The Sustainability & Policy group adopts new approaches and tools to respond to the theoretical and methodological challenges of sustainability science in solving concrete societal problems. Its research includes: welfare studies, including social and economic policy; the socio-economics of ageing; third sector and non-governmental organisations; local sustainable development; natural resources and environment management; and corporate social responsibility. The S&P group believes that by interacting with society, research plays an important role in the progress and improvement of the policies and practices of sustainable development.
Researchers in this group have diverse backgrounds (e.g., Management, Economy, Sociology, Natural Sciences) and contribute to enabling a better understanding of the complex problems associated with sustainability. Their studies have been published in many top international journals (including the European Journal of Ageing, Health & Place, Journal of Cleaner Production, Water Resources Management, Tourism Economics), books and book chapters. The group organises conferences and summer schools and consolidates its international networks throughout joint papers and project proposals. It cooperates in the teaching of PhD programmes and has invested in sharing expertise with society through the provision of scientific consulting services.
Further research is planned on public expenditures and welfare programmes. Research on ageing is to include studies on inter-generational economic transfers and social and economic inequalities. An area which is to be developed is the use of network approaches to local sustainable development, focusing on community involvement and landscape dynamics. Research on sustainable food, including organic food and consumer trust, agroforestry and agrobiodiversity will also be pursued, as well as the concepts and practices of corporate social responsibility and business ethics in organisations.