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Voluntary Sustainability Standards

Illusions of Progress and a Way Forward

Ulrich Hoffmann and Arpit Bhutani

Sustainability standards, and in particular voluntary sustainability standards (VSS) have become an integral part of facilitating green consumerism and promoting green economy and green growth. While such standards have undoubtedly led to some desirable change in production structures and methods, as well as in improved material, resource and energy efficiency, overall results have remained modest, mostly incremental and far from leading to transformational, sector- or economy-wide changes. It is therefore high time that after some 30 years of increasing use of sustainability standards one takes stock of their achievements and pros and cons. This analysis should however not be confined to a technical review of the progress in improving or perfectioning the standard system and best practice in standard application and use, but primarily focus on a review of the political economy of VSS and their record in reshaping the current largely unsustainable agro-food economy and the situation of farmers. Many, in particular voluntary sustainability standards are now at a crossroads, but instead of realizing the systemic, deep-rooted nature of the crisis and conceiving of much-required reforms most standard advocates continue to focus their activities on improving the functioning of the standard system and emulating or disseminating best standard-compliance practice. Against this background, the book wonders what the illusions and what the reality of VSS have been in recent decades and whether these standards can be made fit for a future, in which sustainability issues are bound to play an even more important and pressing role. As appendix we looked into the relationship between the Corona crisis as one of the many other epidemics which have hit us hard and the future of globalized supply chains, of which VSS are part of.
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Working with and against Shared Curricula

Perspectives from College Writing Teachers and Administrators


Edited by Samantha NeCamp and Connie Kendall Theado

Working with and against Shared Curricula: Perspectives from College Writing Teachers and Administrators explores the complexities surrounding the expanding use of shared curricula—syllabi and assignments intended to work universally, for all teachers and all students within a given writing program. Chapters in this collection offer the experiential accounts and research-based arguments needed to prepare teachers and administrators to respond to calls to scale up writing programs for delivery by contingent instructors, in online courses, or at distant sites. Speaking from a variety of perspectives and institutional locations, these authors grapple with questions increasingly common in writing programs: In what ways do shared curricula forward noble goals, such as reducing workload for teachers or ensuring an equitable educational experience for all?; In what ways do shared curricula undermine teacher efficacy and student learning?; When syllabi and assignments are exported from one location to another, what contexts are gained, lost, or changed in the process? In the end, what emerges from this collection is not a clear or simplified argument either for or against shared curricula and pre-designed courses. Instead, readers gain a nuanced picture of both the affordances and limitations of these instructional modelsfor writing programs, and their potential impacts for teachers and students. By exploring the lived experiences, material conditions, political economies, and ideological conflicts of shared curricula environments for multiple stakeholders, this collection serves as a thoughtful interrogation of scalability in writing instruction.

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Measuring the Effectivity of Environmental Law

Legal Indicators for Sustainable Development

Michel Prieur and Christophe Bastin

This book presents a new method for measuring the effectiveness of national and international environmental law. It is the result of four years of research and experimentation to develop a way to construct legal indicators. The only existing environmental indicators measure only statistical, scientific or economic data.

With legal indicators, governments, parliaments, economic and social actors and environmental NGOs will be able to assess concretely, on a scientific basis, what are the gaps, progress and setbacks in the implementation of international conventions and national laws. The legal indicators will serve as tools for decision-making, in particular to carry out reforms in full knowledge of the facts and not blindly.

The mathematical method used makes it possible, on the basis of a questionnaire highlighting all the legal and institutional stages of the application of legal texts, to provide data highlighting the points to be improved and the strengths of the application of the law.

This update of a first book published in 2018 by the Institut de la Francophonie pour le développement durable (IFDD, French acronym) has been made possible thanks to the support of the Normandy Chair for Peace (CNRS, Normandy Region, Maison de la recherche en Sciences Humaines (MRSH) and the University of Caen - France). A line of research is dedicated to this topic of legal indicators and the Chair of Excellence hopes that this work will be widely disseminated and accessible in open source in English, French and Spanish.

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Mesurer l’effectivité du droit de l’environnement

Des indicateurs juridiques au service du développement durable

Michel Prieur, Christophe Bastin and Ali Mekouar

Cet ouvrage présente une méthode inédite de mesurage de l’effectivité du droit de l’environnement tant national qu’international. Il est le fruit de quatre ans de recherches et d’expérimentations afin de mettre au point la façon de construire des indicateurs juridiques. Les seuls indicateurs existants sur l’environnement ne mesurent que des données statistiques, scientifiques ou économiques.

Grâce à des indicateurs juridiques, les gouvernements, les parlements, les acteurs économiques et sociaux et les ONG d’environnement pourront apprécier concrètement, sur un fondement scientifique, quelles sont les lacunes, les avancées et les régressions dans les modalités d’application des conventions internationales et des lois nationales. Les indicateurs juridiques serviront d’outils d’aide à la décision, notamment pour procéder à des réformes en connaissance de cause et non plus à l’aveuglette.

La méthode mathématique utilisée permet, à partir d’un questionnaire mettant en avant toutes les étapes juridiques et institutionnelles de l’application des textes juridiques, de fournir des données soulignant les points à améliorer et les points forts de l’application du droit.

Cette mise à jour d’un premier ouvrage de 2018 publié par l’Institut de la Francophonie pour le développement durable (IFDD) a été rendue possible grâce à l’appui de la Chaire d’excellence Normandie pour la paix (CNRS, Région Normandie, Maison de la recherche en sciences humaines (MRSH) et de l’Université de Caen - France). Une ligne de recherche est dédiée à cette thématique des indicateurs juridiques et la Chaire d’excellence formule le vœu d’une large diffusion de cet ouvrage accessible en open access en anglais, français et en espagnol.

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Christiane Krumme

Edited by Karlheinz Muscheler

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States of Nature and Social Contracts

The Metaphors of the Liberal Order

Kevin Dooley

This book examines the most significant metaphors of modern political philosophy: the state of nature and the social contract. Each of the main chapters is dedicated to the political theory of the different social contract thinkers and the ways they articulated the uniquely liberal view of equality and freedom. The last chapter, unique to most books that explore the social contract, highlights the recent challenges to these views. It is this balance between accepted contractarian ideas and their critiques that makes this book a unique contribution to the field of political philosophy.

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Edited by Nicholas Brownlees

This volume examines the determining role of context in the production and reception of news texts from the seventeenth century until the first half of the twentieth century. The context is understood as historical, social, political, professional, textual and material, with chapters focusing on how such a context or contexts influenced the language and reception of the news texts in question. The contributors to the volume are experts in their field of research and have employed a variety of methodological approaches in their analyses of the interrelationship between context and historical news discourse. These include historical pragmatics, historical discourse analysis, critical discourse analysis, appraisal theory, frame theory, and corpus linguistics.
The volume is divided into three sections: British News Contexts, International News Contexts,  and Advertising Contexts. The first two sections offer a wide-ranging examination of how context has determined the writing and understanding of news in both the British and international domain. The third section in the volume on advertising contexts and discourse is not just justified by the fundamental importance of advertising in the development and history of the press but also by the social and political relevance of the topics examined in the advertisements. These include studies on mental health and asylum advertisements, runaway slaves classified advertisements, and embedded nationalistic content and ideology in Irish newspaper advertisements of the 1930s.
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Edited by Judith Lange, Eva Rothenberger and Martin Schubert