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March 2012

Green Economy and Sustainable Development

Bringing Back the Social Dimension

In the lead up to the 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20), and 20 years after sustainable development was popularized at the first UN Earth Summit in 1992, the concept of green economy has taken center stage in international development circles. It emphasizes the need to shift from high to low carbon systems and transform patterns of investment, technological innovation, production and consumption, at a time when multiple global crises—food, fuel and finance—have revealed the limits and contradictions of current development models based on the exploitation of finite natural resources.

© 2011 United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD)

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Author:

Kiah Smith, Hanna Sjolund, Peter Utting

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Issue:

26

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