Seven Theses on Sustainability in Austrian Landscape Research
The Project "From information to knowledge" (Von der Information zum Wissen) generated seven theses out of the "Austrian National Research Programme ARL (Kulturlandschaftsforschung)". Heidi Dumreicher and Bettina Kolb analysed the content of the research reports (40 scientific reports, 20489 words) based on the bibliometric method BibTechMon, combined with the techniques of objective hermeneutics.
Thesis 1: Future
Sustainability research deals with the perspective of future ways of life and considers "to protect and to maintain" as basic values.
Thesis 2: Causality
Sustainability research has a larger view than the cause-effect-theorem of natural sciences and sets the context of a more complex notion of reality based understanding.
Thesis 3: Idyllic Nature, Demiurgical Man
The concept of nature as whole is an underlying concept in sustainability research as well as the concept of "man as a creating individual".
Thesis 4: Spaces of Possibilities ("Möglichkeitsräume")
Sustainability research is based on the idea that man/woman disposes of spaces of possibilities for his or her actions; but it tends to overestimate and overrate the possibilities of decision making by the singular individual and underestimates the societal context and the constraints of value systems, of culture and politics.
Thesis 5: Localisation ("Verortung")
Sustainability is related to place and space and shows conflicts of usage by the example of common living places.
Thesis 6: Complexity
The integrative approach of sustainability research creates a compatible research methodology: interdisciplinarity, transdisciplinarity and thereby team research.
Thesis 7: New Research Questions
Sustainability research takes up new research fields: this research reveals latent aspects that have not yet been fully explored and are therefore a challenge for science.
The study "From Information to Knowledge" was carried out by Oikodrom as part of the research programme "Sustainable development of Austrian landscapes and regions" which is a cooperative initiative of the Austrian federal government, the state governments and several municipalities, initiated and coordinated by the Federal Ministry of Science. ALR works out the scientific basis for a sustainable development of the Austrian landscape and regions and manages fields of research from biodiversity and quality of life, to genesis and transformation of (cultural) landscapes and rural development.
Bibliography: Dumreicher, Heidi (Hg.): Von der Information zum Wissen, Die Forschungslandschaft der Nachhaltigkeit aus bibliometrischer und hermeneutischer Sicht, Das Beispiel österreichischer Kulturlandschaftsforschung, Bundesministerium für Bildung, Wissenschaft und Kultur, Wien 2005, ISBN 3-85224-228,9