Matching Items (8)

134634-Thumbnail Image.png

Sustaining Change: An Introduction to Understanding and Rebranding Environmental Social Activism

Description

Modern American environmental social movements have strived for a better world for nearly fifty years, pushing a philosophy of careful resource use and limited consumption as an alternative to the

Modern American environmental social movements have strived for a better world for nearly fifty years, pushing a philosophy of careful resource use and limited consumption as an alternative to the pollution and degradation that has so far accompanied global industrialization. The reach of these movements is broad and the topic they cover is one that aligns with the values and beliefs of many; it is thus quite confusing that they've been so unsuccessful. This thesis was a response to that apparent contradiction, exploring why movements have not been as successful as both they and the public initially desired. It began by defining what social movements are and how they emerge or find success, then provided a brief history of environmentalism in America, and the different successes and failures that occurred before and after the first Earth day in 1970. Finally, it explored some of the reasons environmentalism was unsuccessful, and found that while structural barriers like politics and business interests played a role in movement outcomes, the tactics of different groups were at least partially to blame. Once this was concluded, the author used the perspectives of different activists to propose ways to enhance the quality of current movements and allow them to continue to make progress well into the future. In order to expand the audience of this thesis, the author is also working on a children;s book that illustrates many of the important themes that he hopes to convey to the public. Though drafted, the book is incomplete as of the date that documents are due for Barrett review.

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

130979-Thumbnail Image.png

The Successes and Failures of the Freedom Budget and What They Mean for Today’s Progressive Battles

Description

In the 1960s, prominent Civil Rights leaders proposed a Freedom Budget For All Americans, a policy proposal pamphlet with ambitious goals such as the abolition of poverty, universal healthcare and

In the 1960s, prominent Civil Rights leaders proposed a Freedom Budget For All Americans, a policy proposal pamphlet with ambitious goals such as the abolition of poverty, universal healthcare and housing, fair wages for workers, a progressive tax, and more. These economic goals were meant to alleviate racial inequality by attacking the deep roots of inequality in the United States. While the Freedom Budget did not pass, the movement for the goals was incredibly remarkable and modern progressive movements like that for the Green New Deal can learn much from the successes and failures of the Freedom Budget. This thesis aims to identify strengths and weaknesses, analyze the causes behind them, and synthesize these factors into the modern context of the Green New Deal's fight.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-12

135133-Thumbnail Image.png

The Effects of Christianity and Hinduism on Environmentalism

Description

This research examined the influence that Christian and Hindu religious beliefs have on environmentalism; specifically, whether beliefs that one would return to this earth after death (i.e., a belief in

This research examined the influence that Christian and Hindu religious beliefs have on environmentalism; specifically, whether beliefs that one would return to this earth after death (i.e., a belief in reincarnation) and how the world might end may explain more positive attitudes toward the environment. Participants were 533 self-identified Christians and Hindus in the United States and India who completed an online survey assessing religiosity, positive attitudes towards environmentalism, afterlife beliefs, and eschatological beliefs. Christians showed significantly lower ratings of environmentalism compared with Hindus. There were also significant negative differences found based on beliefs about heaven, eschatology beliefs, and increased religiosity in Christians, and significant positive differences found based on reincarnation, eschatology beliefs, and increased religiosity in Hindus. Overall, these results suggest that Christians are less likely to have positive attitudes toward environmentalism compared with Hindus, and that beliefs about the afterlife and the end of the world were significant predictors of environmentalist attitudes.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016-12

157791-Thumbnail Image.png

Shifting the sustainability paradigm: co-creating thriving living systems through regenerative development

Description

Sustainability research and action in communities should be holistic, integrating sociocultural, biogeophysical, and spiritual components and their temporal and spatial dynamics toward the aim of co-creating thriving living systems. Yet

Sustainability research and action in communities should be holistic, integrating sociocultural, biogeophysical, and spiritual components and their temporal and spatial dynamics toward the aim of co-creating thriving living systems. Yet scientists and practitioners still struggle with such integration. Regenerative development (RD) offers a way forward. RD focuses on shifting the consciousness and thinking underlying (un)sustainability as well as their manifestation in the physical world, creating increasingly higher levels of health and vitality for all life across scales. However, tools are nascent and relatively insular. Until recently, no empirical scientific research studies had been published on RD processes and outcomes.

