A New Publication for a Sustainable and Desirable Future
The aim of Solutions is to encourage and publish integrative solutions to the world’s most pressing problems: climate disruption, loss of biodiversity, poverty, energy descent, overfishing, air, water, and soil pollution, and human population growth, to name a few. There is already plenty of discussion about these problems, along with an abundance of isolated and technical solutions, some of which may prove to be extremely valuable. Solutions is a forum for putting the pieces together, prompting intelligent discussion of what can be done, and what should be done. To read Editor-in-Chief Robert Costanza’s vision for Solutions, click here.
Solutions is an online and print journal, a hybrid between a popular magazine and a peer-reviewed journal. It is intended for a broad audience that reaches beyond traditional academic journals to the informed public. It will provide a much-needed forum, devoted to whole-system solutions and the design of an integrated human and natural world.
Solutions uses a much more constructive, transdisciplinary review process than typical journals. We encourage collaboration and co-authorship between original authors and reviewers.
This constructive review process improves the quality of articles and enables the development of innovative, integrative, and whole-system solutions. It allows for broader, more transdisciplinary perspectives on a topic, creating articles that appeal to a larger community, with a stronger chance of being implemented. Learn more >>
What qualifies as a solution?
We are looking for solutions that are seriously creative: they should be novel, perhaps even surprising, but also well-thought out and credible.
We prefer solutions that take a whole-systems approach. What do we mean by that? A system can be a community, a corporation, a government, or even the entire global environment. If you want to solve a problem, you need to look at these systems in their entirety and at several, nested scales, from local to global. Rather than focusing on a single link, look at the whole chain. When you start looking at the world this way, it becomes clear: everything is connected.
What are examples? A solution can be local, such as the development of a sustainable eco-village or eco-city. Or it can be grand and global, the development of an atmospheric trust to cap and trade greenhouse gases.
It doesn’t have to solve all problems, but it should recognize what problems it can solve, and what others it might cause. Solutions should address the institutional and cultural changes that may be required.
Problems can be solved at many levels. Dana Meadows, founder of the Sustainability Institute, described the most effective places to act as leverage points. At what point in the system–from a corporation to the global environment–can you make a small shift and spark a major change? A solution can be as simple as a shift in taxes or subsidies, or it can try to change the global economy. We welcome concrete goals, but we won’t shy away from efforts to think outside the system or transcend a paradigm.