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Assessing research trends related to Sustainable Development Goals: local and global issues

Salvia, AL and Leal Filho, W and Brandli, LL and Griebeler, JS (2019) Assessing research trends related to Sustainable Development Goals: local and global issues. Journal of Cleaner Production, 208. pp. 841-849. ISSN 0959-6526

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Abstract

© 2018 Elsevier Ltd The Sustainable Development Goals agreed by the United Nations in September 2015 comprise 17 goals and 169 targets aimed at integrating matters related to sustainable development into the overall economic, environmental and social frameworks of countries. Whereas the SDGs have a global dimension, their action implementation depends on the level of priority different countries give to them, and on how sustainability issues compete with a country's main problems. The aim of this paper was to identify the main Sustainable Development Goals approached by experts from different geographic regions, according to their experience and research area, and to discuss the relation between these goals and the main local issues and challenges of each region. The methodology starts with snowball sampling to collect information from experts from all geographic regions, through contact networks of universities in different countries. With the information about the goals researched by the participating experts, an analysis of the relation between the study focus and the geographical regions of origin was conducted. A total of 266 specialists from North America, Latin America/Caribbean, Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania participated in the survey. Based on the sample used, it can be said that there is a relation between the local problems or challenges observed in some regions and the main areas of interest of the surveyed experts, with a general emphasis on the study of goals 4, 11 and 13. Based on the data gathered, the paper presents a set of examples of positive and negative situations in the various regions, and considers the extent to which some Sustainable Development Goals are being pursued by research on a worldwide basis.

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