Sustainability Science

, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 349–362 | Cite as

The social dimension as a driver of sustainable development: the case of family farms in southeast Spain

  • Emilio Galdeano-GómezEmail author
  • Juan Carlos Pérez-Mesa
  • Ángeles Godoy-Durán
Case Report
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Sustainability Science Innovation and Capacity Development


The social pillar has often been treated as an ‘add on’ in sustainable development studies, and analyses of its ‘proactivity’ in economic, environmental, and social transformations to sustainability outcomes are scant. The present paper looks at the social dimension as a key driver of sustainable development. Social factors in the farming system in southeast Spain are analyzed to show how family farms and their networks can integrate socio-economic and eco-social goals, promoting the generation of synergies and trade-offs between the dimensions of sustainability. This study contributes to existing debate on the role of family farms in the framework of European rural development.


Sustainable development Social dimension Family farms Socio-economic factors Eco-social goals Southeast Spain 



This research was partially funded by Spanish MCINN and FEDER aid (Projects ECO2011-24930 and ECO2014-52268) and by the Junta de Andalucía (Project SEJ-5827, Consejería de Economía, Innovación y Ciencia).


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emilio Galdeano-Gómez
    • 1
    Email author
  • Juan Carlos Pérez-Mesa
    • 1
  • Ángeles Godoy-Durán
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Almería, Agrifood Campus of International Excellence (ceiA3)AlmeríaSpain

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