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Special Issue "Peripheries, Social Vulnerabilities, Communities: Interdisciplinary Approaches, Methods and Practices for a Sustainable Future"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Social Ecology and Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 15 November 2023 | Viewed by 1074

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Francesca Romana Lenzi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratory of Psychology and Social Processes in Sport, Department of Movement, Human and Health Sciences, University of Rome “Foro Italico”, 00144 Rome, Italy
Interests: sociology of urban health; methodology of social research; sociological theory
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Maria Palazzo
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Political and Communication Sciences, University of Salerno, 84084 Fisciano SA, Italy
Interests: community relations; corporate communication; marketing; branding; management; arts and heritage marketing; CSR sustainable development
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Gabriella Punziano
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Social Sciences, University of Naples, 80136 Naples, Italy
Interests: methodology of social research; digital methods; mixed methods; political and institutional communication; risk communication; welfare and social policy; local development; tourism; peripheries
Dr. Felice Addeo
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Political and Communication Science, University of Salerno, 84084 Fisciano, SA, Italy
Interests: social research methods; digital methods; digital capital; migration; gender studies

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

a. Focus: Social vulnerabilities are a central theme that can be inferred from the 17 Sustainable Development Goals - SDGs - by the United Nations (United Nations Development Program. (2015)). Environmental and human sustainability, well-being, and equality of access to resources are among the aspects taken into account more extensively in the goals, which aim at significantly improving the living conditions of the world population, demonstrating how sustainable development cannot be achieved without a significant transformation of the way we build and manage our urban and rural spaces, our environment, our sense of community, our health.

b. Scope: This call aims to raise the question of social vulnerabilities as a central issue in the perspective of a sustainable approach to progress. Talking about vulnerability means talking about segregation, social and symbolic peripheries (OECD, 2018; Wilson, 1987; Alberio & Benassi, 2013; Marcuse, 1997), the sense of belonging that defines the community, the values of care the community has for itself (Park, 1967; Chavis & Wandersman, 2002; Farahani, 2016). This requires a rethinking of the concept of society’s well-being, as defined by the WHO (WHO, 2008). It means considering also the economic organization of the society, the spatial organization of the social groups, the material and intangible distribution of resources, the culture of lifestyles, of the communication and prevention, the methods of interpersonal relationships, the conditions of social mobility, education, access to services and land management as parameters for evaluating social sustainability. In essence, talking about social and peripheral vulnerabilities implies a redefinition of the term community as a principle from which to restart building more cohesive societies designed for ethical behavioral practices.

c. Purpose: Understanding and resolving such a complex problem requires an interdisciplinary dialogue. This call for papers is therefore urging for a comparison between different areas of study such as those on vulnerabilities, peripheries, segregation, communities and the related research methods, in order to contribute to answering the requests from international organizations to rethink the practices of building a sense of community and reduction of social vulnerabilities and to make room for sustainability as a founding value for present and future societies.

Mahmoudi Farahani, L. (2016). The value of the sense of community and neighbouring. Housing, theory and society33(3), 357-376.

United Nations Development Program. (2015). Sustainable Development Goals. [online]. United Nations. Retrieved from https://www.undp. org/content/undp/en/home/sustainable-development-goals.html

Commission on Social Determinants of Health. Closing the gap in a generation. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2008.

Park, R. E. (1967). The city: Suggestions for the investigation of human behavior in the urban environment. In R. E. Park, E. W. Burgess, & R. D. McKenzie (Eds.), The city (pp. 1-46). Chicago: University of Chicago Press. (Original work published 1925)

Chavis, D. M., & Wandersman, A. (2002). Sense of community in the urban environment: A catalyst for participation and community development. In A quarter century of community psychology (pp. 265-292). Springer, Boston, MA.

OECD (2018). Divided cities: Understanding intra-urban inequalities. OECD

Marcuse P. (1997). The Enclave, the Citadel, and the Ghetto: What has Changed in the Post-Fordist U.S. City. Urban Affairs Review 33(2): 228:264.

Alberio M., Benassi D. (2013). Povertà urbana. In: Vicari Haddock S., a cura di, Questioni urbane. Caratteri e problemi della città contemporanea. Bologna: Il Mulino.

Wilson 1987 = William Julius Wilson, Th e truly disadvantaged: Th e inner city, the underclass, and public policy, Chicago, University of Chicago, 1987.

Dr. Francesca Romana Lenzi
Dr. Maria Palazzo
Dr. Gabriella Punziano
Dr. Felice Addeo
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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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. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

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  • social vulnerabilities
  • communities
  • methods
  • social peripheries
  • interdisciplinary approach

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Performing Group-Based Physical Activity (Gbpa) in the Work-Place: Survey and Sociological Considerations of the “Happy Bones” Project
Sustainability 2023, 15(1), 480; - 28 Dec 2022
Viewed by 527
The goal of the following work was to identify the effects, positive or negative, of performing group-based physical activity (GBPA) in the workplace. In addition, the scope of the present research was to investigate some social and relational aspects of medical origin associated [...] Read more.
The goal of the following work was to identify the effects, positive or negative, of performing group-based physical activity (GBPA) in the workplace. In addition, the scope of the present research was to investigate some social and relational aspects of medical origin associated with the Happy Bones project. The sample consisted of 28 women between 47 and 67 years old, employees of the University of Rome “Foro Italico”, in menopause, and inactive. The explorative nature of the investigation and the multidimensional aspect of the variables suggested the adoption of a qualitative method. Even though the survey did not fulfil the minimum standards of representativeness, interview analysis showed a positive trend in joining physical activity in the workplace, as shown by the good compliance of the participants with the proposed workplace training protocol. Personal motivation linked to the project itself or to the corresponding activity existed albeit to a secondary extent; the unifying element of the group existed regardless of the project and was due to the home institution, hence to the workplace. Full article
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