Stewardship is an ethic that embodies the responsible planning and management of resources. The concepts of stewardship can be applied to the environment and nature, economics, health, property, information, theology,cultural resources etc.
Stewardship was originally made up of the tasks of a domestic steward, from stiġ (house, hall) and weard, (ward, guard, guardian, keeper). Stewardship in the beginning referred to the household servant’s duties for bringing food and drink to the castle’s dining hall. Stewardship responsibilities were eventually expanded to include the domestic, service and management needs of the entire household.
Commercial stewardship tends to the domestic and service requirements of passengers on ships, trains, airplanes or guests in restaurants. This concept of stewardship continues to be referenced within these specific categories.
Stewardship is now generally recognized as the acceptance or assignment of responsibility to shepherd and safeguard the valuables of others.
^Chapin, F. Stuart III, Gary P. Kofinas, and Carl Folke (eds). 2009. Principles of Ecosystem Stewardship: Resilience-Based Natural Resource Management in a Changing World. Springer. ISBN978-0387730325.
^Hendee, John C. and Chad P. Dawson. 2002. Wilderness Management: Stewardship and Protection of Resources and Values (3rd Edition). Fulcrum Publishing. ISBN978-1555918552.
^Peter Block, Peter. 2013. Stewardship: Choosing Service Over Self-Interest (2nd Edition). Berrett-Koehler Publishers. ISBN978-1609948221.
^Curtis, Gregory. 2012. The Stewardship of Wealth, + Website: Successful Private Wealth Management for Investors and Their Advisors. Wiley. ISBN978-1118321867.
^Robinson, Joe Sam, M. Sami Walid, Aaron C. M. Barth (Editors). 2012. Toward Healthcare Resource Stewardship: Health Care Issues, Costs, and Access. Nova Science. ISBN978-1621001829.
^Meidenger, Errol E. 1998. Laws and Institutions in Cross-Boundary Stewardship. pp. 87-110 In: Knight, Richard L., and Peter Landres (Editors). Stewardship Across Boundaries. Island Press. ISBN978-1559635158.
^National Academy of Sciences Committee on Ensuring the Utility and Integrity of Research Data in a Digital Age. 2009. Ensuring the Integrity, Accessibility, and Stewardship of Research Data in the Digital Age. National Academies Press. ISBN9780309147828.
The NOAA Planet Stewards Education Project (PSEP) is an example of an environmental stewardship program in the United States to advance scientific literacy especially in areas that conserve, restore, and protect human communities and natural resources in the areas of climate, ocean, and atmosphere. It includes professional teachers of students of all ages and abilities, and informal educators who work with the public in nature and science centers, aquaria, and zoos. The project began in 2008 as the NOAA Climate Stewards Project. Its name was changed to NOAA Planet Stewards Educational Project in 2016.