Annotated Bibliography of Books on Sustainability in Higher Ed Compiled by Jean MacGregor, Kim McNamara, and Natalie Pyrooz Last Updated Spring 2008 The three lists of books below, on Sustainability on Campus, Sustainability (general), and Engaged Citizenship, are in alphabetical order by author last name, and precede a more detailed compilation of full text citations complemented with a brief summary and annotation. Click the text below to link directly to the full citation. Sustainability on Campus Barlett, P. & Chase, G. ed. (2004) Sustainability on campus: stories and strategies for change Blewitt, John and Cedric Cullingford, eds. (2004) The Sustainability Curriculum: The challenge for education Bowers, C. (1997) The Culture of Denial: Why the Environmental Movement Needs a Strategy for Reforming Universities and Public Schools Bowers, C. (1993). Education, Cultural Myths, and the Ecological Crisis Creighton, Sarah Hammond. (1999) Greening the Ivory Tower: Improving the Track Record of Universities, Colleges, and Other Institutions Collett, Jonathon and Stephen Karakashian, eds. (1996) Greening the College Curriculum Corcoran, Peter Blaze, and Arjen E.J. Wals, eds. (2004) Higher Education and the Challenge of Sustainability M’Gonigle, Michael, and Justine Starke. (2006) Planet U: Sustaining the World, Reinventing the University Rappaport, Ann, and Sarah Hammond Creighton. (2007) Degrees that Matter Sustainability (General) Brown, Lester. (2008) Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization Daly, Herman E. and John B. Cobb Jr. (1989) For the Common Good: Redircting the Economy toward Community, the Environment, and a Sustainable Future Dobson, Andrew, and Derek Bell, eds. (2006) Environmental Citizenship Epstein, Marc J. (2008) Making Sustainability Work Edwards, Andres R. (2005) The Sustainability Revolution: Portrait of a Paradigm Shift Gallagher, Winifred. (1993) The Power of Place: How our Surroundings Shape our Thoughts, Emotions, and Actions Hawken, Paul, Amory Lovins, and L. Hunter Lovins. (1999) Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution Korten, David C. (2006) The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community Kuntsler, James Howard. (1996) Home from Nowhere: Remaking our Everyday World for the Twenty-First Century Marten, Gerald G. (2001) Human Ecology: Basic Concepts for Sustainable Development McDonough, William and Michael Braungart. (2002) Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things Putman, Andrea and Michael Philips. (2006) The Business Case for Renewable Energy Schor, Juliet B. and Betsy Taylor, eds. (2002) Sustainable Planet: Solutions for the Twenty-First Century Thomashow, Mitchell. (2002) Bringing the Biosphere Home Wackernagel, Mathis, and William Rees. (1996) Our Ecological Footprint Engaged Citizenship Berry, Joyce K. and John C. Gordon, eds. (1993) Environmental Leadership: Developing Effective Skills and Styles Hondale, George. (1999) How Context Matters: Linking environmental policy to people and place Noddings, Nel, ed. (2005) Educating Citizens for Global Awareness Annotated Citations Barlett, Peggy and Geoffrey Chase, eds. (2004) Sustainability on Campus: Stories and Strategies for Change. Cambridge: MIT Press. 327 pp. These personal narratives of greening college campuses offer inspiration, motivation, and practical advice. Written by faculty, staff, administrators, and a student, from varying perspectives and reflecting divergent experiences, these stories also map the growing strength of a national movement toward environmental responsibility on campus. Each account indicates the challenges and struggles that the individual or team has faced in the effort to implement sustainable practices on campus, and the strategies and strength it has taken to overcome adversity and skepticism. These candid stories are very instructive for anyone getting started. Bauer, Joanne, Ed. (2006) Forging Environmentalism: Justice, Livelihood, and Contested Environments. London: East Gate Publications. 427 pp. Case studies and comparative analysis come together in this text on environmental values and policies in the United States, Japan, China, and India. Aiming to increase understanding of global environmental values and concerns, this collaborative work explores how these ideologies are expressed through the fabric of very different social and cultural contexts. International contributors synthesize cross-national values and related policy actions. Berry, Joyce K. and John C. Gordon, eds. (1993) Environmental Leadership: Developing Effective Skills and Styles. Washington DC: Island Press. 286 pp. This collection of essays discusses the value of environmental leadership and role of conservationists when much of wilderness is in peril. Serving as a guide for aspiring environmental leaders, it is written by deep-rooted members of the movement representing: the federal government, international organizations, NGOs, and local, grassroots movements. Bridging corporate and academic worlds, the compilation of essays depict balanced perspectives on conservation, foundations, and funding. To conclude the text, Berry and Gordon summarize common themes: 1) be both a leader and a follower; 2) think about change; 3) develop breadth and flexibility; 4) learn to listen; 5) set an ethical example; 6) be a lifelong learner. Blewitt, John and Cedric Cullingford, eds. (2004) The Sustainability Curriculum: The Challenge for Education. London: Earthscan. 