceutical residues and emphasized issues such as the importance of environmentally sustainable actions by pharmaceutical companies and the recyclability of the pharmaceutical packaging materials. Age, education, use of prescription medicines, and environmental attitude were associated with awareness of pharmaceutical residues, while gender, age, education level, and environmental attitude were associated most frequently with pharmaceuticals-related environmental considerations. These results indicate a need for improved communication about the environmental effects of pharmaceuticals and the significance of different pharmaceutical emission sources in order to promote a more environmentally friendly, effective pharmaceutical policy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Public Health, Pharmacy and Environment)
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Article
Optimizing the Potential Impact of Energy Recovery and Pipe Replacement on Leakage Reduction in a Medium Sized District Metered Area
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12929; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212929 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 607
Abstract
The drive for sustainable societies with more resilient infrastructure networks has catalyzed interest in leakage reduction as a subsequent benefit to energy recovery in water distribution systems. Several researchers have conducted studies and piloted successful energy recovery installations in water distribution systems globally. [...] Read more.
The drive for sustainable societies with more resilient infrastructure networks has catalyzed interest in leakage reduction as a subsequent benefit to energy recovery in water distribution systems. Several researchers have conducted studies and piloted successful energy recovery installations in water distribution systems globally. Challenges remain in the determination of the number, location, and optimal control setting of energy recovery devices. The PERRL 2.0 procedure was developed, employing a genetic algorithm through extended period simulations, to identify and optimize the location and size of hydro-turbine installations for energy recovery. This procedure was applied to the water supply system of the town of Stellenbosch, South Africa. Several suitable locations for pressure reduction, with energy recovery installations between 600 and 800 kWh/day were identified, with the potential to also reduce leakage in the system by 2 to 4%. Coupling the energy recovery installations with a pipe replacement model showed a further reduction in leakage up to a total of above 6% when replacing 10% of the aged pipes within the network. Several solutions were identified on the main supply line and the addition of a basic water balance, to the analysis, was found valuable in preliminarily evaluation and identification of the more sustainable solutions. Full article
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Article
Noninvasive Passenger Detection Comparison Using Thermal Imager and IP Cameras
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12928; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212928 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 663
Abstract
Many modern vehicles today are equipped with an on-board e-call system that can send information about the number of passengers in the event of an accident. However, in case of fire or other major danger in a road tunnel, it is very important [...] Read more.
Many modern vehicles today are equipped with an on-board e-call system that can send information about the number of passengers in the event of an accident. However, in case of fire or other major danger in a road tunnel, it is very important for rescue services to know not only the number of passengers in a given vehicle that has an accident and called help via e-call but how many people are in the tunnel in total. This paper deals with the issue of passenger detection and counting using the TPH3008-S Thermal camera and the VIVOTEK IP7361 IP Cameras noninvasively, i.e., the cameras are placed outside the vehicle. These cameras have their limitations; therefore, we investigated how to improve conditions and how to make detection better for future work. The main goal of this article is to summarize the achieved results and possibilities of improvement of the proposed system by adding other sensors and systems that would improve the final score of passenger detection. The experimental results demonstrate that our approach has to be modified and we have to add additional sensors or change methods to achieve more promising results. The results, findings and conclusions might be later used in tunnels and highways and also be applied in telematics and lead to better, safer road transport and improvement of existing tunnel systems sustainability by utilizing resources in a smarter way. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Intelligent Transportation Systems)
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Article
Serial Multiple Mediation of the Impact of Customer Knowledge Management on Sustainable Product Innovation by Innovative Work Behavior
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12927; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212927 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 868
Abstract
Customer knowledge management (CKM) is a relatively new research domain, aiming at exploring the potential of customer knowledge for the open innovation process of companies. The present paper aims at performing a complex analysis of the serial mediation phenomenon of the impact of [...] Read more.
Customer knowledge management (CKM) is a relatively new research domain, aiming at exploring the potential of customer knowledge for the open innovation process of companies. The present paper aims at performing a complex analysis of the serial mediation phenomenon of the impact of CKM on sustainable product innovation (SPI) by innovative work behavior (IWB). The dimensions considered for IWB in the present research are the following: idea exploration, idea generation, idea championing, and idea implementation. In the first phase of our research, we performed a semantic analysis of the main concepts, ideas, and theories, based on a critical literature review. Thus, we reached a deeper understanding of the complexity of the concept of knowledge by learning the theory of knowledge fields and knowledge dynamics. As a result of this conceptual phase, we designed the research model and a questionnaire to be addressed to managers from the business environment. In the quantitative phase of the present research, we used the statistical software packages, SPSS version 26.0, and the PROCESS macro for SPSS, version 3.5. We used well-known criteria for reliability, validation, and interpretation of the numerical results. The final results demonstrate a significant serial mediation phenomenon regarding the impact of CKM on SPI by the IWB. These results are important in developing the co-creation process of new products by using customer knowledge. The present research reveals some original ideas concerning the impact of CKM on SPI by using a serial mediation process performed by basic innovative work dimensions. The implications of the present research are significant for both academics and practitioners in designing open innovation in knowledge ecosystems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Development and Knowledge Economy)
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Article
Historical Transition of a Farming System towards Industrialization: A Danish Agricultural Case Study Comparing Sustainability in the 1840s and 2019
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12926; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212926 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 777
Abstract
A Danish pre-industrial farming system is reconstructed and compared to its modern industrialized farming system equivalent to evaluate agricultural performance in a sustainability perspective. The investigated Danish farm system and its contributing elements have undergone significant transformations. The intensity of contemporary agriculture shows [...] Read more.
