The role of sustainability science in addressing Africa’s sustainable development challenges and priorities: A bibliometric survey

Co-Designing Science in Africa: First steps in assessing the sustainability science approach on the ground所収
Chapter: 2
cover image

Chapter 2 presents a general overview of the academic landscape of sustainability science research in Africa and summarizes the challenges and knowledge gaps for sustainable development in Africa. The chapter sets out to examine the current trends and patterns of sustainability research and how they can contribute to addressing sustainable development African challenges through an extensive literature review, a meta-analysis of academic literature and key reports on SDGs. Based on the academic landscape and the analysis of SDG research in Africa, it is apparent that three SDGs − poverty (SDG1), gender equality (SDG5) and climate action (SDG13) − account for 50% of the entire literature landscape over the last 10 years. Literature addressing more than one SDG is increasing. Although currently these studies represent less than 20% of the total published literature, they show a positive trend, growing faster compared to the 6% of the literature landscape. The results of SDG inter-linkage analysis in Africa show that both the strongest linkages and largest coverage lie within goals related to poverty (SDG 1), gender equality (SDG 5) and climate action (SDG 13), while the weakest linkages and smallest theme coverage lie within goals related to affordable and clean energy (SDG 7) and responsible consumption and production (SDG 12).