258 pp. Academia can have a profound impact on the advancement of sustainable practices when they are employed in our schools, organizations, and daily lives. Additionally, concepts and practices of sustainable development influence the future of many academic fields and disciplines, collegiate institutional practices, and methods of study. This text particularly focuses on disciplinary study and lifelong learning. It questions the purpose and nature of higher education itself and considers the place of sustainability therein. Conversely, the text looks at the meaning of sustainability as it stands alone as well as its context within multiple disciplines. It discusses the negative potential of ‘sustainability’ as a catch-word at risk of becoming cliché. It concludes with a dialogue of how disciplines have responded to the sustainability agenda as it has been implemented thus far, and where it can go. Bowers, C. (1997) The Culture of Denial: Why the Environmental Movement Needs a Strategy for Reforming Universities and Public Schools. Albany: State University of New York Press. 277 pp. According to Bowers, education as an institution needs to be fundamentally reworked to end its reinforcement of a “consumer culture in denial.” Bowers’ provocative propositions provoke critical thought regarding the place of education in the sustainability movement. He critiques the anthropocentric and individualistic stance assumed in many classrooms, our increasing dependence on technology, and our use of language, and then contrasts the accepted ideology of the Western world with themes from ecologically centered cultures. This text is much more theoretical than applied. The central foci are that “it is absolutely imperative that what is learned in public schools and universities be made a central concern of the environmental movement,” and we must adopt “workable strategies for integrating the educational process into the larger talk of changing from a culture that exploits the environment to one that can live within sustainable limits.” Bowers, C. (1995) Educating for an Ecologically Sustainable Culture: Rethinking Moral Education, Creativity, Intelligence, and Other Modern Orthodoxies. Albany: State University of New York Press. 233 pp. Another heavily theoretical text by C. A. Bowers, this time addressing the disconnect between Western civilizations’ ideas and values, the consumer life- style, the depletion of natural resources, and the accumulation of toxicity in the atmosphere. Although ecological problems are becoming increasingly evident, the progress towards behavioral and social change within a culture takes time. The role of education is crucial, as core cultural values are instilled in all levels of the educational institution. While important for contributing towards functioning in the modern world, the technological and urban-based skills that are often emphasized leave the general population lacking essential knowledge for participating in a bioregional or community-centered lifestyle. This text critiques long-held beliefs and assumptions that guide the processes of building theory and generating inquiry, of setting educational goals, and defining classroom practices. It moves on to assess moral education, especially as applied to ecological literacy and the place of the individual. Further, it evaluates the place of creativity within different cultures are contrasts individualistic creativity with that which embeds the artist in culture and in the surrounding environment. Overall, the text advocates the place of the individual as an interactive member of a larger and more complex mental ecology that emphasizes the culture/environment relationship. Brown, Lester. (2008) Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization. New York: Earth Policy Institute. 398 pp. With business as usual (Plan A) posing mounting problems for both the economy and the environment, Plan B 3.0 offers solutions for stabilizing climate, restoring the environment, stabilizing populations, and eliminating poverty. After depicting the nature and urgency of current global dilemmas, the text largely focuses on how to overcome these challenges. Outlining plans that consider such varied yet interdependent issues as education, health, farming, forestry, fisheries, biodiversity, carbon, water, transportation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy, this presents a comprehensive package of international examples and well-researched resolutions. Collett, Jonathon and Stephen Karakashian, eds. (1996) Greening the College Curriculum: A Guide to Environmental Teaching in the Liberal Arts: A Project of the Rainforest Alliance. Washington D.C.: Island Press. 341 pp. Greening the College Curriculum provides the tools college and university faculty need to meet personal and institutional goals for integrating environmental issues into the curriculum. Leading educators from a wide range of fields, including anthropology, biology, economics, geography, history, literature, journalism, philosophy, political science, and religion, describe their experience introducing environmental issues into their teaching. This book includes extensive resources: films, books, periodicals, lesson plans, and course plans. Although over ten years old, it will be a useful reference tool for those aiming to bring environmental issues into a wide range of disciplines. Corcoran, Peter Blaze, and Arjen E.J. Wals, eds. (2004). Higher Education and the Challenge of Sustainability: Problematics, Promise, and Practice. