Why we must act
"Climate, soil, air, water, energy resources, food, fisheries, and biodiversity are all elements of the global commons, and all have prospects that range from uncertain to perilous."
"When scientists and public policy specialists gathered at the Earth Institute at Columbia University, New York, to assess the State of the Planet in 2004, their overriding concern centered on global-scale interactions between the growing human population and Earth processes under increasing strain. The fourfold increase of the human population during the past century, coupled with a roughly 4.5-fold increase of economic activity per person, has led to adverse anthropogenic effects on species extinction, ecosystem functions and biodiversity, climate change, groundwater depletion, soil nutrient losses, and zoonotic disease emergence and transmission, with far too little societal effort invested in mitigating these consequences... There is a public hunger today for information that is not spin or sound bites."
Calls to Action by DANS Partner HEASC (Higher Education Associations Sustainability Consortium)
1. HEASC Call to Action for Sustainability in Job Descriptions and Performance Reviews
The national trend to include sustainability in all areas of higher education is robust. Sustainability is being integrated into planning, operations, procurement, governmental relations, curricular and co-curricular activities, and community partnerships. There is now an opportunity to institutionalize this progress. We call upon higher education administrators and their department of Human Resources to infuse sustainability principles and practices into job descriptions and most importantly, annual performance evaluations. Each faculty and staff member can make contributions to the institution’s sustainability practices, and performance evaluations can encourage their efforts. Lead institutions have already moved in this direction, including Arizona State and Cornell University. (Presidents and Executive Administrators have supported these endeavors with the assistance of Human Resources and offices of Sustainability.)
2. HEASC Call to Action for Clean Energy Education
Includes sections on key components of clean energy education and why clean energy education matters to all disciplines, and a list of resources.
Sustainability Improves Student Learning (March 29,2013)
SISL is a select group of academic associations and disciplinary societies working together to: 1) increase students' learning in undergraduate courses, and 2) to better prepare students for the 21st-century "Big Questions" that relate to real-world challenges such as energy, air and water quality, and climate change. The portal brings you to hundreds of learner activities, a Beginner's Toolkit, and essential components of sustainability to empower students to participate in forming soultions to urgent societal challenges
Newest Partner Joins DANS
The International Environmental Communication Association (IECA) has recently joined the DANS efforts to stimulate education for sustainability. Look for some of their resources to be added to our site shortly. In the interim you can visit their website http://theieca.org/
DANS Partners Win FIPSE Grant (March 3, 2012)
DANS has partnered with the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) and eleven disciplinary societies to win a U.S. Department of Education FIPSE grant. “Sustainability Improves Student Learning in STEM " will bring the power of the disciplines to:
- Increase their learning in undergraduate STEM courses, and
- better prepare them for the real-world 21st century “Big Questions" that relate to real-world issues such as energy, air and water quality, and climate change.
Watch the Education for a Sustainable Future Webinar
Listen to Debra Rowe and others as they present a 90-minute webinar on the latest trends in sustainability on campus. Several higher education experts highlight some of the best examples of implementing sustainable projects and practices.
Sample of resources available from DANS members:
- Aspen Institute - Caseplace.org is a practical and dynamic resource for up-to-date case studies, syllabi and innovative MBA teaching materials on business and sustainability- from corporate governance to sustainable development
- A column in the APA Monitor by Dr. Cynthia Belar on sustainability
- Teaching Psychology for Sustainability: A Manual of Resources (award-winning web page!)
- Legislative Policy Tracker: http://www.aaas.org/gr/stc/legtracker/legtracker11.shtml
- Climate Resources: http://www.aaas.org/news/press_room/climate_change/
- AAAS Center for Science, Technology and Sustainability: http://www.aaas.org/programs/centers/sd/
- American Society of Civil Engineers Sustainability Initiative http://www.asce.org/sustainability/
For additional resources click here.