A large number of documents regarding the role of higher education in the creation of a sustainable civil society were written during the last 50 years within the framework of international and world
conferences: Talloires (1990), Halifax (1991), Rio de Janeiro (1992), Swansea (1993) and so on.
Literature is also integrated by a high number of good practices developed in a series of universities around the world. These chose the challenge of sustainability as one of the main objectives to be
pursued in the short, medium and long term. At the same time, universities, colleges, research institutes and agencies are creating networks, computing platforms and partnerships in order to exchange
experiences, share achieved results and improve opportunities for cooperation and research (SALOMONE, 2013).
Higher education has one across-the-board objective when taking the sustainability challenge, that is educate and train all future teachers, decision makers, students, professionals, experts, company
employees and common people to embrace sustainable and environment-aware approaches, behaviors, lifestyles and consumption patterns. The world of higher education shall commit especially to creating environmental basic teaching processes and promoting practices related to environment ethics.
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La résilience apparait comme un concept innovant de développement, dans le sillage des vulnérabilités dimensionnelles (environnementale, économique, sociale) et la lutte contre la pauvreté et la faim. Sa résonance est particulière dans le contexte actuel de mondialisation, où les chocs liés à la brutalité des crises financières et aux catastrophes naturelles, ne laissent plus indifférent. Le dernier rapport sur le développement humain (PNUD, 2014) questionne la pérennisation du progrès humain en lien avec la réduction des vulnérabilités et le renforcement de la résilience. Les capabilités (Sen, 1992, 1999) constituant aussi une réponse aux vulnérabilités, comment s’articulent-elles à la résilience, et selon quelle stratégie de politiques publiques pour un développement humainement durable?
Globally, climate change will bring “harder rains in a hotter climate” (Berg, et al., 2013). For African farmers, it will bring more erratic rainfall, more frequent and severe droughts in dry lands and savanna areas, and shifts in weather patterns that will alter the timing and length of cropping seasons (Niang, et al., 2014). Building resilience, enhancing climate change preparedness, and mainstreaming climate sensitivity need to become integral components of all agricultural and sustainable development planning in Africa (Hassan, 2010). Science must play a greater role in guarding against expected food shortages in Africa; many calls to that effect have been made in international discussions, including those hosted by United Nations bodies (Pearson, 2004; Poliakoff, 2011). Put simply, African scientists need to act quickly to re-do much of the existing, as well as new science about crops and livestock, the environment, and livelihoods for changed climate scenarios. Science based solutions are only considered credible by intended users if these are properly peer reviewed for the scientific merit.
So far, most of the peer reviewed climate change science about and for Africa has been undertaken by research programs funded and led by affluent countries; the resulting papers have generally been published in acclaimed journals located in developed countries. Thousands of journals address climate-related issues relevant to Africa, developed countries. Thousands of journals address climate-related issues relevant to Africa, but far too few such publications are actually located in the countries being discussed. Even African scientists tend to publish their peer reviewed science in the journals located in or managed by developed countries. Of the 450 online African journals, more than two-thirds originate from two countries: Nigeria and South Africa (Figure 1). Only nine other countries in the continent publish more than five open-access journals. This typifies the ecosystem of climaterelated peer reviewed scientific expertise within Africa.
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L’approche par les capabilités originellement développée par l’économiste A. Sen (1999) et la philosophe M. Nussbaum (2000) est de plus en plus utilisée ces dernières années pour refonder les analyses du développement durable (noté DD). Cette approche a radicalement redéfini le développement et sa pratique depuis le milieu des années 90. L’approche par les capabilités permet de re-conceptualiser non seulement l’évaluation du bien-être mais aussi les enjeux de la justice sociale dans la perspective du DD.