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers. 355 pp. This book draws on an international team of contributors from Canada, Denmark, South Africa, the Netherlands, U.S., U.K., and Australia. It argues that sustainability challenges universities around the world to rethink their missions and to re-structure their courses, research programs, and life on campus. Graduates are increasingly exposed to notions of sustainability, which are emotionally, politically, ethically, and scientifically charged. They must be able to contextualize knowledge in an increasingly globalized society. Sustainability is not only explored as an outcome and a process of learning, but also as a catalyst for educational change and institutional innovation. The book raises the various problematics related to this inchoate field and provides an intellectual history and critical assessment of the prospects for institutionalizing sustainability in higher education. Creighton, Sarah Hammond. (1999) Greening the Ivory Tower: Improving the Track Record of Universities, Colleges, and Other Institutions. London: MIT Press. 337 pp. When Tufts University received a grant from the EPA to reduce environmental impacts pertaining to university operation, the recipient research group identified key areas where their influence could have the most profound and lasting effects. Examining issues such as food waste, transportation, and energy, the team narrowed in on a multifaceted approach to green the school. Greening the Ivory Tower shares strategies and lessons learned from this body of knowledge, as well as tactics used in selected higher education institutions, to assist leaders on other campuses seeking to reduce environmental impacts. Covering baseline data collection, buildings and grounds development, adjustments to purchasing and dining, and modifications to research facilities, studios and academic departments, this text can assist a motivated campus citizen to create change in many capacities. Daly, Herman E. and John B. Cobb Jr. (1989) For the Common Good: Redircting the Economy toward Community, the Environment, and a Sustainable Future. Boston: Beacon Press. 482 pp. Often seen at odds, this text encourages economists to adopt a perspective that integrates sustainable paradigms into the discipline. Divided into four parts, the book discusses: 1) Economics as a science, its characteristics as a discipline, and its role as a deductive model; 2) An alternative approach to the economy which shifts away from the capitalism-socialism struggle, and towards community systems; 3) The implementation of this alternative approach through policy; and 4) Strategies for creating the change needed to move towards the alternative economy. This alternative shifts economic theory from its traditional disciplinary abstractions to a lived reality through community service. Dense but rewarding prose covers economic perspectives on land use, agriculture, industry, labor, population, international trade, taxes, and security. Epstein, Marc J. (2008) Making Sustainability Work. Sheffield, UK: Greenleaf Publishing Ltd. 288 pp. A handbook for anyone moving their organization towards a more sustainable future, this text provides guidance for those who consider keeping their competitive place in the market as important as managing their social, economic, and environmental impacts. Covering topics as diverse and urgent as global thinking, outsourcing, philanthropy, and risk assessment, the text guides progressive thought for sustainable business practices. Not only does it provide foundations for measuring social and environmental risks and impacts, it describes how to move forward in acting upon change. Where other books address the “whys” of the triple bottom line of sustainability (social, environmental, and economic impacts), this text focuses on the “how-tos.” Combining progressive academic research with proven corporate practice from around the globe, it is a comprehensive discussion of implementation strategies that are working towards a sustainable future. At the core of the text is the Corporate Sustainability Model framework, adaptable to individual organizations, which aids in executing, managing, and measuring sustainability performance. While primarily written for businesses, this text is useful for higher ed audiences. Dobson, Andrew, and Derek Bell, eds. (2006) Environmental Citizenship. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. 296 pp. This book is a reworked collection of papers from the 2003 Citizenship and the Environment Workshop at the First Annual Environmental Politics conference at Newcastle University. Sixteen contributors from diverse fields provide perspectives on how to elicit change through citizenship. Using a multidisciplinary perspective, this text examines the relationship between sustainability and responsible citizenry. Whereas many environmental initiatives operate on market-based strategies and self-interest, this text advocates for personal commitment and responsibility. It presents a combination of theory and case studies, obstacles and opportunities. Reconsidering the relationships between society and nature and between local and global, this book poses questions on developing critical citizens rather than merely law-abiding citizens, and re- examines the values needed for genuine environmental citizenship. Edwards, Andres R. (2005) The Sustainability Revolution: Portrait of a Paradigm Shift. Gabriola Island, BC: New Society Publishers. 206 pp. In this clear primer on sustainability, Edwards argues that the “sustainability revolution” is the most profound social transformation of the modern era and it is already under way. Edwards draws connections between various sectors, including business, government, and academia, the text draws connections between sustainability and commerce, community, natural resources, design, and the biosphere. He argues that for sustainability to come into focus in these multivarious disciplines, a major shift in cultural values must emerge. The book draws together the history of the term sustainability, major sustainability frameworks and principles, and points to the multiple arenas (organic foods, ecological architecture, alternative energy, etc.) where sustainability is emerging. Gallagher, Winifred. (1993) The Power of Place: How our Surroundings Shape our Thoughts, Emotions, and Actions. New York: Poseidon Press. 