My dissertation fills this gap in three complementary studies. The first is an integrative review that contextualizes regenerative development within the fields of sustainability, sustainable design and development, and ecology by identifying its conceptual elements and introducing a regenerative landscape development paradigm. The second study integrates complex adaptive systems science, ecology, sustainability, and regenerative development to construct and pilot the first iteration of a holistic sustainable development evaluation tool—the Regenerative Development Evaluation Tool—in two river restoration projects. The third study builds upon the first two, integrating scientific knowledge with existing RD and sustainable community design and development practices and theory to construct and pilot a Regenerative Community Development (RCD) Framework. Results indicate that the RCD Framework and Tools, when used within a regenerative landscape development paradigm, can facilitate: (1) shifts in thinking and development and design outcomes to holistic and regenerative ones; (2) identification of areas where development and design projects can become more regenerative and ways to do so; and (3) identification of factors that potentially facilitate and impede RCD processes. Overall, this research provides a direction and tools for holistic sustainable development as well as foundational studies for further research.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019

154247-Thumbnail Image.png

Remaking a people, restoring a watershed: Klamath tribal empowerment through natural resource activism, 1960-2014

Description

Natural resources management is a pressing issue for Native American nations and communities. More than ever before, tribal officials sit at the decision-making tables with federal and state officials

Natural resources management is a pressing issue for Native American nations and communities. More than ever before, tribal officials sit at the decision-making tables with federal and state officials as well as non-governmental natural resource stakeholders. This, however, has not always been the case. This dissertation focuses on tribal activism to demonstrate how and why tribal sovereignty, self-determination, and treaty rights protection are tied closely to contemporary environmental issues and natural resources management. With the Klamath Tribes of southern Oregon as a case study, this dissertation analyzes how a tribal nation garnered a political position in which it could both indirectly influence and directly orchestrate natural resource management within and outside of its sovereign boundaries. The Klamath Tribes experienced the devastating termination policy in the 1950s. Termination stripped them of their federal status as an Indian tribe, the government services offered to recognized tribes, and their 1.2-million-acre reservation. Despite this horrific event, the Klamaths emerged by the 2000s as leading natural resource stakeholders in the Klamath River Watershed, a region ten times larger than their former reservation. The Klamaths used tools, such as their treaty and water rights, and employed careful political, legal, and social tactics. For example, they litigated, appropriated science, participated in democratic national environmental policy processes, and developed a lexicon. They also negotiated and established alliances with non-governmental stakeholders in order to refocus watershed management toward a holistic approach that promoted ecological restoration.

This study applies spatial theory and an ethnohistorical approach to show how traditional values drove the Klamaths’ contemporary activism. From their perspective, healing the land would heal the people. The Klamaths’ history illuminates the active roles that tribes have had in the institutionalization of the federal self-determination policy as federal agencies resisted recognizing tribes and working with them in government-to-government relationships. Through their efforts to weave their interests into natural resource management with state, federal, and non-governmental stakeholders, the Klamaths took part in a much larger historical trend, the increased pluralization of American society.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

151116-Thumbnail Image.png

Environmental values, objectivity, and advocacy: a sociological study of academic environmental scientists

Description

Professional environmental scientists are increasingly under pressure to inform and even shape policy. Scientists engage policy effectively when they act within the bounds of objectivity, credibility, and authority, yet significant

Professional environmental scientists are increasingly under pressure to inform and even shape policy. Scientists engage policy effectively when they act within the bounds of objectivity, credibility, and authority, yet significant portions of the scientific community condemn such acts as advocacy. They argue that it is nonobjective, that it risks damaging the credibility of science, and that it is an abuse of authority. This means objectivity, credibility, and authority deserve direct attention before the policy advocacy quagmire can be reasonably understood. I investigate the meaning of objectivity in science and that necessarily brings the roles of values in science into question. This thesis is a sociological study of the roles environmental values play in the decisions of environmental scientists working in the institution of academia. I argue that the gridlocked nature of the environmental policy advocacy debates can be traced to what seems to be a deep tension and perhaps confusion among these scientists. I provide empirical evidence of this tension and confusion through the use of in depth semi-structured interviews among a sampling of academic environmental scientists (AES). I show that there is a struggle for these AES to reconcile their support for environmentalist values and goals with their commitment to scientific objectivity and their concerns about being credible scientists in the academy. Additionally, I supplemented my data collection with environmental sociology and history, plus philosophy and sociology of science literatures. With this, I developed a system for understanding values in science (of which environmental values are a subset) with respect to the limits of my sample and study. This examination of respondent behavior provides support that it is possible for AES to act on their environmental values without compromising their objectivity, credibility, and authority. These scientists were not likely to practice this in conversations with colleagues and policy-makers, but were likely to behave this way with students. The legitimate extension of this behavior is a viable route for continuing to integrate the human and social dimensions of environmental science into its practice, its training, and its relationship with policy.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