A Danish pre-industrial farming system is reconstructed and compared to its modern industrialized farming system equivalent to evaluate agricultural performance in a sustainability perspective. The investigated Danish farm system and its contributing elements have undergone significant transformations. The intensity of contemporary agriculture shows that high productivity levels have been achieved by increasing the input of energy using modern machinery. At the same time, the energy efficiency (calculations based on energetic indicators) diminishes over time as the degree of dependence on fossil fuels increases. The results from this study show significant changes in the farming system, specifically inputs from agricultural land use, livestock, and energy systems. From being highly circular, the system changed to being a clear linear farming system with highly increased productivity but less efficient at the same time, questioning the relationship between productivity and efficiency and resource utilization in modern farming systems. Through utilizing an agroecological historical approach by comparing system performance over time, the results offer opportunities to explore how agricultural farming systems evolve over time and help to describe the complexity of the system level in a sustainability perspective. Full article
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Article
Urban Containment Planning: Is It Effective? The Case of Portland, OR
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12925; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212925 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 460
Abstract
The paper attempts to evaluate Oregon’s and Portland’s growth management policies as for their tradeoffs between effectiveness in containing urban sprawl and impacts on housing markets and on property values. Carruthers argued that in order to correctly evaluate growth management policies, it is [...] Read more.
The paper attempts to evaluate Oregon’s and Portland’s growth management policies as for their tradeoffs between effectiveness in containing urban sprawl and impacts on housing markets and on property values. Carruthers argued that in order to correctly evaluate growth management policies, it is necessary to jointly consider their effects on urban development patterns, on land and housing markets, and on the fragmentation of land use controls. Nowadays, we have sufficient empirical research to evaluate the effects of Oregon’s growth management policies both on land markets and housing affordability and on urban development patterns. Therefore, the time has come to comprehensively reanalyze this longstanding case of public regulation. Once again, the issue of comparing grounded-on-planning–regulations’ effectiveness with grounded-on-price regulations’ effectiveness is at stake. The paper finds that urban-containment centralized-planning in Portland and Oregon have not been effective in containing sprawl and that price-based mechanisms are the most logical solution to the excess of sprawling urban growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Urban and Rural Development)
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Article
Assessment of Global Competence of Engineers for a Sustainable World. Evidence from TA VIE Project
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12924; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212924 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 735
Abstract
This paper outlines a contemporary understanding of global competence for engineers, as understood by European engineering companies, and presents the main findings of the Tools for Enhancing and Assessing the Value of International Experience for Engineers (TA VIE) project, launched in 2018. Situational [...] Read more.
This paper outlines a contemporary understanding of global competence for engineers, as understood by European engineering companies, and presents the main findings of the Tools for Enhancing and Assessing the Value of International Experience for Engineers (TA VIE) project, launched in 2018. Situational judgment tests (SJTs), or scenario-based approaches were used to measure eleven global competences. Researchers designed the scenarios and contrasted them designing a dictionary of competences containing: the definition of each competence as well as the five levels for each competence (defined by objective behaviours that could be observed). The measurement of competences is performed through a web platform where all data are collected. Nearly 300 students from different countries fulfilled the questionaries, and the results show that students with mobility, have, in general terms, a higher level of global competence than those without international mobility. Communication and flexibility are the competences with higher impact when students enjoy an international experience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Education and Approaches)
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Article
Comparative Study of the Hazardous Chemical Transportation Accident Analyses Using the CREAM Model and the 24Model
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12923; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212923 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 581
Abstract
Compared with other types of transportation, hazardous chemical transportation is more dangerous and more likely to cause accidents, such as combustion and explosion. To better study the advantages of different accident analysis models and realize the sustainable development of the accident analysis, this [...] Read more.
