Earthducation Expedition 3 explores ecology and education 'down under'
Earthducation Expedition 3, the third in a series of seven-continent explorations investigating the intersection between education and sustainability, begins Feb. 27 in Australia. Led by curriculum and instruction professors Aaron Doering and Charles Miller, the team will discover how education and sustainability intersect on the driest inhabited continent on Earth. In their two-week journey they will collect a diversity of ecological stories from inhabitants across the densely populated regions of Australia as well as the barren Northern Territory and the Great Barrier Reef communities.
"We've been invited by these communities to document the ecological and economic impact of climate change," said Doering. "We start by asking: How can education advance sustainability?" Several environmental topics will be explored including Australia's biodiversity, uranium mining, tourism, and the contributions and concerns of people across the continent, including Aboriginal communities.
The goal of Earthducation is to travel to climate hotspots on all seven continents by 2014, collaborating with different cultures to create a first-of-its-kind narrative from around the world. So far, Doering and Miller have traveled to the Arctic Circle, Burkina Faso, Africa, and northern Norway.
"By gathering stories about education and the environment from around the world, we hope to create a foundation for embedding sustainability in learning at all levels and in all cultures," Miller said. "Ultimately, we anticipate that the Earthducation EnviroNetwork will be the world's leading online community focused exclusively on the increasingly vital fusion of education and sustainability."
The Earthducation project is funded by the University's Institute on the Environment. Doering (project investigator), Miller (co-project investigator), and Cassandra Scharber (co-project investigator) from the Learning Technologies program in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction are spearheading the project and are working with a project team from the Learning Technologies Media Lab.