Clive L. Spash
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Integration of social, ecological and economic knowledge
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Instead of ecological economics offering an integrative approach, it was founded on vague and unstructured appeals to transdisciplinarity, interdisciplinarity, holism, pluralism and eclecticism. In this chapter, the approaches to integration critically reviewed by Kapp are discussed and brought into a current social ecological economic perspective with specific focus on dialectics (from Hegel to Engels and Marx to Georgescu-Roegen), analogy and metaphor (which are distinguished), unity of science and finally multi-/trans-/inter-disciplinarity. The argument is made that interdisciplinarity is key but requires insight into a process as to how it might proceed. The role of conceptualisation is highlighted and Kapp's proposal for 'common-denominator' concepts is explained and explored. The potential for and barriers to integration are reflected upon throughout and summarised in the conclusions.

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