Compared with other types of transportation, hazardous chemical transportation is more dangerous and more likely to cause accidents, such as combustion and explosion. To better study the advantages of different accident analysis models and realize the sustainable development of the accident analysis, this paper compares the 24Model and the cognitive reliability and error analysis method in their analyses of causes of hazardous chemical transportation accidents. Regarding their analyses of the causes of hazardous chemical transportation accidents, the causal factors of hazardous chemical transportation accidents are obtained. Then the analysis results of the two models are compared on three aspects: the object of accident influence, the module of accident analysis, and the number of accident causes. Gray correlation analysis and regression analysis are used to quantitatively compare and verify the focus of the two models on the cause of the accident. The results show that the 24Model emphasizes the safety culture of the enterprise, the cognitive reliability and error analysis method emphasizes the technology of the enterprise, and the two accident analysis models provide different emphases on preventing accidents to better achieve the goal of sustainable development. Full article
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Article
A Study on the Sustainable Use Intention of Restaurant Companies Using the Information Attributes of SNS: The Dual Process Theory
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12922; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212922 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 673
Abstract
This study was conducted to define detailed factors by combining the factors of SNS (social network services) information attributes and dual processing process theory and to investigate the relationship between customer satisfaction, brand attitude, and sustainable use intention. An empirical analysis was conducted [...] Read more.
This study was conducted to define detailed factors by combining the factors of SNS (social network services) information attributes and dual processing process theory and to investigate the relationship between customer satisfaction, brand attitude, and sustainable use intention. An empirical analysis was conducted using data collected from 361 participants who have experience in SNSs for searching for restaurant information. The major results are as follows: First, two intuitive SNS information attributes (reliability and liveliness) and two analytical attributes (usefulness and conciseness) have a significant positive influence on customer satisfaction to use an SNS. In particular, the reliability was the most significant antecedent of the SNS information attributes in this study. In addition, the current study verified the significant relationships among customer satisfaction, brand attitude, and sustainable use intention. Based on these research results, it was verified that SNS information characteristics are important attributes in eliciting customer satisfaction, attitude toward the brand, and sustainable use intention from customers. This study will contribute to providing various practical implications to establish valuable marketing strategies. Full article
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Review
The Relationship between Intangible Cultural Heritage and Urban Resilience: A Systematic Literature Review
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12921; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212921 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 861
Abstract
The need to study and understand urban resilience has been defended by academics, justified by a new global context characterized by a growing urban population and a changing climate. Moreover, the importance of intangible cultural heritage (ICH) has been recognized by UNESCO since [...] Read more.
The need to study and understand urban resilience has been defended by academics, justified by a new global context characterized by a growing urban population and a changing climate. Moreover, the importance of intangible cultural heritage (ICH) has been recognized by UNESCO since 2003. Nevertheless, the relationship between ICH and urban resilience discourses is recent, with academic studies on this topic seeing an exponential growth from 2017 onward. This article aims to develop a systematic literature review in order to answer the research question “how does intangible heritage relate to urban resilience?” and present current academic debates on this relationship. Following a methodology which entailed an academic database search and the application of exclusion criteria, 94 results from Scopus and Web of Science were retrieved and analysed. The article presents a discussion of results and showcases an existing linkage between both areas of study. This study demonstrates the fragmentation and diversity of the debates when addressing the relationship between the two topics, with an existing focus on sustainability discourses, built heritage and the role of local communities. Moreover, the article also shows a prevalence of discourses based on an engineering resilience approach. Considerations for future approaches to ICH and urban resilience are presented, namely, the need to better integrate ICH into urban resilience discourses. Full article
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Article
REaCH-Resiliency Engagement and Care in Health; a Befriending Intervention to Address the Psycho-Social Challenges of Vulnerable Youth in the Context of COVID-19 Pandemic: An Exploratory Trial in India
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12920; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212920 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 888
Abstract
The study explores the effectiveness, feasibility, and acceptability of a befriending intervention delivered by trained lay health workers to address the issues of the rural youth during the COVID-19 pandemic. We did an exploratory trial with 501 upskilled youth, where we randomly recruited [...] Read more.
The study explores the effectiveness, feasibility, and acceptability of a befriending intervention delivered by trained lay health workers to address the issues of the rural youth during the COVID-19 pandemic. We did an exploratory trial with 501 upskilled youth, where we randomly recruited 251 to the intervention group (REaCH) and 250 to the control group (General Enquiry Telephone Call-GETC). The outcome variables included in the study were depressive symptoms, wellbeing, and social support. The majority of the participants were females (64.2%), unmarried (63.55%), and hailed from economically poorer households (57.63%). The befriending intervention reduced depressive symptoms (OR: 0.95, p = 0.05) and significantly improved social support (OR: 1.03, p = 0.000) among participants in the intervention group. The participants in the intervention group had higher perceived social support from friends, families, and significant others when compared to the control group. Additionally, suicidality scores decreased for people in the intervention group from baseline to follow up; however, the results were not statistically significant. Befriending intervention is a practical, low-cost technique to sustain the youth in employment and ensure sustainable income. It inspires practitioners and policymakers to create mental health gatekeeping. The trial was registered prospectively on 27 July 2020 in Clinical Trial Registry India; ICMR-NIMS (Registration Number: CTRI/2020/07/026834). Full article
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Article
Energy Evolution: Forecasting the Development of Non-Conventional Renewable Energy Sources and Their Impact on the Conventional Electricity System
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12919; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212919 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 619
Abstract
The development of the world’s electric power systems goes back over a century. During this period, the overwhelming majority of states have formed stable, typically centralized systems for generation, transmission, and distribution of electrical energy. At the same time, technologies, primarily for energy [...] Read more.
