Earthscan is an English-language publisher of books and journals on climate change, sustainable development and environmental technology for academic, professional and general readers.

Parent companyRoutledge
FounderInternational Institute for Environment and Development
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Publication typesbooks, academic journals
Nonfiction topicsclimate change, sustainable development and environmental technology


Earthscan was founded by the International Institute for Environment and Development in the 1980s. After making a loss, it became an independent publisher, although still printing many books emanating from IIED research. These included Desertification (ISBN 0-905347-37-4), by Alan Grainger, first published in 1982. Natural Disasters: Acts of God, or Acts of Man? (ISBN 0-905347-54-4) by Anders Wijkman and Lloyd Timberlake was published in 1984, and in May 1988 two titles were published: Women and Environment in the Third World (which discusses, among other topics, the Chipko movement[1]) and The Greening of Aid.

In August 2009 Earthscan launched their Earthcasts [2] series of free hour-long interactive Webcast sessions on sustainability, climate change and Corporate Social Responsibility. Notable figures who have participated in the series include Tim Jackson and Robert Costanza. In October of the same year Earthscan acquired the publishing assets of RFF Press, the publishing imprint of Resources for the Future.[3]

In March 2010 Earthscan won three Independent Publishing Awards, including the top prize of Independent Publisher of the Year, becoming only the second publishing company to win three Independent Publishing Awards in a single year.[4]

In January 2011 Earthscan's name and the backlist was bought by one of the "big four" academic publishers, Taylor & Francis, for an undisclosed sum.[5] The Earthscan imprint is still used, and sits under the Routledge imprint. Several staff lost their jobs and the London office was closed.

Earthscan authors include Lester Brown, Walt Patterson, Al Gore (Earth in the Balance), the IPCC, Tim Jackson (Prosperity Without Growth), Amory Lovins (Natural Capitalism), Molly Scott Cato, Jonathon Porritt, Felix Dodds, Chris Goodall (How to Live a Low-Carbon Life), Oliver Payne (Inspiring Sustainable Behaviour: 19 Ways to Ask for Change), Clive Hamilton (Requiem for a Species), and Sakiko Fukuda-Parr.

Notes and references

  1. ^ Dankelman, Irene; Davidson, Joan (1988). "[Studying Chipko Movement] Pakistani Women Visit India's Environmental NGOs". Women and Environment in the Third World: Alliance for the Future. London: Earthscan. p. 129. ISBN 1-85383-003-8. OCLC 17547228. Retrieved 25 September 2013.
  2. ^ Relax News (19 November 2009). "Earthcasts offer a pre-COP15 primer on climate change". The Independent. Retrieved 25 September 2013.
  3. ^ Milliot, Jim (8 October 2009). "Earthscan Acquires Assets of RFF Press". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 25 September 2013.
  4. ^ IPG (20 March 2010). "Earthscan Leads Independent Winners of the 2010 Independent Publishing Awards" (Press Release). Independent Publishers Guild. Archived from the original on 16 April 2010. Retrieved 25 September 2013. IPG Independent Publisher of the Year: Earthscan [...] Lightning Source Academic & Professional Publisher of the Year: Earthscan [...] International Achievement of the Year: Earthscan
  5. ^ Williams, Charlotte (3 February 2011). "Earthscan acquired by Taylor & Francis". The Bookseller. Retrieved 25 September 2013.

External links

An Introduction to Sustainable Development

An Introduction to Sustainable Development is a 2007 Earthscan book which presents sustainable development as a process that "meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs". This textbook examines the environmental, economic, and social dimensions of sustainable development by exploring changing patterns of consumption, production, and distribution of resources. Case studies include coastal wetlands; community-based water supply and sanitation systems; and sustainable energy, forest, and industrial development.Author Peter P. Rogers is a Professor of Environmental Engineering at Harvard University, USA. Co-authors Kazi F. Jalal and John A. Boyd are lecturers at Harvard’s Extension School.

Beyond the Limits

Beyond the Limits is a 1992 book continuing the modeling of the consequences of a rapidly growing global population that was started in Limits to Growth. Donella Meadows, Dennis Meadows, and Jørgen Randers are the authors and all were involved in the original Club of Rome study as well. Beyond the Limits (Chelsea Green Publishing Company) and Earthscan addressed many of the criticisms of the Limits to Growth book, but still has caused controversy and mixed reactions.

Commonwealth Association of Planners

The Commonwealth Association of Planners, abbreviated to CAP, was formed provisionally on 23 September 1970, and its constitution ratified in March 1973, to, among other things;

"promote co-operation between member organisations and between individuals in the commonwealth, to achieve the most effective contribution by planners to the wellbeing of society, and the creation of a satisfactory environment."In 2002 this was amended. The phrase "a satisfactory environment" was deleted and replaced by "more sustainable settlements and adequate shelter for all". This terminology derived from the Habitat Agenda that was agreed at the 1996 UN Habitat II meeting in Istanbul. It reflected the start of an increasingly close link between CAP and UN Habitat.

