ESD in England – less briefly ...

Posted in: Comment, New Publications

As I wrote last month, I have been involved in some work for the UK UNESCO National Commission, part of a good team [Note 1], ably led by Steve Martin, writing an ESD Brief [Note 2] covering the UK which ...

"sets out some of the characteristics of best practice which has emerged in the wide range of learning contexts across the UK as well as an analysis of future opportunities for enhancing the core role of education and learning in the pursuit of a more sustainable future."

This brings together insights from the four UK jurisdictions.  I drafted the England part.  In sharing texts, I was struck by the differences between England and the devolved administrations; in the latter, much of what goes on is mediated or strongly influenced by government; In England, now, following the 2010 UK election, and because there is no devolved national or regional administration, or local influence, very little is.  This has obvious weaknesses, but probably some positives as well it should be said.

Inevitably, in bringing four texts together, whilst adding conclusions and recommendations, it's not always possible to include all the points made – unless you adopt a rather cavalier attitude to word limits which I tried, but wasn't allowed, quite rightly, to get away with.  So I am pleased to say that a longer, and more literature-grounded, version of the report has been published in Sustainability. Here's the link.  This has an extended section on the position in England.



1. Stephen Martin (University of the West of England), James Dillon (University of Ulster), Peter Higgins (University of Edinburgh), Carl Peters (University of Wales), and me

2. Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in the UK: Current status, best practice and opportunities for the future (published by the UK National Commission for UNESCO in March 2013)

Posted in: Comment, New Publications


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