Special Issue: "The Metabolism of Islands"

A special issue on the metabolism of island will be published in Sustainability, an online open access journal. This special issue belongs to the section "Social Ecology and Sustainability". Submission of papers is now open and publication of accepted papers will be on a rolling basis until 31 August 2019. Below follows the call from the guest editors.


Dear Colleagues,

Based on a materials stock and flow principle, the field of Industrial Ecology systematically analyzes interactions between human/industrial activities and the environment, in order to move towards practices that are sustainable in the long-term. The emphasis is on society’s resource use and resource efficiency at multiple scales. The concept of “social metabolism" and its accounting framework, Material and Energy Flows Analysis (MEFA), have made considerable advancements in the ability to measure resource throughput for understanding long-term trends in national and global resource use.

Islands are excellent focal points for studies of Industrial Ecology. Not only does the clear boundary of islands simplify tracking resource flows, but the limited resource availability and carrying capacity of small islands warrant better tracking and management of these inputs and outputs. The challenge of resource security on small islands is further aggravated by the global environmental change. Sea level rise and extreme weather events result not only in infrastructure losses but also in the immediate loss of critical services. Restoring the services provided by these stocks comes with large material requirements for reconstruction, oftentimes incurring huge debts.

This Special Issue invites contributions that look at material stocks and flows on small islands (states) and how such insights can support island societies to move towards more sustainable and resilient modes of production, consumption and infrastructure development.

Prof. Dr. Simron Singh
Prof. Dr. Marina Fischer-Kowalski
Prof. Dr. Marian Chertow
Guest Editors

Read more and submit your manuscript on the Sustainability website.

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