New BONUS RETURN Publication: How is the term 'eco-technology' used in the research literature?
The term ‘ecotechnology’ has been used since the early 1970s to describe combinations of practices relating to the environment and technological intervention. Despite its common usage, there seems to be little consensus on its practical meaning. This article sets out a conceptual framework for the term, and proposes a definition of it.
In order to better define the term, we conducted a systematic review with a thematic synthesis of all definitions of the term. We searched a suite of bibliographic databases to collate literature referring to the term ‘ecotechnology’ in various ways. All explicit definitions were extracted from articles and were critically appraised to identify ‘rich’ and ‘broad’ definitions. Using thematic synthesis, we generate a conceptual framework for definitions of the term ‘ecotechnology’ based on themes that emerge across all explicit definitions. We test this conceptual model using examples of ecotechnology identified from the articles relating to carbon and nutrients. We identified 1221 articles referring to the term ‘ecotechnology’ across 9 bibliographic databases, of which 657 were unique articles. Of the 77 carbon and nutrients articles providing definitions, almost half used the term ‘ecotechnology’ as a buzzword.
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Authors: Neal Haddaway; Jennifer McConville; Mikolaj Piniewski
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