More than a buzzword

Photo of a green forest

Defining sustainability

Sustainability has become a buzzword that is used in all sorts of different contexts: in politics, in science, in advertising. But is the term even clearly defined, or does it mean something different depending on the situation? 

Defining sustainability


Get the latest press releases and invitations for the Science Year 2012. If you have questions, you can contact our editorial team of the Science Year 2012. And find out more how you can meet us at twitter and facebook.


Science Year 2012 “Project Earth: Our Future”

The Science Year 2012 “Project Earth: Our Future” is dedicated to research for sustainable development. Sustainability research is the key to the future. We need to find a research approach that encompasses economic, ecological and social aspects – without solving one problem at the expense of another. 

Climate change, demographic change and the loss of biodiversity are global challenges which will have to be solved in coming years. Researchers in the fields of environmental research, energy research, economics and the humanities are working on preserving the planet for future generations. The Science Year 2012 “Project Earth: Our Future” is dedicated to sustainability research, thus continuing the tradition of interdisciplinary dialogue on issues that are vital for the future of society. 

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The Earth is online

Short Film Earthbook


The Earth in a social network? Yes, the Earth uses Earthbook. And it got a new friend request: Humankind wants to start a virtual relationship with Planet Earth via Earthbook. Confirm? Not now? You want to know how the story ends - watch the new short film!

Watch the short film

Higher Education Sustainability Initiative for Rio +20


Sustainable Higher Education

On the occasion of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012, the leaders of the international academic community are called upon to commit to the development of sustainable practices for Higher Education Institutions. They are invited to sign on to a Declaration.

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Researchers introduce themselves

foto of Martina Padmanabhan

The BioDIVA research project

A small piece in the puzzle of solving global challenges: Dr Martina Padmanabhan's research aims to contribute to encouraging women in India to use their traditional knowledge of rice cultivation to promote sustainability in agriculture 

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