The development of the world’s electric power systems goes back over a century. During this period, the overwhelming majority of states have formed stable, typically centralized systems for generation, transmission, and distribution of electrical energy. At the same time, technologies, primarily for energy generation, are steadily developing, which leads to the emergence of potentially effective technological solutions based on fundamentally new energy sources. The most rapidly expanding group at the moment are renewable energy sources (RES). This fact is due to the significant coverage of the potential environmental and economic benefits of using technologies based on RES in the information environment. At the same time, the process of transformation of traditional electric power systems, by integrating generation technologies based on the use of renewable energy sources, is extremely resource-intensive, and also potentially reducing the level of sustainability and efficiency of the entire system functioning as a whole. This thesis is primarily true for exclusively centralized power systems. The purpose of this study is to create a forecasting model for the development of non-conventional renewable energy sources (NCRES) for short, medium, and long term, which makes it possible to form an action plan to ensure a reliable and uninterrupted supplying of consumers, taking into account the existing electric power system. The developed model made it possible to identify the most promising directions of NCRES from the integration point of view, and for them the quantification and clustering of the information environment was carried out, which made it possible to identify key trends and the specifics of the development of technological solutions for these directions of renewable energy sources. The developed tool and systemic conclusions formulated on the basis of its application make it possible to develop mathematically sound solutions in the direction of managing the development of traditional electric power systems based on the integration of NCRES. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Renewable Energy and Energy Saving: Worldwide Research Trends)
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Review
Selected Aspects of Sustainable Mobility Reveals Implementable Approaches and Conceivable Actions
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12918; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212918 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 929
Abstract
The transportation sector plays a prominent role in driving the economy of any given nation. However, with the recent tensions arising in and around the transportation sector, sustainable mobility concepts have evolved. However, it is quite unclear whether sustainable mobility is feasible and [...] Read more.
The transportation sector plays a prominent role in driving the economy of any given nation. However, with the recent tensions arising in and around the transportation sector, sustainable mobility concepts have evolved. However, it is quite unclear whether sustainable mobility is feasible and exhibits economic returns, environmental benefits, and societal advantages. Hence, taking into account the environmental, economic, and social impact, and technical possibilities, this study intends to analyse sustainable mobility in relation to economic returns, environmental benefits and societal advantages using bibliometric analysis. For this study, we considered two decades of research, from 2001 to 2021. An in-depth search was performed on articles generated in the last two decades to assess the state of the literature on sustainable mobility. The most reverent, frequently referenced papers and influential journals in the field of sustainable mobility were identified. The acquired findings highlight the most prominent publications, journals, and authors who have made significant contributions to sustainable mobility studies, as well as the sub-areas or themes linked to sustainable mobility. Overall, the analysis discovered current paradigms, significant research topics, and a relationship between the domains of sustainable mobility studies. Meanwhile, this study also demonstrates advancements in the primary themes and sub-areas during the previous 20 years and alterations in future research fields. In addition, this study identified the promotion of rapid-reliable-safe-convenient (RRSC) transportation services, reduction in urban car traffic, and support to low transportation demand as the critical steps that require immediate attention in order to build a sustainable mobility future. We also observed that hydrogen would be a promising fuel and potential technology for the future mobility sector in the post-COVID era. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart and Sustainable EV Charging Infrastructure)
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Article
Green Credit Financing Equilibrium under Government Subsidy and Supply Uncertainty
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12917; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212917 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 638
Abstract
In this paper, we study the green credit financing equilibrium in a green supply chain (GSC) with government subsidy and supply uncertainty. The GSC system is composed of one manufacturer, two retailers, one bank, and the government. The manufacturer is subject to both [...] Read more.
