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Sustainability Science

A Multidisciplinary Approach

image of Sustainability Science
Sustainability science is an academic discipline that emerged in response to threats to the sustainability of the global environment. Its purpose is to help build a sustainable society by developing solutions to climate change, the exhaustion of resources, ecological destruction and other environmental crises that threaten the future of humanity. Sustainability science seeks comprehensive, integrated solutions to complex problems and a restructuring of education and research that spans multiple disciplines. It demands the development of policies that protect the natural and cultural diversity of different regions and promotes the physical and economic health of their inhabitants. This volume offers approaches to the development of a transdisciplinary perspective that embraces natural, social and human sciences in the quest for a sustainable society. It also strives for a global perspective while incorporating the wisdom and experience of local societies.

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Pedagogies of sustainability education

What sort of real-world situations are likely to be faced by students who have completed a course in sustainability science’ The answer to this question will show the direction to be taken in the pedagogy of sustainability education. Pedagogy can be described simply as a “strategy of instruction”. However, teaching, instruction and facilitation are sometimes discussed as distinct activities. In this section, the position is adopted that all three are necessary in sustainability education, and a broad view is taken of pedagogy as design that considers all the elements relevant to the praxis of teaching and learning. As far as space permits, not just the ideas and content of sustainability education will be examined but also its methodologies, learners, teachers/facilitators, basic attitudes towards science and nature and the learning environment, while considering situations that the student is likely to encounter after completing a course in sustainability science (see Box 6.3.1).

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