The ‘connecting children and nature network’: building a collaborative partnership for change

Kemp, N. (2015) The ‘connecting children and nature network’: building a collaborative partnership for change. Local Economy. pp. 1-9.

16840a_Connecting Children and Nature- FINAL September 2014.pdf - Accepted Version

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This paper explores the current public and policy interest in ‘children and nature’ from the perspective of a Higher Education Institution. It offers a conceptualisation of concern based on two competing discourses: one of environmental crisis; the other a crisis of childhood. It goes on to argue that rather than being in conflict, the two discourses are actually mutually reinforcing.

An implication is that this is an agenda that requires an inter-disciplinary approach requiring those whose primary interest is in the environment to come together with those whose starting point is
the child. This conceptual understanding underpins the approach adopted by one UK University in the ‘Connecting Children and Nature Network’.

This initiative is an example of how small-scale seed funding can generate significant impacts and is innovative because of its cross-disciplinary support. It is also an example of how Education for Sustainable Development can be embedded through a tripartite model of engagement, teaching and learning, research and knowledge exchange activity.

Since its inception further funding has been secured to support the Network and to develop a range of collaborative activities. Although successful, the process of building a partnership has been complex, revealing competing perspectives and agendas.

The paper ends with a discussion of some of the lessons learnt and reflects on managing the partnership-building process as an Higher Education Institution.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Education > School of Childhood and Education Sciences
Depositing User: Dr Nicola Kemp
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2018 16:56
Last Modified: 19 Jan 2018 09:22

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00