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The Encyclopedia of the UN Sustainable Development Goals by Springer Nature 

Diogo Almeida Alves was a contributor to the world´s largest editorial project in the field of sustainable development with a chapter regarding the Goal 17 – Partnerships for the Goals, with the title “Integrated Lessons on the 4 Elements of Nature & Key Geostrategic Sectors”. 

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Not very far away from today, the world’s population will be roughly 10 billion. Mankind is more and more aware of its negative impact on the planet and of the need for a sustainable change. Therefore, each individual, organization, or state can no longer run away from the responsibility of acting upon it.

Furthermore, with the available knowledge and technology, it is not an option to place that burden in the future generations to deal with. Hence, what kind of contribution can science, technology, and innovation provide to the sustainable development of mankind and the planet Earth? Is the answer to this question, its intricacies, complexity, and dynamics makes the binomial between technology and sustainability so relevant and so decisive?

In this entry for Springer Nature’s Encyclopedia of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, an innovative approach will be presented to the correlation between these two pivotal fields: on the one hand, by presenting a set of opportunities, threats, and trends of sectors of activity linked to the four elements of nature (fire, water, air, and earth), on the other hand, by voicing a set of practical cases that illustrate integrated takeaways of collaboration, innovation, and leadership in key geostrategic sectors of our present and future.

Therefore, the smartest way to come to conclusions that allow us to change habits and behaviors, whether individual or collective, is through practical and real examples, being this the essence of this entry. Learning with the past, reinforcing the need for working sustainable development frameworks, and placing science, technology, and innovation at the service of mankind are absolutely crucial. It is not even a choice. It is the only way forward.

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