9/24/2009

New Book Addresses Sustainability in Education

In 2005, after Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans, Professor Randy Curren, who holds joint appointments at Warner and as chair of the philosophy department, started getting calls.

“…Within a few days, I began to get invitations to give talks about the background of the situation in New Orleans connected with the extent of the disaster there; the ethics of disaster relief and prevention; the human factors that contribute to natural disasters…” says Curren, a native New Orleanian. “That led me into thinking about sustainability.”

Curren’s thoughts on sustainability were recently distilled into a book, Education for sustainable development: A philosophical assessment. Published by the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain, Curren supports the idea that education should prepare children for the risks and challenges associated with environmental deterioration.

The book starts with a startling overview of where environmental waste and consumption has gotten us thus far ­including population growth and intensity of resource use, the growing ecological footprint, water availability and climate change­and ends with inspiring proposals for teaching our youth by integrating studies in environment, history, economics, government and design.

A faculty member since 1988 at the University, Curren holds a secondary professorship in the Warner School’s educational leadership program. He works with doctoral students in the leadership, thought, and policy program and teaches courses in philosophy of education and ethics and educational leadership. Curren is editor of the journal, Theory and Research in Education, and author of many other works in philosophy and education.

Tags: book, Randall Curren