17 Oct 2023
EC publishes report on 'Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for Ecosystem Performance – Accelerating Sustainability Transitions'
The European Commission, Directorate General for Research and Innovation, has published the 'STI for Ecosystem Performance' report, which explores challenges that hold the potential to profoundly transform the dynamic between society and nature. The report, which was published on 17 October 2023, calls for a re-evaluation and potential redefinition of this relationship, advocating a shift from the prevailing model of exploiting nature solely for societal benefits to a more balanced approach that prioritizes the simultaneous growth and protection of both nature and society.
The importance of sustainability and biosphere preservation in policy discussions is clear, but their practical implementation requires further exploration. Green transition policies are developing in a dynamic world with both promising advances and setbacks, making it difficult to discern the impact of science, technology, and innovation. As a result, defining research policy agendas becomes more complex, influenced by changing values tied to nature.
To support R&I policy in addressing this complexity, the report provides future scenarios based on three distinct value systems: One where nature is mainly an economic asset with both harm and restoration; another where it is integrated into socio-technical systems vital for societies; a third where diverse communities care for nature, including humans and non-human elements like landscapes and living beings. In this system, nature and the community are closely linked, and values continually evolve.
The study used these scenarios to highlight the significance of fast-evolving sciences and technologies in contributing to sustainability and to showcase diverse approaches to R&I policymaking and agendas.
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