City Research Online

Sustainability- considering the pillars of sustainability as a theoretical paradigm

Caraher, M. (2008). Sustainability- considering the pillars of sustainability as a theoretical paradigm. In: Pendergast, D. (Ed.), Home economics: referencing the past; creating the future. Proceedings of the XXI International Federation for Home Economics World Congress, July 26-31, 2008, Lucerne, Switzerland. (pp. 55-66). IFHE Switzerland.


The need for a common theoretical framework and underpinning with regards to the use of the term ‘sustainability’ in connection with food is important. Its current use covers a number of different meanings, ranging through economics and food supply systems to agri-food systems. This paper explores the issue of sustainability using a model developed for WHO. Using this as a tool, the impacts of food security and the global food system can be analysed and audited. Key to this are a critique of the global food system and its emphasis on free trade and consumers, the argument is put forward that global trade needs to be regulated to ensure human and environmental health.

Conclusions are drawn for home economic teachers in terms of the role they play in food advocacy. This moves beyond teaching about the food system ‘as-it-is’, to education concerning the background to the food system and how we, as both consumers and citizens, can act and exercise power. The model can be used to both inform teaching practice about sustainability and to frame a response at a school/community level to wider influences in the food system. Education on its own is judged not to be sufficient.

Publication Type: Book Section
Additional Information: Permission from IFHE has been sought, provided and is included as part of the online access.
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Healthcare Services Research & Management > Food Policy
[thumbnail of Sustainability_considering_the_pillars_of_sustainability_as_a_theoretical_paradigm.pdf]
Download (274kB) | Preview


Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login