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A System for Survival

picA System for Survival
Contributing Author
We have in recent years begun to view our planet as an oasis in the university," writes the authors to introduce the relationship of the fundamental ideas and principles of sustainable development and geographic information systems. Sustainable development-raising standards of living worldwide and maintaining them in ways that do not deplete resources or destroy habitat-is therefore a concept with broad appeal.

The issues and ideas surrounding this desire to both use and protect the earth, today and into the future, are based on contemporary science and international law, as well as the insights of philosophy and religion. The goal is to take action to build a sustainable world based on respect for nature, universal human rights, economic justice, and a culture of peace.

Synthesizing the vast amounts of data being collected about natural resources, population, health, education, public safety, and more-al within highly accurate and specific geographic contexts-GIS can help people assess and understand their community and environment, and change policy and practice at all levels, from the individual to the international. A System for Survival: GIS and Sustainable Development describes example of how GIS has been crucial in many democratic governance and civil liberty programs, and serves to help make people more aware of how geographic technologies can play a creative and constructive role as we deal with the monumental challenges humanity faces.


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