Environment, Development and Sustainability

, Volume 17, Issue 2, pp 315–330 | Cite as

UN decade on education for sustainable development (UNDESD): enabling sustainability in higher education

Article

Abstract

Inspired by the UN decade on education for sustainable development, the Learning City designed an innovative curriculum and pedagogy to enable sustainability learning in a university classroom setting. We provide a brief overview of the project and then detail the classroom in regard to the five features that shape it. We also introduce the two major legacies of the Learning City and detail their relationship to the five features. The relevance of this work extends to many fields beyond sustainability education, including educational research, program evaluation, sustainability, urban policy, social capital, and the emerging field of the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Keywords

Sustainability in higher education Transdisciplinarity and interdisciplinarity Community service learning 

References

  1. Ballantyne, R., & Packer, J. (2009). Introducing a fifth pedagogy: Experience-based strategies for facilitating learning in natural environments. Environmental Education Research, 15(2), 243–262.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bohm, D. (1996). On dialogue. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  3. Brown, J. (2002). The world café: A resource guide for hosting conversations that matter. Mill Valley, California: Whole Systems Associates.Google Scholar
  4. Dippo, D. (2013). Preservice teaching and pedagogies of transformation. In R. McKeown & V. Nolet (Eds.), Schooling for sustainable development in Canada and the United States (pp. 69–78). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Gadotti, M. (2010). Reorienting education practices towards sustainability. Journal of Education for Sustainable Development, 4(2), 203–211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Garnar, A. (2006). Power, action, signs: Between Peirce and Foucault. Transactions of the Charles s. Peirce Society, 42(3), 347–366.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Gross, N. (2009). A pragmatist theory of social mechanisms. American Sociological Review, 74(3), 358–379.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Isaacs, W. (1999). Dialogue and the art of thinking together. London: Currency Doubleday.Google Scholar
  9. Joas, h. (1990). The creativity of action and the intersubjectivity of reason: Mead’s pragmatism and social theory. Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society, 26(2), 165–194.Google Scholar
  10. Joas, H., & Kilpinen, E. (2006). Creativity and society. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.Google Scholar
  11. Lattuca, L. R. (2001). Creating interdisciplinarity: Interdisciplinary research and teaching among college and university faculty. Nashville: Vanderbilt University Press.Google Scholar
  12. Luke, T. W. (2005). Neither sustainable nor development: Reconsidering sustainability in development. Sustainable Development, 13(4), 228–238. doi: 10.1002/sd.284.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Milana, M., & Sørensen, T. B. (2009). Promoting democratic citizenship through non-formal adult education: The case of Denmark. Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 53(4), 347–362.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Minguet, P. A., Martinez-Agut, M. P., Palacios, B., Piň ero, A., & Ull, M. A. (2011). Introducing sustainability into university curricula: An indicator and baseline survey of the views of university teachers at the University of Valencia. Environmental Education Research, 17(2), 145–166.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Moon, J. (2004). A handbook of reflective and experiential learning: Theory and practice. Routledge Falmer: London and New York.Google Scholar
  16. Moore, J. (2004). Living in the basement of the ivory tower: A graduate student’s perspective of participatory action research in universities. Educational Action Research, 12(1), 145–162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Moore, J. (2005). Barriers and pathways to creating sustainability education programs: Moving from rhetoric to reality. Environmental Education Research, 11(5), 537–555.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Nicolescu, B. (1997). The transdisciplinary evolution of the university condition for sustainable development. Presentation at the International Congress Universities’ Responsibilities to Society, International Association of Universities, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand, November 12–14.Google Scholar
  19. Nolet, V. (2013). Teacher education and ESD in the United States: The vision, challenges, and implementation. In R. McKeown & V. Nolet (Eds.), Schooling for sustainable development in Canada and the United States (pp. 53–67). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Palaiologou, I. (2010). The death of a discipline or the birth of a transdiscipline: Subverting questions of disciplinarity within education studies undergraduate courses. Educational Studies, 36(3), 269–282.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Polk, M., & Knutsson, P. (2008). Participation, value rationality and mutual learning in transdisciplinary knowledge production for sustainable development. Environmental Education Research, 14(6), 643–653.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Reyers, B., et al. (2010). Conservation planning as a transdisciplinary process. Conservation Biology, 24(4), 957–965.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Salo, P. (2007).”On the concepts of the Nordic adult education tradition.” Nordic Con.Google Scholar
  24. Senge, P. M. (1990). The fifth discipline: The art and practice of the learning organization. New York: Currency-Doubleday.Google Scholar
  25. UNESCO. (2006). Decade of education for sustainable development. International Implementation Scheme (IIS).Google Scholar
  26. Vanwynsberghe, R., & Herman, A. (2014). Adaptive education: An inquiry-based institution. Manuscript under review.Google Scholar
  27. VanWynsberghe, R., & Moore, J. (2008). Envisioning the classroom as a social movement organization. Policy Futures in Education, 6(3), 298–311.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Wals, A. E. J., & Jickling, B. (2002). “Sustainability” in higher education: From doublethink and newspeak to critical thinking and meaningful learning. Higher Education Policy, 15(2), 121–131.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Waterman, P. (1998). Globalisation, social movements and the new internationalisms. London: Cassell.Google Scholar
  30. Westhues, Kenneth. (1995). The working centre: Experiment in social change. Kitchener, Ont.: Working Centre Publications.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Educational StudiesUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Centre for DialogueSimon Fraser UniversityVancouverCanada

Personalised recommendations