Keywords: environmental technology, sustainability, continuous innovation, sociocultural-ecological systems, indigenous peoples, sustainable development, Mexico, economic performance, sustainable economy, rainforests, ecosystems
Technology, innovation and sustainability in sociocultural-ecological systems: a case in Mexico
The use of technology when discussing sustainability has widely been praised. However, people's decision to employ technology is what will determine its role in addressing sustainability concerns or in acting as a negative force behind a development trend. This paper examines when technology is used to enhance a sustainable development, and enquiries into the role technology has had in an indigenous subsistence-type community in Mexico. This indigenous group has increasingly supported their livelihoods and their struggle for survival by adopting new processes and technologies in their everyday life, as the result of making innovation a capability in their organisation. The adoption of technology has been one key factor for having improved the well being, the environmental and economic performance of the community. In addition, the analysis and assessment of changes in the dynamic and complex ecosystem of the Lacandona rainforest have provided the community ample sources for innovation.