The association produces newsletters roughly three times a year, and holds conferences for planning theorists and practitioners. CAP was led by Heriot-Watt professor Cliff Hague from 2000–2006, under whom the association played a significant role in developing "new urban planning" in response to the rapid urbanisation and increased slum settlements in cities across the globe. From 2006–10 he was Secretary-General of CAP. Since 2010 Clive Harridge has been Secretary-General. CAP works with the Commonwealth Association of Architects, the Commonwealth Engineering Council and the Commonowealth Association of Surveying and Land Economy: these act together as Built Environment Professions in the Commonwealth (BEPIC). CAP also works with other Commonwealth partners as ComHabitat.

CAP led the case for the "re-invention" of planning at the 2006 UN Habitat World Urban Forum, where a book was launched to support this advocacy. The book. Making Planning Work: A Guide to Approaches and Skills was published by Earthscan. In 2010 CAP has produced two Discussion Papers published by the Commonwealth Secretariat. These are Gender in Planning and Urban Development and The State of the Cities: Why and How the Commonwealth must address the challenge of Sustainable Urbanisation.

Since 2006 CAP has been led by president Christine Platt.

Comprehensive Assessment of Water Management in Agriculture

The report A Comprehensive Assessment of Water Management in Agriculture was published in 2007 by International Water Management Institute and Earthscan in an attempt to answer the question: how can water in agriculture be developed and managed to help end poverty and hunger, ensure environmentally sustainable practices, and find the right balance between food and environmental security?

Energy carrier

An energy carrier is a substance (fuel) or sometimes a phenomenon (energy system) that contains energy that can be later converted to other forms such as mechanical work or heat or to operate chemical or physical processes.

Such carriers include springs, electrical batteries, capacitors, pressurized air, dammed water, hydrogen, petroleum, coal, wood, and natural gas. An energy carrier does not produce energy; it simply contains energy imbued by another system.

Environmental policy of the European Union

The European Union (EU) is considered by some to have the most extensive environmental laws of any international organisation. Its environmental policy is significantly intertwined with other international and national environmental policies. The environmental legislation of the European Union also has significant effects on those of its member states. The European Union's environmental legislation addresses issues such as acid rain, the thinning of the ozone layer, air quality, noise pollution, waste and water pollution, and sustainable energy. The Institute for European Environmental Policy estimates the body of EU environmental law amounts to well over 500 Directives, Regulations and Decisions.

Environmental security

Environmental security examines threats posed by environmental events and trends to individuals, communities or nations. It may focus on the impact of human conflict and international relations on the environment, or on how environmental problems cross state borders.


Ethnobiology is the scientific study of the way living things are treated or used by different human cultures. It studies the dynamic relationships between people, biota, and environments, from the distant past to the immediate present."People-biota-environment" interactions around the world are documented and studied through time, across cultures, and across disciplines in a search for valid, reliable answers to two 'defining' questions: "How and in what ways do human societies use nature, and how and in what ways do human societies view nature?"

Felix Dodds

Felix Dodds is an author, futurist and activist. He has been instrumental in developing new modes of stakeholder engagement with the United Nations, particularly within the field of sustainable development. In 2019 he was a candidate to be the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme. Dodds was the Executive Director of Stakeholder Forum for a Sustainable Future from 1992–2012. He is probably best known as the author of How to Lobby at Intergovernmental Meetings: Mine is a Café Latte, written with co-author Michael Strauss.

Dodds' most recent book, is Negotiating the Sustainable Development Goals he wrote with Ambassador Donoghue and Jimena Leiva Roesch which is the third book in the Vienna Cafe Trilogy with the 2013 book From Rio+20 to the New Development Agenda written with Jorge Laguna Celis and Liz Thompson and the 2012 book Only One Earth – The Long Road via Rio to Sustainable Development written with Michael Strauss and Maurice Strong. The books look at the Rio+20 process and outcomes and the last forty years and the challenges for the future. His previous books include the Water, Food, Energy and Climate Nexus edited with Jamie Bartram which takes up the themes of three of his other books on human and environmental security. These are Biodiversity and Ecosystem Insecurity edited with Dr. Ahmed Djoghlaf UN Convention on Biological Diversity Executive Secretary this is a companion book to Climate Change and Energy Insecurity edited volume with Andrew Higham and Richard Sherman and Human and Environmental Security: An Agenda for Change they argue that the new paradigm facing the world is the interface between environmental, human, economic security considerations. Dodds argues that this is due to the failure of developed countries to deliver on promises made during the 1992 Rio Earth Summit and the 2002 World Summit in Johannesburg.

Human and Environmental Security: An Agenda for Change was nominated for the International Studies Association Sprout Award in 2006 for the most significant publication in the field of environmental studies. In 2010 Green Eco Services listed him as one of the twenty five environmentalists ahead of their time [1].

He has two children.

Geography of the European Union

The geography of the European Union describes the geographic features of the European Union (EU), a multinational polity that occupies a large portion of Europe and covers 4,422,773 km2 (1,707,642 sq mi). Its European territory extends northeast to Finland, northwest to Ireland, southeast to Cyprus (an island that is physiographically part of Asia) and southwest to Iberia. Additionally, the EU includes numerous islands around the world, and French Guiana in South America.

