Formally, GSSD can be characterized as a computer implementation method for facilitation identification and storage of data and the communication of information among a plurality of geographically separated entities working to solve problems related to global sustainability. The knowledge strategy consists of:
1. Organizing knowledge and data related to global sustainability problems into several hierarchies of interrelated sub-concepts stored on several computer systems interconnected by a number of communication links;
2. Each sub-concept of hierarchies belongs to a category and has at least one attribute and one sub-attribute;
a. defining the connectivity between data among and within hierarchies of interrelated sub-concepts stored on a plurality of computer systems that are already storing data;
b. providing a mapping between the data related to each of the sub-concepts and computer systems of storing data;
3. Providing access of plurality of entities, to data within any of sub-concepts stored in pluralities of remote locations in response to mapping specifications; and
4. Providing access to data and information of hierarchies of interrelated sub-concepts on any computer systems from any sub-concepts according to defined connectivity and in to mapping provided by system functions.
Each substantive domain or issue area is framed in terms of:
Consisting of issue-specific materials
Covering activities, as well as problems & solutions
Representing the intersections of particular slices and rings
Referring to key sub-topics or subjects within each cell
Consists of a strategy and mechanism for locating, integrating, annotating, and updating knowledge; an adaptive method for representing and organizing knowledge; and a set of flexible functionality enabling navigation, searching and browsing, and targeted management.