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On Sustainability: an economic approach

Staff research note

This note by Ana Markulev and Anthea Long was released on 14 May 2013.

'Sustainability' is invoked as a desirable objective in a range of contexts, yet its meaning is not always clear. Sustainability can imply vastly different policy responses depending on interpretation, particularly in relation to the degree to which environmental and other resources should be consumed over time.

Using an economic framework for exploring the issues, this staff research note illustrates possible interpretations of sustainability and what they imply for policy analysis.

Staff research notes have been prepared and are authored by individual staff to advance understanding of issues on the Commission's supporting research program. The views expressed in these notes are those of

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