Encyclopedia of Sustainability in Higher Education

2019 Edition
| Editors: Walter Leal Filho

Behavior Change for Sustainable Development

  • Kathleen KlanieckiEmail author
  • Katharina Wuropulos
  • Caroline Persson Hager
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-11352-0_161


Human impact on the planet is intensifying due to rapid globalization, economic and population growth, and changing lifestyles. In addition to technical and regulatory solutions, sustainable development must include a transformation of human consumption behaviors.


Human effects on the environment are so significant that some scholars propose we have entered a new geological epoch called the Anthropocene, where humans are now the dominant driver of earth system processes at a planetary scale (Steffen et al. 2011). Climate change, biodiversity loss, ecosystem degradation, and ocean acidification are undoubtedly caused and accelerated by unsustainable human activity. While humans throughout history have modified the natural environment to meet their needs, human impact on the planet is now exponentially greater due to rapid globalization, economic and population growth, and changing lifestyles (IPCC 2014). Current demands on Earth’s resources far outpace what the...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathleen Klaniecki
    • 1
    Email author
  • Katharina Wuropulos
    • 2
  • Caroline Persson Hager
    • 3
  1. 1.Faculty of SustainabilityLeuphana University LueneburgLueneburgGermany
  2. 2.Faculty of Social SciencesBundeswehr University MunichNeubibergGermany
  3. 3.OsloNorway

Section editors and affiliations

  • Evangelos Manolas
    • 1
  1. 1.Democritus University of ThraceThraceGreece