In this paper, we study the green credit financing equilibrium in a green supply chain (GSC) with government subsidy and supply uncertainty. The GSC system is composed of one manufacturer, two retailers, one bank, and the government. The manufacturer is subject to both supply uncertainty and limited capital. The manufacturer invests in the R&D of green products and borrows loans from the bank. The government subsidizes banks to encourage banks to provide loans to manufacturers with lower interest rates, which is termed “green credit financing”. The two retailers decide their order quantities with horizontal competition or horizontal cooperation. We first developed a Stackelberg model to investigate the green credit financing equilibriums (i.e., the interest rate of the bank, the manufacturer’s product green degree and wholesale price, and the retailers’ order quantity) under horizontal competition and horizontal cooperation, respectively. Subsequently, we analyzed how the subsidy interest rate, supply uncertainty, and supply correlation affect financing decisions regarding equilibrium green credit. We found that a high subsidy interest rate leads to a low interest rate of bank and the manufacturer can set a high level of green product and high wholesale price, while the retailers can set a high order quantity. Finally, we compared the green credit financing equilibriums under horizontal competition with those under horizontal cooperation using numerical and analytical methods. We found that, in general, the optimal decisions and profits of bank and SC members, consumer surplus, and social welfare under horizontal competition are higher than those under horizontal cooperation. The findings in this research could provide valuable insights for the management of capital-constrained GSCs with government subsidies and supply uncertainty in a competing market. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Sustainability and Applications)
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Editorial
Sustainable Consumer Behavior and Food Marketing
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12916; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212916 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 735
Abstract
The global food system accounts for emissions amounting up to 18 Gt CO2 equivalent per year, representing 34% of total GHG emissions [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Consumer Behavior and Food Marketing)
Article
Process Parameters Optimization of Wet Shot Peening for Paint Cleaning
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12915; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212915 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 452
Abstract
Wet shot peening (WSP) cleaning technology has the advantages of being green, having a high efficiency, and producing almost no pollution to the environment. Under the development trend of green environmental protection, WSP is more and more desired by the public. However, in [...] Read more.
Wet shot peening (WSP) cleaning technology has the advantages of being green, having a high efficiency, and producing almost no pollution to the environment. Under the development trend of green environmental protection, WSP is more and more desired by the public. However, in the study of WSP cleaning paint, there is little research on process parameter optimization. Accordingly, this article uses an orthogonal experiment, taking the cleaning efficiency and the substrate removal mass as objectives, to optimize the parameters of pressure, stand-off distance, traverse rate, and cleaning times. The experimental results show that the cleaning efficiency is improved by increasing the pressure, stand-off distance, and traverse rate or decreasing the cleaning times within the scope of this experiment. The pressure and cleaning times are positively correlated with the substrate removal mass, whereas the traverse rate is negatively correlated. As the stand-off distance increases, the substrate removal mass initially increases and then decreases. The traverse rate has a significant influence on the cleaning efficiency and the substrate removal mass. The optimal process parameters based on the cleaning efficiency are 0.45 MPa pressure, 140 mm stand-off distance, 5 mm/s traverse rate, and one-time cleaning. Besides, the cleaning efficiency at such conditions is 64.23 %/min. Additionally, the substrate removal mass is optimized under 0.25 MPa pressure, 60 mm (or 140 mm) stand-off distance, 5 mm/s traverse rate, and one-time cleaning to give a substrate removal mass of approximately zero. The analysis of parameters provides a reference for selecting the parameters in the actual application of WSP cleaning. Full article
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Article
College Students’ Willingness to Separate Municipal Waste and Its Influencing Factors: A Case Study in Chongqing, China
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12914; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212914 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 596
Abstract
College students are the engine of the sustainability of the future, and their awareness of environmental protection and waste classification is very important for the sustainable implementation of urban solid waste separation projects. Chongqing is one of the first 46 waste separation pilot [...] Read more.
College students are the engine of the sustainability of the future, and their awareness of environmental protection and waste classification is very important for the sustainable implementation of urban solid waste separation projects. Chongqing is one of the first 46 waste separation pilot cities in China. The primary objective of this study was to investigate the municipal waste separation behavior of college students and its influencing factors. Data from a total of 814 questionnaires among college students from sixteen universities in Chongqing were collected. Results showed that most college students think it is necessary to separate waste, and they have executed it in their daily life. Students have a high accuracy in classifying perishable waste, but they are not familiar with the classification of waste lamps, bulbs (14.00%), expired drugs (30.71%), toilet paper (11.3%), peel (18.80%) and brick kilns (27.76%). Special attention should be paid to distinguishing recyclables and other wastes. The principal factors that affect students’ willingness to classify waste are attitude, situational factors and publicity and education, which are embodied in students’ attitude towards waste separation, the surrounding environmental hygiene, the convenience of waste separation, the ease of understanding of waste separation marks and the degree of publicity and education of the school. Four measures are recommended for improving students’ willingness to separate municipal waste based on this investigation. Full article
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Article
Transmission Mechanism of Stock Price Fluctuation in the Rare Earth Industry Chain
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12913; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212913 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 550
Abstract
The transmission of stock price fluctuations of listed companies in the rare earth industry has complex characteristics. Mastering its transmission law is of great meaning to understand the relationship between the upstream and downstream of the rare earth industry chain and market investment. [...] Read more.
