Special Issue "Selected Papers from the International Conference on Sustainable Development 2017, September 18-20, 2017 New York, USA"

A special issue of Economies (ISSN 2227-7099).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2017)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Joydeep Bhattacharya

Economics Department, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +1 515 294 5886
Fax: +1 515 294 0221
Interests: macroeconomics; macro-development; social security; income inequality; fertility; diseases; demographic transition

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The International Conference on Sustainable Development 2017 (ICSD 2017), organized by the Global Master’s in Development Practice (MDP) and Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), will be held in New York City, September 18–20, hosted by the Earth Institute, Columbia University and their Center for Sustainable Development. The meeting will bring together students worldwide, topic scientists, and world leaders to provide a platform for exchanging ideas in sustainable development.

This Special Issue will host contributions to the conference related to sustainable growth, development economics, political economics, natural resources, poverty and inequality, or in a wider economic aspect. We kindly invite you to participate to this Special Issue.

Prof. Dr. Joydeep Bhattacharya
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Economies is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) is waived for well-prepared manuscripts submitted to this issue. Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Effects of Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT) in Anti-Poverty Programs. An Empirical Approach with Panel Data for the Mexican Case of PROSPERA-Oportunidades (2002–2012)
Received: 23 October 2017 / Revised: 23 March 2018 / Accepted: 2 April 2018 / Published: 1 May 2018
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Abstract
Conditional Cash Transfer Programs (CCT) have been implemented in México and Latin America since the late 1990’s. This type of program focuses on providing social government services by way of direct cash transfers to poor families that are often conditioned to the use
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Conditional Cash Transfer Programs (CCT) have been implemented in México and Latin America since the late 1990’s. This type of program focuses on providing social government services by way of direct cash transfers to poor families that are often conditioned to the use of public education and health services. Despite the apparent short-term success of these CCT programs in the Latin American context, there still is much debate about whether CCT programs are effective in alleviating poverty. This paper analyzes the effectiveness of conditional cash transfer programs as a long-term incentive in the use of public services—health and education—among beneficiary families of PROSPERA-Oportunidades in Mexico. The Average Effect of Treatment on the Treated (ATT) for the time period 2002–2012 is estimated based on data from the Mexican Family Life Survey (MxFLS) using Propensity Score Matching (PSM). The results show that the program’s impact on the use of preventive health and education services by poor families cannot be sustained in the long-term, which puts in doubt the effectiveness of this social protection intervention program in combating poverty in Mexico. Full article
Open AccessArticle Identifying Sustainability and Knowledge Gaps in Socio-Economic Pathways Vis-à-Vis the Sustainable Development Goals
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 18 February 2018 / Accepted: 19 February 2018 / Published: 26 March 2018
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Abstract
With the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the global community has set itself an ambitious development agenda. Current analytical and quantitative modeling capabilities fall short of being able to capture all 17 SDGs and their targets. Even highly ambitious and optimistic pathways currently used
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With the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the global community has set itself an ambitious development agenda. Current analytical and quantitative modeling capabilities fall short of being able to capture all 17 SDGs and their targets. Even highly ambitious and optimistic pathways currently used in research, such as SSP1/SSP1-2.6, do not meet all SDGs (sustainability gaps) and fail to provide information on some of them (knowledge gaps). We show that for research and modeling purposes, the SDG targets can serve as a basis but need to be operationalized to reduce complexity and also to account for long-term sustainability concerns beyond 2030. We have explored here the requirements for assessing more comprehensively the sustainability of development pathways, guided by holistic interpretation of the SDGs to enable an assessment of the potential embedded synergies and trade-offs between the economic, social and environmental objectives. We see this as call for action for science to work on filling these gaps. At the same time, this is also a call for policy makers and the global community to close the sustainability gaps that emerge from such analysis. We anticipate that such analysis will provide useful information for policy advice and investment decisions during implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Sustainability Performance of an Italian Textile Product
Received: 16 October 2017 / Revised: 16 February 2018 / Accepted: 26 February 2018 / Published: 12 March 2018
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Abstract
Companies are more and more interested in the improvement of sustainability performance of products, services and processes. For this reason, appropriate and suitable assessment tools supporting the transition to a green economy are highly necessary. Currently, there are a number of methods and
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Companies are more and more interested in the improvement of sustainability performance of products, services and processes. For this reason, appropriate and suitable assessment tools supporting the transition to a green economy are highly necessary. Currently, there are a number of methods and approaches for assessing products’ environmental impact and improving their performances; among these, the Life Cycle Thinking (LCT) approach has emerged as the most comprehensive and effective to achieve sustainability goals. Indeed, the LCT approach aims to reduce the use of resources and emissions to the environment associated with a product’s life cycle. It can be used as well to improve socio-economic performance through the entire life cycle of a product. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), Life Cycle Costing (LCC) and Social Life Cycle Assessment (S-LCA) are undoubtedly the most relevant methodologies to support product-related decision-making activities for the extraction and processing of raw materials, manufacturing, distribution, use, reuse, maintenance, recycling and final disposal. While LCA is an internationally standardized tool (ISO 14040 2006), LCC (except for the ISO related to the building sector) and S-LCA have yet to attain international standardization (even if guidelines and general frameworks are available). The S-LCA is still in its experimental phase for many aspects of the methodological structure and practical implementation. This study presents the application of LCA and S-LCA to a textile product. The LCA and S-LCA are implemented following the ISO 14040-44:2006 and the guidelines from UNEP/SETAC (2009), respectively. The functional unit of the study is a cape knitted in a soft blend of wool and cashmere produced by a textile company located in Sicily (Italy). The system boundary of the study includes all phases from cradle-to-gate, from raw material production through fabric/accessory production to the manufacturing process of the product itself at the Sicilian Company. Background and foreground processes are taken into account using primary and secondary data. The analysis evaluates the environmental and social performances related to the specific textile product, but also outlines the general behaviour of the company. The case study also highlights pro and cons of a combined LCA and S-LCA to a textile product in a regional context. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Low-Carbon Competitiveness in Asia
