The grand challenge

Humanity is impacting the planet in countless ways. At the same time, humans are fundamentally dependent on the biosphere's ability to maintain and support our development.

The overall aim for GEDB research

is to understand globalization in relation to the biosphere and its limitations, with a focus on various economic aspects. We do so by integrating social, economic and ecological perspectives and data in our research.

The research themes spans the finance sector, the food system, antimicrobial resistance and the role of biodiversity for human health.


New research frontiers for people and planet

A sustainable future requires a better understanding of the relationship between the economy, societal development and the living planet. GEDB’s research has two main themes: Biosphere Finance and Global Health and Biosphere Stewardship.


The Industrial Revolution was a turning point in human history. In its wake, “the great acceleration” of human activity and human-driven global environmental change

took off in the middle of the 20th Century, with a rapid expansion in population, knowledge, wellbeing and prosperity as a result. While this has delivered tremendous benefits for billions of people, human activities have now grown to a scale where they play a significant role in shaping the dynamics of the Earth System as a whole, matching the great forces of nature.

A growing number of scientists therefore suggest we have entered a new geological epoch called the Anthropocene. This new epoch reflects a biosphere in which humanity and nature are truly intertwined.

One of the grand challenges of the Anthropocene is to continue development in a way that enables existing and future generations to benefit from this development.

A core task in this context is therefore to provide opportunities for prosperous development within the frames set by the capacity of the biosphere to sustain it. This calls for novel ways of looking at the world and how it is interlinked.

At GEDB we wish to perform science for change through frontier interdisciplinary research in largely unexplored areas searching for critical connections, causalities and new discoveries and at the same time engage with relevant stakeholders and actors in new forms of collaboration for concrete action.

Read our reports

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