Digitalization provides access to an integrated network of unexploited big data with potential benefits for society and the environment. The development of smart systems connected to the internet of things can generate unique opportunities to strategically address challenges associated with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to ensure an equitable, environmentally sustainable, and healthy society. This perspective describes the opportunities that digitalization can provide towards building the sustainable society of the future. Smart technologies are envisioned as game-changing tools, whereby their integration will benefit the three essential elements of the food-water-energy nexus: (i) sustainable food production; (ii) access to clean and safe potable water; and (iii) green energy generation and usage. It then discusses the benefits of digitalization to catalyze the transition towards sustainable manufacturing practices and enhance citizens' health wellbeing by providing digital access to care, particularly for the underserved communities. Finally, the perspective englobes digitalization benefits by providing a holistic view on how it can contribute to address the serious challenges of endangered planet biodiversity and climate change.
Science of the Total Environment, Volume 794, 10 November 2021,