| Syndromes of Global Change
Syndromes of global change are problems of non-sustainable development that are closely interrelated and appear in specific combinations in different regions of the world. They can be perceived as clusters of ecological, social, economic, and other problems that occur in typical patterns. It can therefore be assumed that they are based on similar processes and linked to global change. (WBGU, 1997; modified by the NCCR North-South 2000, 2004).
Syndromes of global change have become increasingly acute in the 20th century, whereby developing countries and countries of transition are affected most. The mitigation of such syndromes is a vital task for the international community and a precondition for sustainable development. The NCCR North-South has defined a common list of potential core problems for syndromes of global change, on which it is conducting syndrome mitigation research within specific syndrome contexts.
As the syndromes of global change are specific to concrete situations, circumstances or regions, one can also speak of so-called syndrome contexts. These contexts can not be purely defined as geographical or analytical categories, but they have broad societal, economic, political and ecological characteristics. Within one syndrome context, one or more syndromes occur, or may potentially emerge.
As there is a wide range of different syndromes and syndrome contexts, the NCCR North-South focuses its research on the following three syndrome contexts: the urban and peri-urban context, the semi-arid context, and the highland-lowland context.
Click on the image to view an example of syndrome and syndrome context.
The appraisal of three NCCR North-South syndrome contexts and their assumed acuteness in each context in the "Joint Areas of Case Studies" (JACS) has led to the following ranking (X = acute; XX = highly acute; XXX = extremely acute):