Voedselproductie in de droogste gebieden van onze planeet is altijd al moeilijk geweest, maar in de afgelopen decennia is dit probleem uitgegroeid tot een ernstige voedselcrisis. Gebieden met een zeer droog klimaat zoals de Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) worden steeds meer geconfronteerd met de uitputting van ondergrondse zoetwaterbronnen, de toenemende schaarste van fossiele meststof en extremere klimaatomstandigheden. Met als gevolg dat het voedsel van elders moet komen, vaak van ver, per gekoelde luchtvracht. …


Creativity is not limited to the humanities and the arts, but can be involved in anything. Before anything else, let’s take a step back and ask ourselves what creativity and being creative really means. Defining creativity has been much debated in scholarly research and depending on who you believe there may not be a definite meaning at all — but generally, we can understand creativity to mean using our imagination to make or think of something new.

There are many different ways to stimulate creativity: brainstorming, making vision boards, mind mapping, word association…

Usually, these exercises are used for object-related…


“Starting to work with Except was a love-in-the-times-of-Covid kind of a situation”, smiles Eranda Janku. A fresh addition to the team, Eranda took up the role of urban and spatial planner. She bridges her professional and academic experience to come up with improved theoretical and practical tools for researchers and planners. The intersection of strategic planning with design thinking is where she feels most comfortable professionally, enjoying to apply co-creative approaches to complex policies and systems. …


A charcoal drawing of a rainbow, with a writing “The Tomorrow Times: News about the future today”
A charcoal drawing of a rainbow, with a writing “The Tomorrow Times: News about the future today”

The latest happenings show us that people, companies, cities, and entire countries are moving forward, realizing the importance of this planet where we live, our only home. In this edition, we celebrate holistic approaches and examples of goodwill which show us that another economy and society is not only possible but already thriving. From regenerative agriculture that stores CO2 through inclusive cities that invest in nature-based solutions to systems that ensure health in low-income countries, all in this edition of the Tomorrow Times.

Stay curious, keep up to date, and get inspired, all in a quick read.

Follow these periodical…


When Jacob Verhaart was little, his favorite word was “why?”. That condition never got better.

A portrait of a white man in glasses against a purple background, with writings “Except Integrated Sustainability”
A portrait of a white man in glasses against a purple background, with writings “Except Integrated Sustainability”
At Except Integrated Sustainability, Jacob Verhaart takes the role of industrial ecologist and head of the research team.

Jacob is Except’s Head of Research. An industrial ecologist and engineer, Jacob knows everything about energy and material flows, urban metabolism, impact and life cycle assessment, and the circular economy, with a particular love for building systems and sustainable building practices. He likes to get to know as much as there is to know about sustainability and translate that into concrete solutions for improving the world.

Jacob sees working in sustainability as an interesting technical challenge that is also a meaningful way to contribute to…


This year’s Doomsday Clock, a metaphor of how close humanity is to doom developed by the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, shows that catastrophe is creeping ever-close. The 100 seconds score beats the Cold War nuclear rough-and-tumble and continues the freefall that started in the 2010s.

Doomsday Clock’s verdict for 2020 was closer than ever due to increased threats of sustainability and cybersecurity.
Doomsday Clock’s verdict for 2020 was closer than ever due to increased threats of sustainability and cybersecurity.
Fluctuations of the Doomsday Clock since its creation in 1947. Image source

The Science and Security Board of the Bulletin, who act as a jury for the Doomsday Clock, establishes nuclear threats and climate change as the main reason for their decision to move the clock ‘closer than ever’. Yet the Board also cited a fascinating and seemingly unobvious threat multiplier factor: ‘cyber-enabled information warfare, that undercuts…


As a result of the fossil water crisis, population increase, prosperity increase, and slow sector growth, exacerbated by looming climate change, the domestic agricultural sector in the GCC is set for an expiration date. With food being a primary necessity, food security is a core element to the creation of a resilient society. The world’s arid regions are struggling to maintain food security in an unfavorable environment. We witnessed these issues during our project in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and now aim to put them in the broader narrative of growing food in arid regions.

Growing food locally is a systemic change that can contribute to the sustainability of the food supply chain.

Worsening factors…

In Saudi Arabia, only…


Pivotal news stories on systemic sustainability from around the world. the Tomorrow Times is a monthly world news digest by Except Integrated Sustainability, a consultancy with a systemic view on sustainability challenges. Stay curious, keep up to date, and get inspired, all in a quick read.

Boy watching over with his binoculars, with a writing “The Tomorrow Times: News about the future today”
Boy watching over with his binoculars, with a writing “The Tomorrow Times: News about the future today”

In this edition, we talk about how sustainability can be approached with systemic frameworks. Read the latest news about transformative future scenarios, inspiring partnerships, circular initiatives, how data-based tools can change the world, and much more.

Energy & Environment


While society is struggling with the Corona pandemic, bananas are facing their own, a fungus called Foc-TR4.

It is not the first time that bananas face a serious threat. In 1950, the pathogen Foc-R1 brought the common banana to near extinction. The only surviving production crop was the Cavendish, due to its fungus-resistant genes. This seedless banana was quickly planted across the globe, replacing its diseased counterparts. This single variety is, to this day, the only banana most of us know and love.

Being able to rely on a resistant species is a good thing, but not entirely. While the…


Paper vs. Digital
Paper vs. Digital
Comparing the environmental footprint of digital and paper copies is context-dependent. Image source

“Go paperless, save trees”. Is that really the case? According to this popular motto, documents in digital versions are environmentally sounder than their old-school, paper counterparts.

It may be easy to think so since we’re quite aware of the link between a tree and our notebook. Yet the largely hidden life cycle of electronic devices, from production through powering to disposal, adds up to their environmental impact. Accounting for the supply chain of electronic appliances may well disqualify digital as the ‘greener alternative’. …

Except Integrated Sustainability

A multidisciplinary team that creates better futures by applying systems thinking to solve complex sustainability challenges.

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