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 3 December 2017 / Accepted: 20 December 2017 / Published: 23 January 2018
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Abstract
Environmental degradation and the risks from climate change have strengthened the need for cleaner forms of economic growth. Using patent, trade and output data, we measure the current size of Asia’s low-carbon economy and assess its competitiveness across key sectors. We look at
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Environmental degradation and the risks from climate change have strengthened the need for cleaner forms of economic growth. Using patent, trade and output data, we measure the current size of Asia’s low-carbon economy and assess its competitiveness across key sectors. We look at three success factors for low-carbon competitiveness at the sector level: the ability to convert to low-carbon products and processes (measured by a specialization in low-carbon innovation), the ability to gain and maintain market share (measured by existing comparative advantages) and a favorable starting point (measured by current output and scale). Using this framework, we identify the ‘climate change mitigation technologies’ that Asian countries specialize in and can potentially scale up. The analysis shows that Asia’s top low-carbon economies are Japan, South Korea and China. The sectors in which Asia is particularly well placed to be globally competitive include efficient lighting, photovoltaics and energy storage. Overall, Asia is a specialist in innovating and exporting climate change mitigation technologies but there are significant regional disparities. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Downshifting in the Fast Lane: A Post-Keynesian Model of a Consumer-Led Transition
Received: 6 December 2017 / Revised: 1 January 2018 / Accepted: 4 January 2018 / Published: 10 January 2018
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Abstract
If the world’s countries seriously tackle the climate targets agreed upon in Paris, their citizens are likely to experience substantial changes in production, consumption, and employment. We present a long-run post-Keynesian model for studying the potential implications of a major transition on macroeconomic
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If the world’s countries seriously tackle the climate targets agreed upon in Paris, their citizens are likely to experience substantial changes in production, consumption, and employment. We present a long-run post-Keynesian model for studying the potential implications of a major transition on macroeconomic stability and employment. It is a demand-led model in which firms have considerable but not absolute freedom to administer prices, while household consumption exhibits inertia. Firms continually seek input-saving technological improvements that, in aggregate, tie technological progress to firms’ cost structures. Together with firm pricing strategies and wage setting, the productivities of different inputs determine the functional income distribution. Saving and investment, and production and purchase of consumption goods, are undertaken by different economic actors, driven by income and capacity utilization, with the possibility that productive capacity exceeds, or falls short of, effective demand. The model produces business cycles and long waves driven by technological change. We present results for a “downshifting” scenario in which households voluntarily withdraw labor, and discuss the implications of downshifting for stability, growth, and employment. We contrast the downshifting scenario with ones in which households reduce consumption without withdrawing from the labor pool. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Sets of Sustainable Development Indicators in Vietnam: Status and Solutions
Received: 21 October 2017 / Revised: 9 December 2017 / Accepted: 12 December 2017 / Published: 25 December 2017
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Abstract
There are some sets of sustainable development indicators (SDIs) at different regional scales and the Millennium development goals indicators (MDGIs) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGIs) are employed in Vietnam. Actually, building and applying SDIs have faced different difficulties and this has led to
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There are some sets of sustainable development indicators (SDIs) at different regional scales and the Millennium development goals indicators (MDGIs) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGIs) are employed in Vietnam. Actually, building and applying SDIs have faced different difficulties and this has led to a reduction in their value. Solutions to improve SDIs have been proposed and completed. This paper aims to review the SDIs, MDGIs, and SDGIs in Vietnam and to propose recommendations for building and effectively applying them in practice in Vietnam. Two national SDIs, one regional SDI, one local SDI, and some provincial SDIs, in addition to the results of MDGIs/SDGIs implementation, were analyzed. The common limitation of Government promulgated SDIs was found to not be feasible as they are applied in practice. Proposed solutions are building pilot SDIs for specific regions in Vietnam based on UN guidelines from 2007 and calculating practical values of SDIs for pilot regions, subsequently recommending relevant authorities in Vietnam to change or adjust promulgated SDIs. The experiences of procedure used to develop the pilot SDIs and effective handing over the usage of SDIs to stakeholders should also be considered when developing the sustainable development goals indicators in the future. Full article
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Open AccessCase Report Localization of SDGs through Disaggregation of KPIs
Received: 4 November 2017 / Revised: 5 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 February 2018 / Published: 5 March 2018
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Abstract
The United Nation’s Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) pick up where the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) left off. The SDGs set forth a formidable task for the global community and international sustainable development over the next 15 years. Learning from the
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The United Nation’s Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) pick up where the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) left off. The SDGs set forth a formidable task for the global community and international sustainable development over the next 15 years. Learning from the successes and failures of the MDGs, government officials, development experts, and many other groups understood that localization is necessary to accomplish the SDGs but how and what to localize remain as questions to be answered. The UN Inter-Agency and Expert Group on Sustainable Development Goals (UN IAEG-SDGs) sought to answer these questions through development of metadata behind the 17 goals, 169 associated targets and corresponding indicators of the SDGs. Data management is key to understanding how and what to localize, but, to do it properly, the data and metadata needs to be properly disaggregated. This paper reviews the utilization of disaggregation analysis for localization and demonstrates the process of identifying opportunities for subnational interventions to achieve multiple targets and indicators through the formation of new integrated key performance indicators. A case study on SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation is used to elucidate these points. The examples presented here are only illustrative—future research and the development of an analytical framework for localization and disaggregation of the SDGs would be a valuable tool for national and local governments, implementing partners and other interested parties. Full article
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