Volume 15, Issue 01

OIDA International Journal of Sustainable Development
Open-access peer-reviewed journal 

The Sustainable Human and Environmental Systems Approach to Sustainability Education: Foundational Principles, Pedagogical Strategies, and Administrative Considerations

Paul A. Barresi 1, Michael A. Reiter 2, Richard C. Smardon 3
1 Professor of Political Science and Environmental Law, School of Arts, Sciences, and Education, Southern New Hampshire University, 2500 North River Road, Manchester, New Hampshire, USA 03106, Adjunct Professor of Law, Sun Yat-sen University School of Law, Guangzhou, China.
2 Professor, Director, and Chair, Department of Integrated Environmental Science, Bethune, Cookman University, Daytona Beach, Florida, USA 32114-3099
3 SUNY Distinguished Service Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Environmental Studies, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, New York, USA 13210

Volume 15, Issue 01, Pg. 11-22, 2022.

Abstract: Since 2009, the Sustainable Human and Environmental Systems (SHES) Roundtable has been a collaborative forum for college and university faculty and administrators, practitioners, and others from throughout North America and beyond to pursue their commitment to providing students with the knowledge and skills needed to meet the existential sustainability challenges that plague the modern world. The result has been the SHES approach to sustainability education—a living set of recommendations about the pedagogy and administration of interdisciplinary and higher-order, sustainability-focused programs in higher education. The Roundtable’s edited book—Education for Sustainable Human and Environmental Systems: From Theory to Practice (Routledge, 2019)—is the most comprehensive summary of the Roundtable’s first decade of work. The SHES approach to sustainability education is rooted in a vision, a mission, and a strategic goal. The essence of the SHES vision is a world of sustainable societies. The essence of the SHES mission is to sustain the viability of the human and environmental systems and interactions among those systems on which the realization of the vision depends. The essence of the SHES strategic goal is to bring about and to sustain the types of social learning needed to fulfill the mission. The SHES approach to sustainability education rests on six foundational principles: holism, supradisciplinarity, systems thinking, revealed complexity, social learning, and stakeholder engagement. Although the SHES approach is compatible with many pedagogical strategies, some of them are natural allies in achieving its learning outcomes. They include competency-based education (if properly conceived), backward design, the flipped classroom, project-based learning, and the Socratic method. The SHES approach to sustainability education also is suitable for use in any institutional setting. Yet, certain administrative considerations are likely to warrant special attention when building a SHES-based degree program. They include supporting SHES faculty, supporting SHES program design, and broader institutional support and recognition for the SHES approach.

Keywords: Education, environmental systems, human systems, sustainability, holism

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Towards Development of Security and Safety Education Support Sustainability regime to tackle gender-based violence and femicide on campuses

Jacob Tseko Mofokeng 1, Kagiso Nicholas Tlou 2
1,2 Tshwane University of Technology, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Safety and Security Management, 2 Aubrey Matlakala Street, Soshanguve – K, Soshanguve, 0001, Pretoria, South Africa.

Volume 15, Issue 01, Pg. 23-38, 2022.

