Books  Sustainable Development  Sustainable Development: General 

Understanding Sustainable Development


By: John Blewitt(Author)

384 pages, 38 b/w illustrations, 12 tables


Paperback | Aug 2014 | Edition: 2 | #213992 | ISBN-13: 9780415707824
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £25.99 $33/€29 approx
Hardback | Jul 2014 | Edition: 2 | #213991 | ISBN-13: 9780415707817
Availability: Usually dispatched within 6 days Details
NHBS Price: £89.99 $116/€99 approx

About this book

This new and expanded edition builds upon the first edition's powerful multi-perspective approach and breath of coverage. A truly comprehensive introduction to sustainable development, it is designed specifically to allow access to the topic from a wide range of educational and professional backgrounds and to develop understanding of a diversity of approaches and traditions at different levels.

This second edition includes: a complete update of the text, with increased coverage of major topics including ecosystems; production and consumption; business; urban sustainability; governance; new media technologies; conservation; leadership; globalization and global crises; sustainability literacy and learning; more examples from the Global South and North America, while retaining its unique coverage of first world countries; chapter aims at the start and summaries at the end of each chapter; glossary of key terms; a new chapter on Conservation with a focus on behaviour change and values; a brand new website which includes discussion of how projects are done on the ground, additional exercises and online cases, test questions and recommended readings and films.

Offering boxed examples from the local to the global, Understanding Sustainable Development is the most complete guide to the subject for course leaders, undergraduates and postgraduates.

"Synthesizing the broad array of ideas, debates and approaches to 'Sustainable Development' is no easy task. This book does an excellent job of covering the critical issues, and in a very readable form. It moves deftly from theory to practice, touching down in different parts of the world, from China to South America, from the U.S. to the U.K. The inclusion of up-to-date topics like the role of the internet, computers, television and film in sustainable development is most welcome, indeed."
– Lawrence Herzog, San Diego State University, USA

"John Blewitt's revised and updated edition is truly a bridge – elegantly and comprehensively connecting theory with practice, socio-economic and political understanding with environmental performance, and the reader to a vast solar system of ideas, solutions and real world examples of sustainability."
– Jeff Loux, University of California, Davis, USA

"A very comprehensive, resourceful and user-friendly book for developing an understanding of sustainable development and of its interpretation in different policy areas, contexts and sectors; this textbook is essential for both students and teachers."
– Paola Gazzola, Newcastle University, UK

"This is a comprehensive, authoritative and accessible contribution to sustainable development which can only come from an author who has decades of experience in the field. John Blewitt combines meticulously researched chapters with deeply reflective questions and a clarity of argument that makes this book essential reading for all"
– Daniella Tilbury, University of Gloucestershire, UK and Chair of the UN Global Monitoring and Evaluation Expert Group on Education for Sustainable Development

"Understanding Sustainable Development introduces students and professionals to the basic concepts of sustainability and leads them – step by step – to explore inherent paradoxes and complexity of social, economic and environmental issues. A must read for everybody interested in (critical) theory of economic development, sustainability, and related subjects of globalization, democracy and neoliberalism."
– Helen Kopnina, The Hague University of Applied Sciences, the Netherlands

"Understanding Sustainable Development provides both an excellent introduction to sustainability for those new to the field exploring sustainability links with their own background interests, and for those sustainability professionals, keen to keep abreast of the dynamic field. The new edition continues to reflect the interdiscipinary nature of sustainability, embracing many different perspectives, and its many dimensions, providing a great supporting text for those new and old to the field of sustainability teaching, research and in their professional and personal lives."
– Zoe Robinson, Keele University, UK

"Sustainable development presents students with a confusing interdisciplinary kaleidoscope of technical issues, research problems and policy arenas. The Second Edition of John Blewitt's text achieves the holy grail of scholarly exposition. Succinct but comprehensive and combining clarity with technical accuracy, students are gifted a comprehensive overview that is easy to read. I have used Understanding Sustainable Development with students from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds. The text has always worked well and has become a primary teaching resource."
– Stephen Quilley, University of Waterloo, Canada

Related titles

See the previous edition

Understanding Sustainable Development

Sustainable development is notoriously difficult to grasp for students and...

NHBS Price: £21.99 $28/€24 approx



1. Towards Sustainable Development
2. Worldviews and Ethical Values: Towards an Ecological Paradigm
3. Cultural and Contested Understandings of Science and Sustainability
4. Connecting Social with Environmental Justice
5. Sustainable Development, Politics and Governance
6. Conservation and Sustainable Development
7. Beyond the Imperatives of Economic Growth and 'Business as Usual'
8. Envisioning Sustainable Societies and Urban Areas
9. Tools, Systems and Innovation for Sustainability
10. Communication and Learning for Sustainability
11. Leading the Sustainability Process

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John Blewitt is the Director of the MSc Social Responsibility and Sustainability, Aston Business School, Aston University, UK.

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