The transmission of stock price fluctuations of listed companies in the rare earth industry has complex characteristics. Mastering its transmission law is of great meaning to understand the relationship between the upstream and downstream of the rare earth industry chain and market investment. This article uses the time series of daily closing prices of stocks in the global rare earth industry chain in the past ten years as the research object. The Granger causality test and complex network theory were used to construct the risk transmission network of the industrial chain. We have identified the key stocks in the network of stock price fluctuation in the rare earth industry chain and obtained the transmission path of stock price fluctuation. According to the results: (1) The stocks of Chinese and Japanese listed companies considerably influence the transmission of the stock price fluctuation in the rare earth industry chain. (2) The transmission distance of the stock price fluctuation of each network is relatively small, and the transmission speed is relatively fast. (3) The fluctuation of stock price in the rare earth industry chain is mainly transmitted from the upstream and midstream links to the midstream and downstream links. Full article
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Article
Digitalizing Higher Education in Light of Sustainability and Rebound Effects—Surveys in Times of the COVID-19 Pandemic
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12912; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212912 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 779
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic has focused attention not only on health and social issues, but on the issue of digital transformation as well. Within a very short time, universities had to convert their courses to digital formats and university life was reduced to a [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic has focused attention not only on health and social issues, but on the issue of digital transformation as well. Within a very short time, universities had to convert their courses to digital formats and university life was reduced to a minimum. To shed light on how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected universities, we investigated the following questions: How was this transformation accomplished? What advantages and disadvantages did it bring with it? How sustainable was this transformation? and What can the future of higher education look like? This study is based on the responses to two questionnaires for university staff and students conducted at the Chemnitz University of Technology between mid-July and September, 2020 (n = 369), and between February and March, 2021 (n = 252). Both questionnaires were analysed using descriptive statistics and qualitative content analysis. The results show wide variations in response to digital teaching and learning. Digital teaching and working/learning from home have brought both multiple benefits and multiple challenges at the same time. Working and learning from home was perceived as both enriching and overwhelming—even for the same individual. Respondents appreciated the flexibility associated with digital teaching, even though digital teaching was perceived as imposing excessive demands. This study reveals striking gaps in our knowledge and our actions linking digital transformation and sustainability and highlights how digital teaching can be further developed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Exploring Relationships between Digitalization and Sustainability)
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Article
Has the Economic Structure Optimization in China’s Supply-Side Structural Reform Improved the Inclusive Green Total Factor Productivity?
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12911; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212911 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 574
Abstract
One of the goals of China’s supply-side structural reform is to improve total factor productivity (TFP). Considering the problems of environmental deterioration and income disparity faced by China, this paper first incorporates environmental pollution and income disparity as undesirable outputs into the TFP [...] Read more.
One of the goals of China’s supply-side structural reform is to improve total factor productivity (TFP). Considering the problems of environmental deterioration and income disparity faced by China, this paper first incorporates environmental pollution and income disparity as undesirable outputs into the TFP analysis framework, and extends the concept of inclusive green TFP (henceforth IGTFP).We measure and analyze the IGTFP in China’s provinces from 1995 to 2017 using the Malmquist–Luenberger index, and then examine, for the first time, the impacts of economic structural optimization in the supply-side structural reform on the IGTFP. The results are shown as follows. First, China’s national IGTFP index is significantly smaller than the traditional TFP index. That is, the traditional TFP without the constraints of environmental pollution and income disparity overestimates China’s real TFP. Second, there are significant regional differences in China’s IGTFP, the average annual growth rate of IGTFP shows a gradual downward trend from east to west. This would further exacerbate the regional imbalance in China’s economic development. Third, among the structural factors in economic structure optimization, industrial structure and energy structure are negatively correlated with the IGTFP, while factor structure, labor structure and urban–rural structure are all positively correlated with the IGTFP. These results imply that the economic structure optimization driven by supply-side structural reform will improve China’s IGTFP. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Economic and Business Aspects of Sustainability)
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Article
Raising Climate-Resilient Embolden Rice (Oryza sativa L.) Seedlings during the Cool Season through Various Types of Nursery Bed Management
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12910; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212910 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 683
Abstract
Facing cold stress is amajor constraint in seedling production during the winter season as, most particularly in recent times due to uncertain climatic conditions, no sustainable technology has been reported that could be easily adopted by farmers withlimited resources. Therefore, field experiments were [...] Read more.
