Three pillars of sustainability: in search of conceptual origins

  title={Three pillars of sustainability: in search of conceptual origins},
  author={Ben Purvis and Yong Mao and Darren Robinson},
  journal={Sustainability Science},
The three-pillar conception of (social, economic and environmental) sustainability, commonly represented by three intersecting circles with overall sustainability at the centre, has become ubiquitous. With a view of identifying the genesis and theoretical foundations of this conception, this paper reviews and discusses relevant historical sustainability literature. From this we find that there is no single point of origin of this three-pillar conception, but rather a gradual emergence from… Expand

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