240 pp. Weaving environmental studies with psychology, Gallagher dissects the connections between people and place. Human response to the physical world, particularly as light, temperature, and seasonal change strongly affects our health and our emotions. Additionally, our environment and surroundings, be it metropolitan New York or rural Kentucky, affects our well-being, creativity, and sensory stimulation. Accessible reading with scientific context, Gallagher employs terminology from psychology in a way that is easy to understand yet conveys complex principles. Hawken, Paul, Amory Lovins, and L. Hunter Lovins. (1999) Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution. New York: Little, Brown and Company. 396 pp. Capitalism has been criticized for its role in advancing environmental destruction, but Natural Capitalism provides the framework for how slight changes to the rules in our capitalist economy can encourage significant, positive environmental change. From tax incentives to investing in natural capital, the text demonstrates through global examples how the current economic system, through progressive policy decisions, can lead businesses and corporations to make decisions that are constructive in solving the problems face in pursuing a sustainable future. Hondale, George. (1999) How Context Matters: Linking environmental policy to people and place. West Hartford, Connecticut: Kumarian Press. 222 pp. Policy is a primary driver of how our natural resources will be protected and how sustainable development practices can be implemented. While many policies that are implemented are universalistic, Hondale argues for policy that is integrated with the context of the place and people that are directly affected by it. The cultural and ecological milieu is vital to policy because: a) a strategy for success in one locale may lead to disaster in another; b) the processes by which policy is created are influenced by social and bioregional; and c) contextual maps aid in the execution of policy. This well organized, engaging book explains the theory behind the need for contextually based policy as well as provides examples of its execution. Korten, David C. (2006) The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community. Bloomfield, CT: Kumarian Press, Inc. 402 pp. In order to transform our economic institutions, this highly idealistic text argues, we also have to look at the influence of culture and politics. Initially, Korten looks back to the development of the Empire. “Empire,” as Korten describes it, is the organization of society through hierarchy and violence that has presided for the past 5,000 years. Korten traces the roots of empire throughout history, while engaging the reader in the parallel story of the attempt to develop a democratic alternative. Then, Korten turns to the current challenges the United States is facing within our institutions and global presence. It concludes with a framework for building a new era, which Korten calls Earth Community. This new age will bring together citizen action, grassroots leadership, and democracy that is infused into cultural, economic, and political processes. Kuntsler, James Howard. (1996) Home from Nowhere: Remaking our Everyday World for the Twenty-First Century. New York: Simon & Schuster. 318 pp. In a follow-up to his 1994 book Geography of Nowhere, Kuntsler addresses both problems and solutions to the built environment of modern American urban and suburban design. Themes throughout the book include: outdoor rooms and the use of outdoor space, zoning concerns, development via sprawl vs. gridded city blocks, neighborhood designs and walking neighborhoods, and integrated vs. separated activities. The central argument of the text encourages creating a better daily living environment within our surroundings, and describes technical suggestions for achieving this. Marten, Gerald G. (2001) Human Ecology: Basic Concepts for Sustainable Development. London: Earthscan Publications Ltd. 238 pp. A comprehensive textbook on the science of the interactions between humans and the environment. Bridging the gap between natural and social sciences, this text describes the basic concepts of ecosystem function and how societies relate to their environment. Merging ecological principles with complex systems theory, the book examines how social processes, institutions, and technologies either conflict with or contribute to sustainable development. Beginning with an introduction of concepts and terminology used to discuss ecological interactions and human ecology, the text then examines the history of humans’ relationship with their surroundings. In regarding the ecosystem as a cohesive, complex system, it is possible to see parallels between succession in ecosystems and in human environments. Not only does this illuminate our relationship to ecosystem services, it reveals our shifting perceptions of nature throughout history. The text concludes on a hopeful note with examples of ecologically sustainable development. An extensive list of further reading is included. McDonough, William and Michael Braungart. (2002) Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things. New York: North Point Press. 