SERI's methods are based on previous work carried out by Friends of the Earth and the Wuppertal Institute under the auspices of Friends of the Earth's Sustainable Europe Campaign. All methods contribute to the overall goal of identifying ways to substantially reduce the use of natural resources of industrial societies.

The concept of environmental space serves as one of SERI’s main methodological frames. Environmental space starts with the assumption that there are limits to the biophysical capacity of the ecosystem. The environment can only absorb a limited amount of waste and emissions and can only provide a limited amount of resources for human use. Environmental space also argues that - within these limits - every individual has the same right to use an equal amount of environmental space. This principle of equity is the ethical basis of environmental space and links the quest for less environmental degradation with the equally urgent cause of global justice.

Research areas

Physical accounting

Policy-oriented application of physical accounting systems (material flow accounting and land use accounting) and physical indicators for environmental sustainability.

Multi-Criteria-Decision-Aid (MCDA)

Taking into account the environmental-economic-social integration, inter-regional spatial links and trade-offs as well as uncertainty in decision processes concerning sustainable development

Related themes and project areas
Objectives, indicators and scenarios for SD
Global Resource Use


Project area physical accounting:

Project area MCDA:

Publications of SERI members

Fritz Hinterberger
Ines Omann


Have a nice day - Your SERI-Team.

last update 01-Apr-2004