Cross Discipline Approach

The International Society for Ecological Economists (ISEE) facilitates understanding between economists and ecologists and the integration of their thinking into a trans-discipline aimed at developing a sustainable world. The following are some of the broad areas and particular questions of ongoing research and discussion in ecological economics:

Modelling
How can we better integrate economic and ecological models to address management of local biodiversity, an ocean fishery, or the climate services of the global atmosphere?

Equity
How does equity between individual people, nations, and over generations relate to sustainability?

Indicators
Can we redirect development by augmenting traditional indicators such as GDP (gross domestic product) with biophysical indicators such as ecological footprint and social indicators such as the education of women?

Limits
What properties of ecological and social systems act as “limits” to development and to what extent can human-produced capital substitute for natural capital?

Trade and Development
How do current policies to promote development through capital mobility affect the control of natural resources, the ability of nations to manage environmental systems, and the distribution of well-being?

Valuation
To what extent can we measure the value of non-market services provided by ecosystems and how can we promote public discourse on environmental and social values that significantly enriches economic measures?

Policy Instruments
How should systems of tradable environmental permits and obligations, combined with environmental tax reform, be implemented.

A cross-disciplinary approach is necessary because conflicting perspectives in economics and ecology have led to economic and environmental policies that are mutually destructive, rather than reinforcing and sustainable.