Facing cold stress is amajor constraint in seedling production during the winter season as, most particularly in recent times due to uncertain climatic conditions, no sustainable technology has been reported that could be easily adopted by farmers withlimited resources. Therefore, field experiments were carried out during winter 2017–2018 and 2018–2019 at the Central Research Farm of Bidhan Chandra KrishiViswavidyalaya, West Bengal, India to study the growth, survival potential, yield and nutritional and biochemical properties of boro rice seedlings as influenced by two seedbed management practices viz. conventional seedbed (farmers’ practice) and improved seedbed (polythene protected with micronutrient supplementation). The major objective was to lower the nurserybed duration without compromising seedlings’ health and to studythe economic viability during the winter season. The experiment was laid out in ten experimental units and deployed anindependent-sample t-test to compare the performance of the seedlings. The microclimatic changes were also itemized from both seedbeds. The seeds sownunder improved nursery conditions resulted in better seedling emergence (~90%) and survival percentage (~85%) as compared to the conventional seedbed (~70% and 65%). Growth attributes in terms of plant height, biomass accumulation, root characteristics, tiller count, and growth rate were observed to be better from the polythene-protected nursery bed. Theimproved nursery bed accounted for 20% higher seedling count at the time of transplantation over the conventional bed. The microclimatic situation under a polythene covering was also favorable for germination and seedling growth. Maximum nutrient (N, P, and K) concentrations, as well as chlorophyll content, wererecorded from improved seedlings. Results suggested that the improved seedbed management was apotential alternative toearly embolden seedling production during the winter to avoid climatic abnormalities. Most importantly, improved seedbeds ensured a comprehensive route from germination to healthy seedling production without any failure in thesmalltime window, which involvedless input as well as cost involvement. This technique could diffusethe problem oflate sowing conditions in the rice–rice cropping system. Full article
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Review
Linking the Development of Building Sustainability Assessment Tools with the Concept Evolution of Sustainable Buildings
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12909; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212909 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 765
Abstract
With the rapid development of materials science and construction technology, the concept of sustainable building (SB) and the Building Sustainability Assessment Tool (BSAT) have also evolved and developed. Understanding the development of BSAT and SB is of great significance to the sustainable development [...] Read more.
With the rapid development of materials science and construction technology, the concept of sustainable building (SB) and the Building Sustainability Assessment Tool (BSAT) have also evolved and developed. Understanding the development of BSAT and SB is of great significance to the sustainable development of the construction industry. This research used the bibliometric method to analyze the development and evolution in the relevant literature on SB and BSAT from 1990 to 2021, and the correlations and differences between them were investigated. We found that there are many common trends in the development of research efforts in SB and BSAT: (1) they focused solely on the environment, in the early days, and only later considered economic and social impacts; (2) the scales with which they are concerned continue to expand, from individual buildings to communities and even cities; (3) key areas, such as energy, materials, resources, indoor environmental quality, high-tech applications, adaptability, and concern for people are being given more attention by both SB and BSAT. On the other hand, the difference between them is that SB research focuses on more macro aspects, such as policy, culture, climate change, while BSAT research is more concerned with micro aspects, such as its system of tools. Furthermore, some current research gaps in the BSAT field are identified, clarifying its future research directions. By linking the evolution of the SB concept and the development of the BSAT research field, this review provides a new and valuable perspective for the sustainable assessment of the construction industry, which, itself, is conducive to the sustainable transformation of this industry, which could contribute greatly to the mitigation of global climate change. Full article
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Article
COVID-19 Concerns and Personality of Commerce Workers: Its Influence on Burnout
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12908; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212908 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 578
Abstract
We analyze burnout in a sample of commercial workers in Spain and its relationship with sociodemographic variables, personality, and concern about the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on their jobs through a cross-sectional design. Participants (n = 614) answered an online survey, [...] Read more.
We analyze burnout in a sample of commercial workers in Spain and its relationship with sociodemographic variables, personality, and concern about the influence of the COVID-19 pandemic on their jobs through a cross-sectional design. Participants (n = 614) answered an online survey, including questions about sociodemographic data, concern, NEO-FFI (personality), and MBI (burnout syndrome). The survey took place from October 2020 to May 2021. We assessed the relationships between sociodemographic variables, pandemic concern, and personality as predictors of burnout by hierarchical regression analysis and then tested using SEM (structural equation models). The proposed model showed adequate goodness-of-fit indices. The results of the present study suggest that the COVID-19 pandemic had little effect to the development of burnout syndrome in commerce employees. However, in agreement with previous literature, the present study shows that personality has a significant role in predicting burnout. Neuroticism, introversion, conscientiousness, and agreeableness were strong predictors for burnout dimensions. In addition, we found that personality directly affected the pandemic concern: individuals with high levels of Neuroticism and low levels of extraversion, agreeableness, and conscientiousness have more pandemic concerns. In conclusion, personality is an important factor that affects the level of workers’ concern about the influence of the pandemic on their job and the development of burnout syndrome. Furthermore, although we found significant differences between groups formed by various sociodemographic characteristics, the conclusion regarding this type of variable is that their ability to predict burnout is deficient. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Occupational Mental Health)
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Article
Creating Legitimacy in the ISO/CEN Standard for Sustainable and Traceable Cocoa: An Exploratory Case Study Integrating Normative and Empirical Legitimacy
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12907; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212907 - 22 Nov 2021
Viewed by 548
Abstract
The paper assesses the legitimacy of the ISO/CEN standard for sustainable and traceable cocoa during the standard-setting process and thereby to establish the degree of legitimacy achieved and to explore new sources of legitimacy in the development of sustainability standards for agricultural commodities. [...] Read more.
