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Sustainability Education Forum 2024

June 6 - June 7

In June 2023 AASHE piloted the first Sustainability Education Forum. Over 140 registrants from 13 countries across five continents came together to discuss and listen about the challenges and opportunities for sustainability education. Attendees felt that the event facilitated “inspiring, engaging, and meaningful discussions,” provided “a very holistic way of structuring learning and sharing,” and fostered “an inspirational sense of community.” Read more about the 2023 event in this article and these testimonials.

We’d like to build upon that experience and invite you to join the Sustainability Education Forum 2024 on June 6 & 7! Let’s come together, share our expertise and co-create our emerging future. What and how do we teach students given the urgency of the times? How do we “fall-forward” on issues related to sustainability teaching and learning in higher education? Let’s use this opportunity to listen and speak about the issues that matter to interdisciplinary sustainability educators.

Are higher education institutions simply reverting to how things were done pre-pandemic or can we use this opportunity to truly redesign systems? New and different voices need to be heard and conversations need to catalyze actionable change. On June 6 and 7, let’s talk with each other, think with each other and respectfully challenge each other’s ideas in order to advance sustainability education across the curriculum.

The Sustainability Education Forum (SEF) will provide space to explore these possibilities and more. Per the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a forum is “a public meeting place for open discussion” and this is what the SEF offers – a space for authentic conversations, where we can engage as a community and with each other. Throughout the SEF, you will have plenty of chances to exchange ideas and make new professional connections, while gaining inspiration and an opportunity to recharge your own efforts. 

Intended Audience

This is the event to attend if you’re:

  • a faculty in any discipline who is engaged with sustainability education
  • interested in or just starting incorporating sustainability literacy in your courses
  • considering building a sustainability curriculum development program at your institution
  • new or a veteran at building sustainability across the curriculum programs
  • involved with sustainability-degree programs
  • a sustainability staff who is involved with curriculum initiatives
  • an instructional designer supporting faculty incorporating sustainability in their courses
  • anyone interested in sustainability education and research at higher education institutions.

At this event, you will connect with others who approach their work with the same sense of urgency that you do. It is these types of connections that serve us throughout the years; they make the hard times manageable and the good times fun. Join us and let’s make some good times — together!

Key Details

Event Dates: The SEF will take place on Thursday, June 6 and Friday, June 7 spanning multiple timezones. See Tentative Schedule.

Registration Fees*

Registration Type STANDARD FEE
Individual associated with an AASHE member organization* $125
Individual not associated with an AASHE member organization $175
Groups Full price for first registrant and 20% off for each subsequent registrant
* To check if your organization is a current AASHE member, please search the AASHE Membership Directory.

Discounts are available for group registration. A limited number of scholarships are available to individuals who need financial assistance to participate. Please apply by June 4 to be considered for a scholarship for this event.

If you are tuning into the event from the Asia-Pacific region, contact us for significantly discounted registration rates!

Registration Policies:

  • Payment is accepted in the form of Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover cards.
    If you need to pay by check or ACH, please contact us at least 5 weeks prior to the event start date. Registration using these forms of payment must be received 4 weeks prior to the event start date and full payment must be received by AASHE within 2 weeks of event start date.
  • Cancellation Policy: A 20% processing fee applies to any cancellation prior to May 27, 2024. No refunds will be given after May 27, 2024.
  • No substitutions are allowed.
  • Registered participants will receive access to the recorded portions after the live event.
  • Review all Terms & Conditions.

Register today

Tentative Schedule (listed in EDT) – see schedule in other time zones

Day 1

Block 1: 9:45 a.m – 1:30 p.m. EDT
     Introduction to event
Invitation #1: Teaching at Twilight: The Meaning of Education in the Age of Collapse
     Open Space Discussions
     Break

Block 2: 2 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. EDT
Invitation #2: Indigenizing Sustainabilities, Sustaining Indigeneities: Decolonization and Sustainability Education
     Open Space Discussions
     Break

Block 3: 7 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. EDT
Invitation #3:
     Open Space Discussions

Day 2

Block 4: 10 a.m – 1:30 p.m. EDT
Invitation #4:
     Open Space Discussions
     Break

 

Block 5: 2 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. EDT
Invitation #5:
     Open Space Discussions
     Closing/Wrap Up

 

 

Invitations

These thought-provoking sessions are intended to encourage discussion, challenge conventional wisdom, and stimulate new ideas, thoughts and actions. 