153472-Thumbnail Image.png

From desert city to suburban metropolis: urban growth and environmentalism in Phoenix, 1945-1980

Description

Postwar suburban sprawl resulted in environmental consequences that engendered backlash from those concerned about the quality life in the places they lived, played, and worked. Few cities grew as rapidly

Postwar suburban sprawl resulted in environmental consequences that engendered backlash from those concerned about the quality life in the places they lived, played, and worked. Few cities grew as rapidly as Phoenix and therefore the city offers an important case study to evaluate the success and limits of environmentalism in shaping urban growth in the postwar period.

Using three episodes looking at sanitation and public health, open space preservation, and urban transportation, I argue three factors played a critical role in determining the extent to which environmental values were incorporated into Phoenix's urban growth policy. First, the degree to which environmental values influenced urban policy depends on the degree to which they fit into the Southwestern suburban lifestyle. A desire for low-density development and quality of life amenities like outdoor recreation resulted in decisions to extend municipal sewers further into the desert, the creation of a mountain preserve system, and freeways as the primary mode of travel in the city. Second, federal policy and the availability of funds guided policies pursued by Phoenix officials to deal with the unintended environmental impacts of growth. For example, federal dollars provided one-third of the funds for the construction of a centralized sewage treatment plant, half the funds to save Camelback Mountain and ninety percent of the construction costs for the West Papago-Inner Loop. Lastly, policy alternatives needed broad and diverse public support, as the public played a critical role, through bond approvals and votes, as well as grassroots campaigning, in integrating environmental values into urban growth policy. Public advocacy campaigns played an important role in setting the policy agenda and framing the policy issues that shaped policy alternatives and the public's receptivity to those choices.

Urban policy decisions are part of a dynamic and ongoing process, where previous decisions result in new challenges that provide an opportunity for debate, and the incorporation of new social values into the decision-making process. While twenty-first century challenges require responses that reflect contemporary macroeconomic factors and social values, the postwar period demonstrates the need for inclusive, collaborative, and anticipatory decision-making.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

150805-Thumbnail Image.png

Protecting the spiritual environment: rhetoric and Chinese Buddhist environmentalism

Description

This dissertation analyzes the way in which leaders of certain Taiwanese Buddhist organizations associated with a strand of Buddhist modernism called "humanistic Buddhism" use discourse and rhetoric to make environmentalism

This dissertation analyzes the way in which leaders of certain Taiwanese Buddhist organizations associated with a strand of Buddhist modernism called "humanistic Buddhism" use discourse and rhetoric to make environmentalism meaningful to their members. It begins with an assessment of the field of religion and ecology, situating it in the context of secular environmental ethics. It identifies rhetoric and discourse as important but under acknowledged elements in literature on environmental ethics, both religious and secular, and relates this lack of attention to rhetoric to the presence of a problematic gap between environmental ethics theory and environmentalist practice. This dissertation develops a methodology of rhetorical analysis that seeks to assess how rhetoric contributes to alleviating this gap in religious environmentalism. In particular, this dissertation analyzes the development of environmentalism as a major element of humanistic Buddhist groups in Taiwan and seeks to show that a rhetorical analysis helps demonstrate how these organizations have sought to make environmentalism a meaningful subject of contemporary Buddhist religiosity. This dissertation will present an extended analysis of the concept of "spiritual environmentalism," a term developed and promoted by the late Ven. Shengyan (1930-2009), founder of the Taiwanese Buddhist organization Dharma Drum Mountain. Furthermore, this dissertation suggests that the rhetorical methodology proposed herein offers offers a direction for scholars to more effectively engage with religion and ecology in ways that address both descriptive/analytic approaches and constructive engagements with various forms of religious environmentalism.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012