Collectively, it represents the seventh largest territory in the world by area. Including all overseas territories, the EU shares borders with 20 countries.

Prosperity Without Growth

Prosperity Without Growth is a book by author and economist Tim Jackson. It was originally released as a report by the Sustainable Development Commission. The study rapidly became the most downloaded report in the Commission's nine-year history when it was published in 2009. The report was later that year reworked and published as a book by Earthscan. A revised and expanded edition (Prosperity Without Growth: Foundations for the Economy of Tomorrow) was published in January 2017.

Ragnar Löfstedt

Ragnar E. Löfstedt (born 1964) is the Professor of Risk Management at King's College London and the Director of King's Centre for Risk Management (KCRM).

Robert Chambers (development scholar)

Robert John Haylock Chambers OBE (born 1 May 1932) is a British academic and development practitioner. He spent his academic career at the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex. In 2013 he became an honorary fellow of the International Institute of Social Studies.

Surviving the Century

Surviving the Century: Facing Climate Chaos and Other Global Challenges, edited by Herbert Girardet, is the first major book from the World Future Council, published by Earthscan in 2007. Eight main issues relating to the politics of climate change are covered in the book: countering climate chaos, renewable energy policy, creating sustainable cities, local farming systems, rainforests and climate change, cradle to cradle production systems, an alternative vision for trade and creating a living democracy.


Sustainability is the ability to exist constantly. In the 21st century, refers generally to the ability to exist of the biosphere and human civilisation. Defined also as the process of people maintaining change in a balanced environment, in which the exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, the orientation of technological development and institutional change are all in harmony and enhance both current and future potential to meet human needs and aspirations. For many in the field, sustainability is defined through the following interconnected domains or pillars: environment, economic and social, which according to Fritjof Capra is based on the principles of Systems Thinking. Sub-domains of sustainable development have been considered also: cultural, technological and political. While sustainable development may be the organizing principle for sustainability for some, for others, the two terms are paradoxical (i.e. development is inherently unsustainable). Sustainable development is the development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Brundtland Report for the World Commission on Environment and Development (1987) introduced the term of sustainable development.

Sustainability can also be defined as a socio-ecological process characterized by the pursuit of a common ideal.

An ideal is by definition unattainable in a given time and space. However, by persistently and dynamically approaching it, the process results in a sustainable system. The study of ecology believes that sustainability is achieved through the balance of species and the resources within their environment. In order to maintain this equilibrium, available resources must not be depleted faster than resources are naturally generated.

Modern use of the term sustainability is broad and difficult to define precisely. Originally, sustainability meant making only such use of natural, renewable resources that people can continue to rely on their yields in the long term. The concept of sustainability, or Nachhaltigkeit in German, can be traced back to Hans Carl von Carlowitz (1645–1714), and was applied to forestry.Healthy ecosystems and environments are necessary to the survival of humans and other organisms. Ways of reducing negative human impact are environmentally-friendly chemical engineering, environmental resources management and environmental protection. Information is gained from green computing, green chemistry, earth science, environmental science and conservation biology. Ecological economics studies the fields of academic research that aim to address human economies and natural ecosystems.Moving towards sustainability is also a social challenge that entails international and national law, urban planning and transport, supply chain management, local and individual lifestyles and ethical consumerism. Ways of living more sustainably can take many forms from reorganizing living conditions (e.g., ecovillages, eco-municipalities and sustainable cities), reappraising economic sectors (permaculture, green building, sustainable agriculture), or work practices (sustainable architecture), using science to develop new technologies (green technologies, renewable energy and sustainable fission and fusion power), or designing systems in a flexible and reversible manner, and adjusting individual lifestyles that conserve natural resources."The term 'sustainability' should be viewed as humanity's target goal of human-ecosystem equilibrium (homeostasis), while 'sustainable development' refers to the holistic approach and temporal processes that lead us to the end point of sustainability." (305) Despite the increased popularity of the use of the term "sustainability", the possibility that human societies will achieve environmental sustainability has been, and continues to be, questioned—in light of environmental degradation, climate change, overconsumption, population growth and societies' pursuit of unlimited economic growth in a closed system.

Séverine Deneulin

Séverine Marie Paule Deneulin (born 15 January 1974), is a senior lecturer in International Development at the Department of Social and Policy Sciences, University of Bath, and a fellow of the Human Development and Capability Association (HDCA); she is also the HDCA's secretary with a place on the executive council.Deneulin's main areas of research are in development issues and Amartya Sen's capability approach. She is the author of a number of articles and books on the subject including, Wellbeing, justice and development ethics as part of Routledge's human development and capability debates series.

Tim Jackson (economist)

Tim Jackson (born 1957) is a British ecological economist and professor of sustainable development at the University of Surrey. He is the director of the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity (CUSP), a multi-disciplinary, international research consortium which aims to understand the economic, social and political dimensions of sustainable prosperity. Tim Jackson is the author of Prosperity Without Growth (2009 and 2017) and Material Concerns (1996). In 2016, he received the Hillary Laureate for exceptional mid-career Leadership.

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