In addition to 17 Sustainable Development Goals, one emerging global environmental issue in the 21 century is the gap between science and policy (UNEP, 2012). While humans may comprehend some complicated sustainability problems at some degrees, we are far from properly addressing and governing these problems. This is specifically important for a global sustainability issue with a high scientific complexity, such as global climate change. Although the sustainability science research continues to grow, few studies contribute policy-relevant output for governing the problem and fewer studies focus on evaluating the operation of these researches. Hence, a sustainability research project that can link global to local, theory and practice, research and action, and science and policy can certainly share some experiences and insights.
Therefore, this study aims to present a valuable case study that demonstrates how a domestic sustainability science research project transforms a highly scientifically-complicated global-scale problem to a more manageable local-scale problem and how multiple disciplines and agencies work accordantly toward a common research goal. Ultimately this paper hopes to contribute the field of sustainability science by providing valuable in-depth experiences in terms of the operation of a sustainability science research at domestic levels.
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17 SDGs include No Poverty; Zero Hunger; Good Health and Well-being; Quality Education; Gender Equality; Clean Water and Sanitation; Affordable and Clean Energy; Decent Work and Economic Growth; Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure; Reduced Inequalities; Sustainable Cities and Communities; Responsible Consumption and Production; Climate Action; Life Bellow Water; Life on Land; Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions; and Partnerships for the Goals (UNGA, 2015).
These prioritized global environmental issues were selected through a year-long foresight process involving over 20 distinguished scientists and 400 consulting scientists from around the word. An emerging issue is defined as ‘an issue with either a positive or negative global environmental impact that is recognized by the scientific community as very important to human well being, but has not yet received adequate attention from the policy community’ (UNEP, 2012).
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The authors would like to thank the Ministry of Science and Technology of Taiwan for funding Taiwan Climate Change Projection and Information Platform Project (TCCIP) and researchers and staffs of the TCCIP Project for providing insights for this case study review.
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Kuo, SY., Tang, TT., Hsu, HH. et al. Challenges to govern a global sustainability science problem: Lessons from a domestic climate change research project. Environ Dev Sustain 25, 2885–2904 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-021-02067-8
- Sustainability science
- Domestic research project
- Climate change
- Interdisciplinary research project
- Science and policy
- Environmental governance