Education for Sustainable development

Category: Education

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United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005-2014 “Education at all levels can shape the world of tomorrow…” UNESCO Part I The “Big Picture” OR “What’s this all about?”

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1992 The Rio Earth Summit… Agenda 21 - Action Plan/ “Blueprint for Sustainable Development” (40 chapters, 300 pages) Chapter 36: Promoting Education, Public Awareness and Training Sustainable Development = Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. Background/ History… 1987 The Brundtland Commission…

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2002 The World Summit on Sustainable Development…

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“Our biggest challenge in this new century is to take an idea that seems abstract -- sustainable development -- and turn it into a reality for all the world's people.” Kofi Annan, UNSG, 2001 UNESCO: appointed lead UN agency Approved by UN Gen. Assy. 2002

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1. Promotion and improvement of basic education; 3. Developing public understanding and awareness of sustainability; 4. Training the workforce with knowledge and skills to perform their work in a sustainable manner. Action Areas

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Conservation & Protection Fresh Water Management Biodiversity Sustainable Production & Consumption

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Gender Equality Poverty Alleviation Peace & Int’l Understanding Imp. of Info . & Comm. Technology for ESD Human Rights Health Promotion

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Others forming: Portugal, Greece, Sweden, the Philippines, India, etc. US Partnership for the DESD Japan Council on the DESD German National Committee for the DESD

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…all sectors – higher education, K-12, business, faith communities, non-profits, government …a community-builder, convener, catalyst and communicator for the Decade in the United States

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Sustainability and Higher Education Conference - “Defining the Vision” (October ’04)

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United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005-2014 “Education is the indispensable foundation of all human excellence” Abdu'l-Baha Part II Connecting the Dots between the Bahá’í community……..the DESD

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The Sustainability “Stool” Education for Sustainable Development Environmental Principles Developing Systems Thinkers Spiritual Principles Social Principles Economic Principles

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Examples of Spiritual Principles related to sustainability Economic Social Environmental Elimination of extremes of wealth and poverty Work as worship Moderation Be content w/little Voluntary giving Profit sharing Equality of women and men Elimination of all forms of prejudice Unity in diversity Universal compulsory education Trustworthiness Interdependence of all life Nature a reflection of the Divine Humility – Earth source of all our wealth Unity in diversity Cleanliness Kindness to animals

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Soloist vs. Whole Systems Thinker Can identify one part of a system OR sees no connection between the parts of the system OR lives life through a “zoom lens” without benefit of a “wide angle” lens Makes choices and decisions and takes actions that maximize the health of the whole system upon which the specific parts depend. Able to work well in diverse groups which enable them to recognize interdependencies in systems Adapted from material from the Sustainability Education Center, New York

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Some areas for combining principles of sustainable development and systems thinking Personal Consumption patterns Water & Energy use Clothing purchases Recreation/hobbies Yard care, landscaping Household Cleaning products Home purchase Vacation planning Family planning Transportation choices Community Building a Bahá’í center Organizing a Bahá’í Feast Running a Bahá’í summer school Conference planning Devotional program Business Production methods Energy and water use Waste disposal Employee benefits Stockholder relations

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Case Studies

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Walk/Bike rather than drive Use less gas Get exercise Physically healthier Less carbon emission Reduce air pollution Slow global warming Save $ in the long run Simple Systems Map (Example)

United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005-2014 “Let deeds, not words, be our adorning!“ Abdu'l-Baha Part III Bringing it Home Implementing ESD in the Bahá’í community

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U.S. Partnership – Executive Team Conferences/Seminars Orlando ’03, ’04; ABS ’04 Bahá’í National Center working group (October ’04) Articles and features in publications (Brilliant Star; The American Bahá’í; World Order Magazine) Wilmette Institute online course (Oct. ’05) and other web resources Courses at Bahá’í schools

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Break into Groups Individual Family & Parenting Local Bahá’í community Community at large National community

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Consult on what actions can be taken at that level to advance education for sustainable development Create a list/ diagram/ drawing/ skit/ song and/or dance to communicate to the group the results of your ideas Finish with interpretive gallery of ideas and creations

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