Teaching Urban Sustainability: Lessons from the Classroom and Beyond

A special issue of Social Sciences (ISSN 2076-0760).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 July 2020) | Viewed by 5484

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Geography, Ohio University, Athens, OH 45701-2979, USA
Interests: environmental history and historical geography; environmental justice; mining landscapes; public lands; urban environments; urban sustainability

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Guest Editor
Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, NY 12545, USA
Interests: function of landscape boundaries; plant community succession; spatial heterogeneity in community and landscape structure and dynamics; urban socio-ecological systems; urban resilience; urban sustainability

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Across the globe, the movement of people from rural to urban is occurring at an unprecedented rate. As a result, more than half the world’s population now lives in urbanized areas. In the US and Canada, the number exceeds 80 percent. The growth of new cities (and the expansion of old ones) is often characterized by poor design and a lack of planning. This leads to sprawling development with all its attendant social and environmental ills. The creation of new cities—and the retrofitting of older ones—need not follow this path. Rather than view urbanization as an environmental problem we posit that urbanization—if planned carefully—offers benefits that may prove crucial to long-term sustainability. In our view communicating the principles of urban sustainability to student audiences is critical. In this Special Issue we seek papers that explore the methodologies, rewards, and challenges associated with teaching urban sustainability to university students. We are particularly interested in drawing perspectives from a wide range of disciplines including, but not limited to, ecology, economics, geography, planning, and sociology. While our emphasis is on undergraduate and graduate education, we welcome submissions that offer lessons learned at the primary and secondary levels as well.

Dr. Geoffrey L. Buckley
Dr. Steward T.A. Pickett
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • density
  • diversity
  • design
  • environment
  • economy
  • equity
  • sustainability
  • planning

Published Papers (1 paper)

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16 pages, 1837 KiB  
Article
Teaching Urban Sustainability: A Study Abroad Perspective
by Geoffrey Buckley, Tawny Paul, Hamish Kallin and Harriet Cornell
Soc. Sci. 2019, 8(9), 254; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci8090254 - 5 Sep 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 5071
Abstract
Since 2011 more than 100 students from Ohio University have travelled to Edinburgh, Scotland, to study history, urban planning, and sustainability. In this paper we recount the genesis of this highly successful program, situate it in the broader literature on urban sustainability and [...] Read more.
Since 2011 more than 100 students from Ohio University have travelled to Edinburgh, Scotland, to study history, urban planning, and sustainability. In this paper we recount the genesis of this highly successful program, situate it in the broader literature on urban sustainability and study abroad, and then unpack its contents. We then consider how the adoption of green living practices combined with hands-on and experiential learning activities developed specifically for this program—including sustainability diaries, green spaces surveys, group research projects, and walking tours—complement content that is delivered in the classroom, and furthermore, how an emphasis on planning history and social equity contributes to student understanding of the forces that shape urban landscapes over time. In the end, we conclude that an urban sustainability theme conjoined with a location abroad presents educators with an opportunity to communicate critical sustainability principles that would be difficult to replicate if students did not leave their home university. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Teaching Urban Sustainability: Lessons from the Classroom and Beyond)
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