The paper assesses the legitimacy of the ISO/CEN standard for sustainable and traceable cocoa during the standard-setting process and thereby to establish the degree of legitimacy achieved and to explore new sources of legitimacy in the development of sustainability standards for agricultural commodities. The paper examines the normative and empirical legitimacy concerns involved in the development of the ISO/CEN standard for sustainable and traceable cocoa (ISO 34101 series). The findings suggest that while the standard-setting organisation is establishing normative legitimacy, empirical legitimacy is lacking. Absence of empirical legitimacy is a serious concern for a successful and just implementation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Geography and Sustainability)
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Article
Solving Traveling Salesman Problem with Time Windows Using Hybrid Pointer Networks with Time Features
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12906; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212906 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 651
Abstract
This paper introduces a time efficient deep learning-based solution to the traveling salesman problem with time window (TSPTW). Our goal is to reduce the total tour length traveled by -*the agent without violating any time limitations. This will aid in decreasing the time [...] Read more.
This paper introduces a time efficient deep learning-based solution to the traveling salesman problem with time window (TSPTW). Our goal is to reduce the total tour length traveled by -*the agent without violating any time limitations. This will aid in decreasing the time required to supply any type of service, as well as lowering the emissions produced by automobiles, allowing our planet to recover from air pollution emissions. The proposed model is a variation of the pointer networks that has a better ability to encode the TSPTW problems. The model proposed in this paper is inspired from our previous work that introduces a hybrid context encoder and a multi attention decoder. The hybrid encoder primarily comprises the transformer encoder and the graph encoder; these encoders encode the feature vector before passing it to the attention decoder layer. The decoder consists of transformer context and graph context as well. The output attentions from the two decoders are aggregated and used to select the following step in the trip. To the best of our knowledge, our network is the first neural model that will be able to solve medium-size TSPTW problems. Moreover, we conducted sensitivity analysis to explore how the model performance changes as the time window width in the training and testing data changes. The experimental work shows that our proposed model outperforms the state-of-the-art model for TSPTW of sizes 20, 50 and 100 nodes/cities. We expect that our model will become state-of-the-art methodology for solving the TSPTW problems. Full article
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Article
A Healthy Metaphor? The North Sea Consultation and the Power of Words
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12905; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212905 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 752
Abstract
The North Sea Consultation was set up to resolve conflicting claims for space in the North Sea. In 2020, this consultation process resulted in the North Sea Agreement, which was supported by the Dutch Parliament and cabinet as a long-term policy; however, the [...] Read more.
The North Sea Consultation was set up to resolve conflicting claims for space in the North Sea. In 2020, this consultation process resulted in the North Sea Agreement, which was supported by the Dutch Parliament and cabinet as a long-term policy; however, the fishing sector felt excluded, left the consultation process, and does not support the agreement. Using semi-constructed interviews and the method of wide reflective equilibrium, this research found that in this conflict the metaphor of ‘health’ has played a decisive role. While all stakeholders want to keep the sea ‘healthy’, they disagree on what a healthy sea actually means, leading to contrastive positions on the desirability of trawler fishing, wind parks, and conservation areas—the North Sea Agreement’s main foci of interest. To prevent the unproductive escalation of such a conflict, it is inevitable to acknowledge the moral connotations of such metaphors, as this allows a decision-making process that can be considered more just. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethics of Climate Adaptation)
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Article
Towards a Sustainable Future through Renewable Energies at Secondary School: An Educational Proposal
Sustainability 2021, 13(22), 12904; https://doi.org/10.3390/su132212904 - 22 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 656
Abstract
A compilation of innovative educational activities to work on concepts related to the production of electrical energy is presented. To approach the real-life secondary education curriculum, they are grouped to be performed during a week denominated Renewable Energy Week: an educational proposal aimed [...] Read more.
A compilation of innovative educational activities to work on concepts related to the production of electrical energy is presented. To approach the real-life secondary education curriculum, they are grouped to be performed during a week denominated Renewable Energy Week: an educational proposal aimed to promote the respect for the environment through the insight on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and renewable energy sources. The students would build and perform low-cost experiments so as to deeply understand the essence of energetic transformations, as well as electricity generation. Learning by discovery, collaborative learning and experimentation, are the methodological pillars that characterize Renewable Energy Week, since they have been proven to be efficient methodologies to promote students’ learning. Innovative techniques for pupils evaluation are employed, including a rubric, Socrative application and a set of sheets regarding experiments. Through this educational proposal, the students are expected to achieve a deep understanding of some key concepts related to electricity and awaken their interest in scientific subjects, making them conscious of the transition to sustainable development that our planet urgently requires. At the same time, this project offers to teachers a series of experiments and innovative activities to work on the SDG in Physics, Chemistry and Technology subjects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hands-On Science: Developing a Sustainable Education System)
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