Approaches for Framing Sustainability Challenges: Experiences from Swedish Sustainability Science Education

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterpeer-review


Sustainability challenges are defined by their complex and multifaceted interactions between nature and society and contention as to how and where to direct problem-solving efforts. This chapter presents four different approaches that exist for framing sustainability challenge areas that are introduced and worked with by students in LUMES International Master Programme in Environmental Studies and Sustainability Science at Lund University in Sweden. The approaches include the (1) Driver-Pressure-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) framework, (2) causal loop diagrams (CLDs), (3) multi-scale and level perspective, including transition theory and management, and the SES framework. Each approach is described and critically assessed, especially from the perspective of student mastery. The outcome of the chapter is a more comprehensive understanding of which approaches are useful for different sustainability problem constellations and a deeper comprehension of how the framing tools can be taught in sustainability science education.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFraming in Sustainability Science
Subtitle of host publicationTheoretical and Practical Approaches
Place of PublicationSingapore
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)978-981-13-9061-6
ISBN (Print)978-981-13-9060-9
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Nov 13

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Social Sciences Interdisciplinary


  • Framing approaches
  • Sustainability education
  • Transition theory
  • SES framework
  • Sweden
  • CLDs


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