Sustainability is a challenge the complexity of which seems to overwhelm ­modern science and current dominant social, economic and ideological structures. Policy makers usually expect that solutions be found at our culture’s dominant institutions: science, and the free market economy. However, sceptics argue that these very institutions, science and the free market, are the ones to blame for many of the ecological hardships facing our planet and that, therefore, new ideas and practices should be sought elsewhere – for instance, in non-Western ideas, ways of life, and traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) that may prove superior to current dominant structures of science and technology. Anupam Mishra (born 1948), an Indian author and a Gandhian activist, could serve as such an inspiration for an alternative paradigm.