Invitation #1: Teaching at Twilight: The Meaning of Education in the Age of Collapse
Ahmed Afzaal (Associate Professor, Religion department, Concordia College)

An exploration of the answers to the question “We Are Doomed. Now What?” 

In the opening session of the SEF, Prof. Ahmed Afzaal invites all educators to take an unflinching look at the rapidly deteriorating state of the earth’s life-support system, become aware of its implications for human civilization, and rethink their responsibility in light of that awareness.

Large-scale behavioral changes are imperative, not necessarily to “save the planet” but to reduce unnecessary pain and suffering. Yet, the vast majority of educators are still functioning in the “normal” mode, teaching the same subjects and skills, year after year, even as the nature of the challenges our students will face is undergoing dramatic changes. This mismatch is causing a moral and spiritual crisis that is threatening to make our lives and our work meaningless.

What is the responsibility of educators given the enormous challenges of living through the coming years and decades? In this thought-provoking session and discussion, we’ll examine how we must fundamentally change how we live, teach, and lead. Why do we educate, how do we educate, and what can educators do now in this time of collapse if future generations are to be intellectually and psychologically equipped to live on the rapidly changing Earth?

Invitation #2: Indigenizing Sustainabilities, Sustaining Indigeneities: Decolonization and Sustainability Education
Tim Frandy (Assistant Professor of Nordic Studies, Department of Central, Eastern, and Northern European Studies, University of British Columbia)

Drawing on collaborative fieldwork with Indigenous people in Sápmi (the Sámi homeland region) and on Anishinaabe Aki (Anishinaabe lands of the Western Great Lakes region), Sámi American scholar Tim Frandy’s talk explores how neoliberal use of the term sustainability sometimes serves as a neocolonial tool to disrupt and dispossess traditional Indigenous land relations. This presentation draws upon traditional stories and land-stewardship practices to demonstrate the efficacy of Indigenous land stewardship, and to suggest the centrality of land sovereignty in the securing of Indigenous futures.

Tim Frandy is an Assistant Professor of Nordic Studies in the Department of Central, Eastern, and Northern European Studies at the University of British Columbia, and a member of the Sámi American community. They are editor and translator of Inari Sámi Folklore: Stories from Aanaar, the first polyvocal collection of Sámi folklore published in English, and the co-editor with B. Marcus Cederström of Culture Work: Folklore for the Public Good, included on Smithsonian Magazine’s list of Best Academic Books of 2022.

Invitation #3:

Invitation #4: 

Invitation #5: 

How It Will Work

SEF is designed to be participatory, inclusive and collaborative and is based on an Open Space Technology (OST) format. You are invited to speak and share, pose questions and/or ask for input with the ultimate aim of refining and progressing your sustainability education approach. Guidelines will be provided to make best use of our time together and to maximize capacities for partnerships and exchange. 

In addition to several pre-scheduled sessions that we call Invitations, you – the participant – get to propose the topics that will be discussed and then set the agenda for discussion. The agenda will be created live each day by attendees who are present. Anyone who wants to host a session will announce the topic and choose a space and time and be assigned a session room. You and the other participants choose which discussions to attend.

Although the Forum is 100% online, there’s nothing virtual about it. Participate in this event as if it were in-person:

  • Save the time you would have spent walking through the security line at TSA, and spend it with friends and colleagues by being present and engaged.
  • Save the money you would have spent on transportation to the venue, and put it towards a great meal.

Share This Event

When we bring all voices and perspectives into the room, we create the conditions for powerful change. Invite your colleagues to join you at this event by using these sample messages!

Any questions about the event?
Please contact Daita Serghi, education@aashe.org.

Testimonials from 2023 participants

  • The AASHE Sustainability Education Forum was an excellent experience that provided knowledge sharing, community building, and transformative insights to help me strengthen my own work while feeling more connected to others in the sustainability education space.
  • The content, structure and dialogue in this Forum was not only unique, but in its totality, unmatched as it relates to issues in sustainability and its ability to meet the interests of participants.
  • Loved the opportunity to interact with likeminded colleagues, loved the keynotes, and LOVED the open space technology.
  • Loved seeing the open space process in action in a virtual setting, and the example it offers for good online engagement.
  • Love it! Very inspiring and interactive, a lot of engagement and meaningful discussions.
  • This conference was incredibly important and timely for me and my university. I need to spend time debriefing now! So many wonderful conversations and points made!
  • Presenters were exceptional and breakout rooms were just long enough and full of rich discussion.

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Thank you to our Promotional Partners for your support!

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