The socio-ecological system approach describes the interaction between humanity and the natural system that surrounds it, based on the understanding that this system is important to humanity’s ability to survive. To best preserve both systems we must understand their components – social and ecological – and their mutual interactions (Berkes & Folke, 1998). Socio-ecological systems in Israel are characterized by rich biodiversity, high population density and multicultural pressure, most prominently the ongoing regional conflict between Muslims and Jews. This combination produces environmental injustice: a subset of social injustice that targets disadvantaged populations, usually from lower socio-economic strata, which are disproportionately affected by environmental issues (Mohai, Pellow & Roberts, 2009).
Social and environmental injustice is known to be harmful to socio-ecological systems, so preserving such systems must include working to minimize it. With these goals in mind, we created an environmental-education course for the Masters track in a teacher training college. The course, based on a series of field trips, addresses the socio-ecological systems in which the multicultural conflict is intertwined. It is designed to acquaint students with the voices of individuals who often go unheard, and promote better understanding by encouraging different groups to learn more about one another.
This study sought to examine students’ post-course perceptions of socio-ecological systems' complexity. It asked:
a) How did this varied pedagogy course influence how students from different cultures perceive socio-ecological systems in the context of social and environmental justice?
b) How did pedagogical processes based on integration between students from different cultures influence each culture's perception of the other?
Berkes, F., & Folke, C. (1998). Linking social and ecological systems for resilience and sustainability. Linking social and ecological systems: management practices and social mechanisms for building resilience, 1, 13-20. Mohai, P., Pellow, D., & Roberts, J. T. (2009). Environmental Justice. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 34(1), 405-430.
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
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Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
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Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
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Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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