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We live in a crowded world of ever-increasing connectivity, with both cooperation and conflict occurring on a global scale. Individuals, companies, and communities are linked through worldwide systems of communication, transportation, and commerce. Similarly, individual products and services are linked to the global value chains in which they are created, delivered, and used. As we have seen, this connectivity presents daunting challenges to the design and deployment of new products, processes, and assets. Instead of focusing purely on the function and form of a product or service, design teams today must consider a broad range of system-level issues, including safety, security, manufacturability, serviceability, material and energy efficiency, end-of-life recovery, environmental emissions, and long-term impacts on quality of life for future generations.
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B. Gates, Business @ the Speed of Thought: Succeeding in the Digital Economy, Warner Books, 1999, p. 131.
Sustainable development is commonly defined as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” World Commission on Environment and Development, Our Common Future, Oxford University Press, 1987, p. 43.
Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, Synthesis Report, Ecosystems and Human Well-Being, Island Press, 2003.
Global Footprint Network, “China Ecological Footprint Report 2012: Consumption, Production and Sustainable Development,” http://www.footprintnetwork.org
The triple bottom line consists of environmental, social, and economic dimensions of corporate performance. J. Elkington, Cannibals with Forks: The Triple Bottom Line of 21st Century Business, Capstone Publishing, 1997.
J. Fiksel, “Revealing the Value of Sustainable Development,” Corporate Strategy Today 7/8 (2003).
Some researchers consider environmental impacts to be “acceptable” if resources are not consumed faster than the rate of replenishment and if waste generation does not exceed the carrying capacity of the surrounding ecosystem. K. H. Robèrt, The Natural Step: A Framework for Achieving Sustainability in Our Organizations, Pegasus, 1997.
B. Bakshi and J. Fiksel, “The Quest for Sustainability: Challenges for Process Systems Engineering,” AIChE Journal, June 2003, p. 1350.
World Business Council for Sustainable Development, Mobility 2030: Meeting the Challenge of Sustainability, Geneva, 2003, p. 5.
H. Daly, Steady-State Economics, 2nd ed., Island Press, 1991.
UNEP Global Environmental Outlook 4, http://www.unep.org/geo/geo4.asp
A. Lovins, Reinventing Fire, Rocky Mountain Institute, 2011.
R. Dobbs, J. Oppenheim, and F. Thompson, “Mobilizing for a Resource Revolution,” McKinsey Quarterly, January 2012.
A. D. Hecht, J. Fiksel, S. C. Fulton, T. F. Yosie, N. C. Hawkins, H. Leuenberger, J. Golden, and T. E. Lovejoy, “Creating the Future We Want,” Sustainability: Science, Practice, and Policy 8, no. 2 (Summer 2012): 63.
A. Winston, “Resilience in a Hotter World.” Harvard Business Review, April 2014.
C. Cutler, “Energy Return on Investment (EROI),” Encyclopedia of Earth, 2011.
P. Fox-Penner, Smart Power: Climate Change, the Smart Grid, and the Future of Electric Utilities, Island Press, 2010.
United Nations Environment Programme, Melbourne Principles for Sustainable Cities, 2002.
W. McDonough and M. Braungart, Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things, North Point Press, 2002.
- Looking Ahead: From Resilience to Sustainability
- Island Press/Center for Resource Economics
- Chapter Tweleve