service research to advance sustainable development

Egality is developing service capabilities
to help practically achieve sustainable development
by adopting wise policy choices
using beginners' mind / experience
Peoples, nations and states have fundamental roles in the pursuit of sustainable development. They are endowed with rights such as the right of peoples to self-determination and territorial integrity. Corresponding to those rights are also responsibilities, as prominently emphasized  in the Banjul Charter of 1981 (also known as the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights). One of the wisest choices of peoples of the world has been adopting the pursuit of sustainable development as a fundamental priority, as emphasized at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in 1992. This choice of peoples has in turn given rise to a binding duty on states under international law to pursue sustainable development.  Current policy interests:  innovative ventures for Native American peoples in the field of publishing, reducing illegal immigration by informing source peoples (how their economic prospects may now be better at home), and the Sichuan Education Project.
Local governments and quasi-governmental organizations have key responsibilities in delivering needed services to people.  Their finances are under strain.  Innovative thinking from an aggressively interdisciplinary perspective can develop alternatives which are worth considering.  For example, many mass transportation systems are in financial difficulty.  Innovative approaches can combine different elements:  partial service cutback by reducing frequencies on some routes, modest (if any) fare increases, negotiating with governmental agencies debt moratoria (in particular with the federal government) perhaps in return for residual claim on future net operating income, recouping costs and developing stable ridership by selective aggressive pricing (e.g., negotiate with schools to pay for student passes priced very modestly above true marginal cost), attention to operating details (e.g., buses on schedules which allow for non-aggressive acceleration and deceleration), and highly selective new infrastructure investment.
Traditional commercial corporations have played a big role in the recent history of western money-based economies. And those economies have had a big influence on how well we achieve sustainable development.  Since corporations are social constructs whose purpose for existing is to advance societal goals, the traditional commercial corporate sector therefore has as a top priority advancing the pursuit of sustainable development.   The mantra popularized by Milton Friedman in 1970, that the only social responsibility of business is financial profit, represents a better objective than some (e.g., management self-dealing).  However, to the extent pursuing merely financial profit endangers society's pursuit of sustainable development, that mantra is more a reason to redesign our notions of corporate responsibility than an appropriate guide for corporate conduct.   A good way to gauge corporate conduct combines both basic principles and case studies.  Current research interest:  conceptual foundations for corporations advancing the pursuit of sustainable development, practical further steps ostensibly in the corporate interest, and guidance for situations where there are difficult tradeoffs for leadership.

Universities and colleges have a special responsibility in promoting sustainable development.  Their curriculum influences students' thinking, and those students have a key role in actualizing a better future.  Educational institutions also have a special opportunity to embody best practices, by applying what they teach to their own operations. Current interest:  empowering students, e.g. to be able to craft individualized service courses.
One key issue facing states (sovereign wealth funds or foreign exchange reserves), commercial corporations (retained earnings) and universities (endowments) is how to raise funds and how to wisely allocate investments among their own core responsibilities / opportunities and alternative investments.  Social responsibility of investments is key.  There are ahead-of-the-curve opportunities to bridge seemingly disparate objectives.  
(For a brief introduction to university endowments, with relevance to other organizations and states as well, please see  part 1 p. 5 and part 2 pp. 5-6.)
& last, but most certainly not least (the final element in a list is perhaps the most prominent): 
NGOs and community organizations spring up to fill in the gaps between traditional power structures and responsibilities toward society.  They can achieve disproportionate results with financial resources by combining highly motivated human capital in a micro-entrepreneurial fashion.  (For some thoughts on putting to good use the very large amount of food which is discarded, see "shelter pudding".)