Sustainable development as redirected evolution. Insights from innovation studies and ecological humanities
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In this chapter, we describe and discuss similarities and differences between human evolutions with natural evolution. This is done after a bibliometric study of the use of eight concepts from ecology in the literature on innovation: evolution, eco-system, variation, retention and selection, niche, bio-mimicry, co-evolution, and the helix metaphor for collaborative arrangements between business, government, academia and civil society organisations. We argue that sustainable development should be understood as redirected evolution: getting closer to sustainable development requires a multitude of changes, each of which is subject to quasi-evolutionary processes of variation, selection, retention.
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