08 SES 03, Looking ahead – Challenges and Dilemmas in Education for Sustainable Development
Parallel Paper Session
Investing in cultural diversity and an intercultural dialogue is today regarded as one of the guiding principles within education for sustainable development (ESD) (Unesco 2009). A popular way of increasing intercultural understanding in order to deal with cultural diversity is by meeting – at eye-level – with people coming from other cultural backgrounds.
We have studied teachers taking part in a Sida-funded in-service training programme called the Global Journey wherethe aim of the program is to foster intercultural dialogue and education in global issues for sustainable development in preschools, schools and adult education. Global Journeys provide opportunities for groups of Swedish teachers and educational professionals to spend an intense period of time in a developing country. The visits are part of a structured process of learning, planned a year in advance and evaluated four months after each journey.
We believe that this aim to strengthen the linkage between culture and ESD can be seen as a turn to ethics in so far as it involves thinking about the ways in which we respond to otherness. Ethical issues arise in relation to others, between bodies – and there we also face our moral dilemmas. The aim of this paper is to study teachers’ moral meaning-making in a lived cultural encounter that involves moral and ethical judgements. We also would like to discuss the educational implications of cultural encounters such as Global Journeys and the educational value of traveling to meet the other.
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