We are delighted that SSM has inspired Susan Brown to write: ‘How can education help to shape a Steady State culture? A Discussion Paper’. We highly recommend that supporters read it. Below, and in more detail in the summary at the beginning of the paper, we draw your attention to its richness and contribute to the discussion that she advocates.
Briefly Susan’s paper
- Argues that a learning renaissance is required to achieve a Steady State culture. A transition from the current role of education ‘to ensure a workforce able to compete in a global market’ to one where people ‘ play full roles in developing sustainable local economies’
- Includes an accessible, broad, diverse, inclusive vision of a Steady State education culture which responds to the initiatives and issues of local communities. It is brought to life by descriptions of existing educational initiatives from near and far which are ‘which are changing the learning landscape in ways that can shape a Steady State Culture.’
- Moves from a very individualistic, competitive form of current education to a collective endeavourThe paper has both developed our understanding and raised questions we want to explore further including:Is education ‘any communications and/or activity intended to have a formative effect on the way we think, feel and act.’? Would examining other areas that have demanded massive cultural change this understanding? For example, the abolition of slavery, the peace agreement in Northern Ireland, ending apartheid in S. Africa and/or reducing prevalence of smoking or encouraging wearing of seat belts?
Public health has been wrestling with the issue of cultural change for decades. Hard, costly, time consuming lessons have been learned. Can we learn from them too? One of these is we need to start from people’s lives, not the issue.
Does a Freirean approach have a part to play?
Read a more detailed summary of this blog and the paper ‘How can education help to shape a Steady State culture? A Discussion Paper’.
We welcome your contributions to the discussion. We are planning community conversations about viable economy issues in 2016. Have you a suggestion for an issue to discuss stimulated by Susan’s paper and/or this blog?