193 pp. Revolutionary thinking for modern day design of our products, service-industries, and lifestyles, this text refutes the common acceptance of limited product-life of the everyday items we use. Instead of “cradle-to-grave” product lives (i.e. using virgin resources to create a product with a relatively short use period and then throwing it away), McDonough and Braungart advocate a “cradle-to-cradle” attitude: that all products be created to be taken apart so that their resources can be used once more. It also calls to question our modes of thinking about ownership, instead standing in favor of renting, servicing, and eventual re-use of many products. A critical primer for anyone interested in sustainability, Cradle to Cradle will change your views on the things we use and how we use them. M’Gonigle, Michael, and Justine Starke. (2006) Planet U: Sustaining the World, Reinventing the University. Gabriola Island: New Society Publishers. 270 pp. This book’s central argument is that, in the modern world, the university is in a unique position to serve as a catalyst for innovation: it holds the key for practical action. The story of sustainability interweaves diverse techniques of applicable knowledge, integration of institutional power, social change, ecological governance, and developing ideologies of how to live. A call for “active theory” is evident throughout the text. Major themes are the history and role of the university and its evolving place in society, and where the university will be situated in the unfolding dialogue of a sustainable future. In addition to illustrating the potential of the university to be a leader through campus initiatives on clean energy, sustainable development, and transportation spanning multiple nations, this text explores the campus’ ability for social and environmental change. Nel Noddings, ed. (2005) Educating Citizens for Global Awareness. New York: Teachers College Press. 161 pp. What is global citizenship? What does it mean, how does it affect our lives, and how should it be integrated into curriculum? A diverse group of educators address these questions and offer their perspectives on how to bring global concerns into a multiple aspects of curricula. The global concerns include economic and social justice, sustainability and the protection of our natural resources, the preservation of diversity: social, cultural, and biological, and peacekeeping. Specific chapters confront how gender perspectives and personal experience play a role in developing global citizenship, and the role of religious pluralism in opening up dialogue. Conflict resolution, peaceable classrooms, and place-based education are also discussed. Putman, Andrea and Michael Philips. (2006) The Business Case for Renewable Energy: A Guide to Colleges and Universities. Alexandria, VA: APPA. 153 pp. Written by a pair of energy consultants, this resource guides higher education leaders toward an alternative energy future. The book lays out 1) the need for clean energy and the benefits in moving towards alternative sources; 2) incentives and initiatives that have played a role in the movement; 3) practical advice related to renewable technologies and financing options. A must-have guide for every institution moving towards alternative energy sources. Rappaport, Ann, and Sarah Hammond Creighton. (2007) Degrees that Matter: Climate Change and the University. Cambridge: The MIT Press. 372 pp. This text serves as a guide for implementing “climate action” in various contexts: buildings, emissions, curricula, student affairs, transportation. The authors present a coherent argument for the university’s responsibility to take a leading role in the climate crisis and provide extensive examples of work under way. A wealth of examples from colleges across the nation supplement practical suggestions for change. Schor, Juliet B. and Betsy Taylor, eds. (2002) Sustainable Planet: Solutions for the Twenty-First Century. Boston: Beacon Press. 273 pp. Solution-based, this collection of essays targets sustainability on a global scale while revealing changes we can make in our own lives. A publication of the Center for a New American Dream, the text carries the organization’s messages: consume responsibly, protect the environment, promote social justice, and advance quality of life. Diverse contributors cover a variety of thought-provoking topics overflowing with promise for a better, brighter future. Thomashow, Mitchell. (2002). Bringing the Biosphere Home: Learning to Perceive Global Environmental Change. Cambridge: The MIT Press. 244 pp. Written in an exploratory fashion, Thomashow asks the reader to perceive global issues at a deeper level through “learning the local”. Thomashow’s argument is that global ideas, problems, and issues can become so abstract that students do not have a meaningful way to move forward. The best way to learn how to perceive the biosphere is by paying close attention to the place where you live – developing familiarity and intimacy with local natural history. Learning the natural history and ecological patterns of one’s home-place can provide the scaffolding for more complex global understandings and environmental care. Wackernagel, Mathis, and William Rees. (1996) Our Ecological Footprint: Reducing Human Impact on the Earth. Gabriola Island, BC: New Society Publishers. 160 pp. These two authors are the inventors of the Ecological Footprint concept: a method to measure and account for the flows of energy and matter to and from any defined economy and converts these into the corresponding land/water area required from nature to support these flows. For the earth’s population to persist at a level of consumption equivalent to the average person in the United States, the authors argue that we would need at least two more planets. In addition to discussing the rationale for Ecological Footprint concept, the text explains Footprint calculations and applications, and links these to a general list of strategies to develop sustainability.
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