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Evaluating the concept of environmentally-sound technology for knowledge management system design

Malin, Nathan James (2002) Evaluating the concept of environmentally-sound technology for knowledge management system design. Honours thesis, Murdoch University.

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Abstract

Environmentally-sound technology (EST) as a concept is poorly understood ten years after the use of the term in Agenda 21. Subsequently internet based knowledge management systems are under-developed in their ability to assist transfer of information relating to EST.

This study focused initially on a review of EST in relation to Ecological Sustainability principles and the contrasting value systems of Environmental and Ecological Economics. Drawing on this context, the strategic programme of the principal protagonist for international EST transfer, the United Nations Environment Programme-International Environmental Technology Centre (UNEP-IETC), was evaluated. Central to the UNEP-IETC strategic programme is the transfer of EST related information through internet based databases and knowledge management systems.

This study found that UNEP-IETC have the potential to deliver a dual strategy for EST transfer, including both "incremental" supply driven and "transformative" citizen demand driven strategies. The focus of UNEP-IETC continues to be based on servicing and expanding the role of the market in "incremental" EST transfer rather than servicing the involvement of citizens and community in defining appropriate technologies for their local to global context. The partnership of UNEP-IETC with the Environmental Technology Centre (ETC) and the development of the Cities as Sustainable-Ecosystems (CASE) concept offer potential for an emerging "transformative" strategy.

Both the UNEP-IETC managed maESTro database and prototype ESTIS knowledge management system were evaluated and recommendations made with regard to improving transfer of information in relation to ESTs internationally. The ESTIS concept offers real potential for local community and citizen involvement in driving technology development and transfer from a local to global scale.

Publication Type: Thesis (Honours)
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Environmental Science
Notes: A digital copy of this thesis is not available. Your library can request a copy from Murdoch University Library via Document Delivery. A fee applies to this service.
Supervisor: Ho, Goen
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/38439
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