Exploring environmental justice in educational research Exploring environmental justice in educational research

Article Authors: Expedito Nuwategeka, Carlos Monge, Robin Shields, Ashik Singh


This paper outlines the conceptual approach to environmental justice used in the JustEd project. It concentrates on how two approaches –the anthropocentric and the eco-centric approach –conceptualize environmental justice in different terms, and the implications these two approaches hold for education policy and practice globally. It also discusses the shift from environmental education to education for sustainable development and its implications for education policies and contents.

The prevailing approach to the challenge of achieving environmental justice is an anthropocentric one, in which environmental rights are framed primarily in the context of humans’ wellbeing. This approach includes perspectives that view our right to access natural resources in a utilitarian perspective, maximizing the total benefit to society (while condoning possible inequalities) and those that emphasize the right to live in healthy ecosystems, centered more on well-being. However, this anthropocentric approach is increasingly challenged by a biocentric or eco-centric perspective, in which the ‘right to nature perspective is replaced by a ‘rights of nature’ one. This approach is often considered post-humanist in that it decenters human concerns and instead focuses on the inherent rights of non-human subjects (e.g. animals, rivers, forests) (Schlosberg 2007).

Bibliographical metadata

Journal JustEd: Education asand forenvironmental, epistemic and transitional justice
DOI 10.5281/zenodo.5517300
Related Faculties/Schools