Development, sustainability and international politics

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The chapter argues for a lecture of the notion of development as strongly linked to the uneven distribution of material and non-material sources of power among groups. It thus analyses the rise of a public environmentalist awareness in the late twentieth century as a challenge to the capitalist pattern of production and consumption. Finally, the chapter aims to shed some light on the process of mainstreaming these claims by subsuming them within the western model of societal transformation, under the new, catchy label of sustainable development. Pressing for institutional solutions to environmental depletion has meant to further spread the sustainability goal worldwide. On the other hand, it has also implied a kind of betrayal of the truly transformative instances of many social movements and local communities, which were seeking for a revolutionary, rather than reformative, path to societal change.




Napolitano, J. (2013). Development, sustainability and international politics. In Transgovernance: Advancing Sustainability Governance (Vol. 9783642280092, pp. 163–211). Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.

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