Ecological Modernization

Ecological modernization is a diverse body of literature that has emerged from environmental sociology. It focuses on the institutional response of industrialized countries to environmental challenges. Arthur Mol understands ecological modernization to be the third wave of environmental concern and reform, following from nature conservation and limits to growth approaches. F. H. Buttel sees ecological modernization as “a new, and in many ways improved, synonym for sustainable development” and recognizes the appeal of optimism within ecological modernization, something that he contrasts with the pessimistic connotations of other approaches for “thinking about the problems of metropolitan transformative industry in the North.”

According to Michael Carolan, the ecological modernization approach is said to have attained “near paradigmatic status within socioenvironmental circles,” and Renato Orsato and Stewart Clegg view ...

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