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Resource nexus perspectives towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Nature Sustainabilityvolume 1pages737743 (2018) | Download Citation


Debate around increasing demand for natural resources is often framed in terms of a ‘nexus’, which is perhaps at risk of becoming a buzz word. A nexus between what? Over what scales? And what are the consequences of such a nexus? This article analyses why readers should care about the nexus concept in relation to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We discuss a five-nodes definition and propose perspectives that may lead to a reload of climate policy with buy-in from supply-chain managers and resource-rich developing countries. Our research perspectives address modelling approaches and scenarios at the interface of bio-physical inputs and the human dimensions of security and governance.

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Author information


  1. Bartlett School of Environment, Energy and Resources, University College London, London, UK

    • Raimund Bleischwitz
    •  & Catalina Spataru
  2. Institute for Sustainable Resources, University College London, London, UK

    • Raimund Bleischwitz
  3. Energy Institute, University College London, London, UK

    • Catalina Spataru
  4. Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance, University of Massachusetts Boston, Boston, USA

    • Stacy D. VanDeveer
  5. International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, Laxenburg, Austria

    • Michael Obersteiner
  6. Leiden University, Institute of Environmental Sciences CML, Leiden, The Netherlands

    • Ester van der Voet
  7. UNC Greensboro, Department of Geography, Environment, and Sustainability, Greensboro, USA

    • Corey Johnson
  8. National University of Singapore, Energy Studies Institute, Singapore, Singapore

    • Philip Andrews-Speed
  9. Columbia University, SIPA Center on Global Energy Policy, New York, USA

    • Tim Boersma
  10. Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Potsdam, Germany

    • Holger Hoff
  11. PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague, The Netherlands

    • Detlef P. van Vuuren
  12. Utrecht University, Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development, Utrecht, The Netherlands

    • Detlef P. van Vuuren


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Competing interests

The authors declare no competing interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Raimund Bleischwitz.

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