Inequality and the Biosphere Project


PI Carl Folke, senior advisor Anne-Sophie Crépin. Co-PI’s Emilie Lindkvist, Juan Rocha, Caroline Schill & Patrik Henriksson. With collaborators Maike Hamann, Tom Chaigneau, Tong Wu, Robert Heilmyr, Andrew Tilman, Alon Shepon, Amir Jina, Jonas Hentati-Sundberg, Yolanda Lopez,-Moldanado Tracie Curry, Kevin Berry, Inge van den Bijgaart, Matías Piaggio, Jiangxiao Qiu

Inequality and the Biosphere: Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in an unequal world

This project departs from that reducing inequalities in society and maintaining healthy marine and terrestrial ecosystems are pivotal to achieving sustainable development, yet the interactions between these goals have been largely underexplored. In this project we aim to identify synergies and trade-offs between reducing inequalities (SDG 10) and safeguarding the biosphere (SDGs 14 and 15).

In this project we will:

1) collect and synthesize data at different scales to identify patterns between different types of inequality and environmental indicators
2) investigate critical processes through which inequalities in natural resource production and management systems enable or hinder the achievement of biosphere-related SDGs, as exemplified in the seafood and palm oil industries in Indonesia
3) concurrently engage with stakeholders in local communities in Indonesia, as well as governments, businesses, and NGOs from local to global levels, to identify practices that can harness win/win interactions between SDGs while minimizing trade-offs.

This project will therefore not only contribute new data and scientific knowledge regarding the interactions between key SDGs, but also enable the application of this knowledge for transformative action at the local, regional, as well as global scale.

The core team consists of the following BYS members but the whole team will continue to meet yearly and together make progress on our research. The project is based at The Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics and in partnership with the Stockholm Resilience Centre; CST, South Africa; University of Exeter, UK; Penn University, USA; University of California, USA; and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, China.