Abstract: The aim of the article is to contribute to knowledge on how violence, in a form of gender-based violence and femicide (GBVF) attacks pose a serious threat to the lives of students on campus. Secondly, the paper posits that sustainable development goals can be supported by security and safety education on campus, where security refers to the state of being free from danger or threats and safety applies to creating protection from risks or dangers. It is argued that both the challenges of civilisation and the evolution of society generate new consequences, which may be harmful for human and sustainable development. Crisis and conflicts, pandemics, poverty of social groups, ethnic tensions within states, disintegration of elements of social ties, lack of care for the environment, non-compliance with the rules of social coexistence, weakening of the system of values and moral norms, intensification of social pathology (i.e., addictions, corruption), and social alienation are some of the factors that create unfavorable external conditions for the growth of humanity. Thus, the safety and security of students on campuses is a critical matter that cannot be compromised or taken lightly. Higher education institutions (HEIs) are places that offer teaching and learning services to many diverse people. Hence, it is important to have strategies in place, such as but not limited to; amendment of HEIs curricula, to address education as a holistic field of security and safety, covering GBVF, is the most effective and cheapest form of counteracting threats. It is the basic path in shaping human development: it provides individuals with appropriate knowledge and necessary skills, to ensure safety in HEIs. Formalising the relationship between the legislator through the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) Policy Framework and HEIs implementing the directives of security and safety education will allow for the creation of programmes relying on sustainable development promotion. GBVF is a phenomenon that drives numerous acts of violence against women, children and homosexuals that are committed by men at a high rate. These attacks are also prone in the HEIs in South Africa, and in other countries around the world. Safety and security is a tremendous and a human rights issue on campuses, and additional procedures need to be taken to prevent harmful acts to students from happening. GBVF can be prevented on campuses once safety strategies are put in place. The consulted literature review in this paper highlighted some of the strategies that can be used to address GBVF at HEIs in South Africa and other HEIs from other countries. The findings are outlined in this paper such as; the need for a combination of security and safety education with sustainability which might trigger newer and more complex research directions, for instance, the coherent concept of teaching security and safety education, combating threats related to GBVF for sustainable development, or effective teaching about patriarchy and how youth should be taught the values of ubuntu. Future analyses and experiments involving new perspectives and state-of-the-art solutions will open new ways of thinking and contribute to a better, sustainable future. Recommended ways in which these strategies can be used to address GBVF on campuses are outlined.

Keywords: Campus, community, education, gender-based violence and femicide, higher education institutions, safety, strategies

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Comparative analysis of ASEAN countries using Sustainability Window and Doughnut Economy models

Luukkanen, Jyrki, Kaivo-oja 1, Jari and Vehmas 2, Jarmo 3
1,2,3 Finland Futures Research Centre, University of Turku, Åkerlundinkatu 2 A, 33100 Tampere, Finland.

Volume 15, Issue 01, Pg. 39-56, 2022.

Abstract: The role of economic growth has been central in the discussion about sustainability. Economic growth has been linked to the social development of societies, to the improvement in welfare and to poverty alleviation. Economic growth has also been seen as a driver of climate change and environmental destruction. Also, the problems related to equity and internal and international inequality are often linked to economic growth.

The Sustainability Window (SuWi) -analysis is a novel method that can be used to analyse the sustainability of development simultaneously in environmental, economic and social dimensions. SuWi is used for analysing sustainability using different indicators in order to provide information on the maximum and minimum economic development to maintain the development within sustainability boundaries. The maximum economic development is determined using environmental criteria, not to exceed sustainable environmental stress, and the minimum economic development using social criteria, to guarantee sustainable social development. The Sustainability Window method can be used for comparative analysis because it is possible to use different indicators and different time periods which makes the comparative analysis of different dimensions easy. This novel method makes it also possible to analyse the dynamics of sustainability and changes over time.

Sustainability Window analysis can be used for analysing both weak and strong sustainability. Weak sustainability means that the intensity of environmental stress, measured with different indicators, should not increase. Strong sustainability means that environmental stress per se should not increase.

Sustainability Window analysis can be used for constructing the Doughnut Economy model for the analysed countries. In the Doughnut Economy model, the SuWi results are organised in a radial diagram to illustrate the possible area for sustainable economic development in relation to environmental and social development. The outer boundary of economic development indicates the maximum economic development not to exceed the environmental boundaries. The inner boundary illustrates the minimum economic development to fulfil the social development needs. The doughnut area between the outer and inner boundaries forms the sustainable development space.

This study provides a comparative Doughnut Model analysis based on SuWi analyses of eight ASEAN countries within the time frame of 2006-2016. The data used for the sustainability analysis in the study is taken from the Sustainable Society Index (SSI) database and UN SDGs data, which provide comprehensive data sets for key dimensions of sustainability.

This study reveals key challenges and successful cases of sustainable development in eight ASEAN -countries. The results of the analyses illustrate the problematic areas of development and the successful areas in each ASEAN country. The countries perform differently in different areas having both successful and problematic areas where further policy efforts are needed. The results of the SuWi analysis can be used as a basis for developing balanced sustainability strategies in the ASEAN countries. The research results of the comparative analyses can be used for learning processes in the planning of sustainability policies in the different ASEAN countries.

Keywords: ASEAN; Doughnut economy; sustainable development; Sustainability Window; sustainability transitions

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