Title: As the heating happens: Education for Sustainable Development or Education for Sustainable Contraction?

Authors: David Selby

Addresses: Centre for Sustainable Futures, Kirkby Lodge, University of Plymouth, Devon PL4 8AA, UK

Abstract: There is widespread consensus within the international scientific community that global warming is happening and that its causes are primarily anthropogenic. Future histories anticipate massive environmental and social upheaval unless carbon emissions are dramatically curtailed in the near future. Responses to the prospect of a hotter planet include welcome, refutation, avoidance and denial, and concerned activism. Denial is evident among those seeking to effect social change, including advocates of education for sustainable development. A fundamental issue for those advocates is the relevance of continuing to talk about development as the heating happens. An alternative, education for social contraction, is elaborated.

Keywords: climate change; global warming; education for sustainable development; ESD; education for sustainable contraction; ESC; denial; cognitive dissonance; despair; empowerment; education for citizenship; denizenship; localisation; sustainability.

DOI: 10.1504/IJISD.2007.017938

International Journal of Innovation and Sustainable Development, 2007 Vol.2 No.3/4, pp.249 - 267

Available online: 24 Apr 2008

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