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Empowering Future Guardians: Proposing and Implementing an Eco-Social Course at UAB to Equip Students for Nature Conservation

When we talk about «acting for sustainability», what does this mean?

What kind of «action»? In which direction? Under which social and environmental paradigm?

This kind of, I would say, political question regarding this Action competence is important to be made.


As researchers, do we consider studying sustainability as an «action» by itself? Or we do expect change to happen far from our academic task? How do we gather information about social protest and social change and bring it to the institution?

 

This might be an interesting question to be made, now that it connects with what’s more MEANINGFUL to make the alleged changes, we have to make in the so little time that Science affirmed we have.

 

Considering «action» as part of our daily lives and ways of consuming, but also, as part of our ways of relating with others (asking «to which community or communities do I belong») can be crucial. And also, very important to be coherent with what some might call «ecological realism».

 

This ecological realism is a concept to approach the climate changes and ecological collapses we are facing. That way, we start focusing on the current social needs that we have to address and not only on preventing an ecological crisis that, in fact, are already happening.

 

The thoughts I’m expressing allowed some ECF4CLIM-UAB members to create a small course on the «eco-social crisis». The aim of the course is to give some tools to different students from different degrees in UAB (we had nearly 50 applications from all over the campus degrees) so that they can link their studies with this eco-social perspective.

 

Moreover, we want to gather data from UAB environmental management so that students can make proposals and help, as far as we are having the capacity, in the management of this ecosystem that is a university campus. This perspective is specifically relevant in UAB, now that is surrounded by fields and forests. It is also «a second home» for thousands of professors, students and workers. We found that there was a need of closing cycles inside this ecosystem. In the context of this course we might open the door to some institutional changes. At least, we will try.

 

The course is organized around 5 conferences and 5 practical workshops. It started on February 2024 and will finish in May 2024.

 

We will update you with our improvements. For now, you can take a look in our website, which will be in construction, and updated, during the course.

 



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