Purpose and content Since the late 1980s, sustainable development has garnered much interest and policy initiatives in both the public and private sector. However, sustainable development objective often lack a firm grasp of the origins and true meaning of the concept. An understanding of a holistic perspective on development. Evolution of sustainable development through the perspective of international conferences and publications often referred to in discussions of sustainability. Introduces the challenges that are frequently confronted to conceptualize sustainable development in different disciplinary lenses. Discussion of the need to adopt a holistic and integrative approach to the design of policies and initiatives aimed at achieving more sustainable forms of development. 2.2 The Emergence of Sustainable Development Gained formal international recognition at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. However, it is possible to trace the roots of the concept back to the 1950s/1960s, when developed nations were becoming increasingly aware that the local or regional environment was being stressed by rapid industrialization. 2.2.1 The Formation of Environmental Movements The London Smog of 1952–1953 illustrated the dangerous effects of pollution (Bell and Davis 2001; Davis et al. 2002), Rachael Carson’s book Silent Spring in 1962 focused on the negative impacts of industrial activities, such as DDT and argued from users to continue their development. “Silent Spring altered a balance of power in the world. No one since would be able to sell pollution as the necessary underside of progress so easily or uncritically” (Hynes 1989, p. 3). Two classic publications which supported this movement were “The Tragedy of the Commons” (Hardin 1968) and the Population Bomb (Ehrlich 1968). Hardin (1968) highlighted private actors to exploit the public/environmental commons. Ehrlich (1968) expressed concern that the appetite of a growing population may not be met by a fixed resource base—a similar argument to that made in Limits to Growth (Meadows et al. 1972). The latter report was novel in its use of computer simulations to illustrate potentially disastrous future consequences of the continuation of current production and consumption patterns.