The Seven Degrees of Relevance: Why Should Real-World Environmental Attorneys Care Now About Sustainable Development Policy?
Ruhl, J. B.
This article explores the evolution of the concept of "sustainable development" through what I suggest are the "seven degrees" of relevance of legal conceptualizations: (1) translation of concept into norm; (2) uncontestability of the norm; (3) intolerance of violation of the norm; (4) demand for fulfillment of the norm; (5) translation of the norm as policy goal; (6) policy consequences based on the norm; (7) translation into hard law to apply. I suggest that, at the time of the writing (1998), sustainable development was stuck on level five.