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Poorer without it? The neglected role of the natural environment in poverty and wellbeing.

Schleicher, Judith and Schaafsma, Marije and Burgess, Neil D. and Sandbrook, Chris and Danks, Fiona and Cowie, Chris and Vira, Bhaskar (2018) 'Poorer without it? The neglected role of the natural environment in poverty and wellbeing.', Sustainable development., 26 (1). pp. 83-98.

Abstract

The relationship between sustainable development’s prime goal, human wellbeing, and the natural environment has been narrowly conceived. This paper focuses on the possibility and the implications of treating the natural environment as a ‘constituent’, or internal element, of the concepts of wellbeing and poverty, as opposed to a ‘determinant’, or instrumental, external factor. Our review of philosophical accounts and conceptual frameworks of wellbeing and poverty suggests that treating the environment as a constituent element is philosophically sound, conceptually robust and empirically grounded. We argue that failing to consider these missing environmental aspects can result in an incomplete capturing of the multiple dimensions of wellbeing and poverty, and their underlying drivers. This broader framing of the environment– wellbeing relationship has the potential to inform a new generation of individual level wellbeing and poverty indicators, creating measures of multidimensional poverty that reflect the broadened scope ambitiously articulated in the Sustainable Development Goals.

Item Type:Article
Full text:(VoR) Version of Record
Available under License - Creative Commons Attribution.
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Full text:(VoR) Version of Record
Available under License - Creative Commons Attribution.
Download PDF
(127Kb)
Status:Peer-reviewed
Publisher Web site:https://doi.org/10.1002/sd.1692
Publisher statement:© 2017 The Authors. Sustainable Development published by ERP Environment and John Wiley & Sons Ltd This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Date accepted:05 May 2017
Date deposited:16 October 2017
Date of first online publication:01 August 2017
Date first made open access:No date available

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