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Global learning for sustainable development in higher education: recent trends and critique
Malmö högskola, School of Teacher Education (LUT), Nature-Environment-Society (NMS).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9613-8132
2009 (English)In: International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, ISSN 1467-6370, E-ISSN 1758-6739, Vol. 10, no 4, p. 368-378Article in journal (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide a synopsis of some major trends that have marked discussions on global learning for sustainable development (GLSD) in higher education. The aim is formulated against the background of the complexity represented in GLSD, as well as the fact that sustainable development (SD) is an issue of global interest for universities. Design/methodology/approach – The authors conducted an overview in recent trends in research on GLSD in higher education over the last 20 years, based on the combination of the keyword higher education for Sustainable Development with global learning (GL) and global education. Findings – The overview suggests that only relatively limited steps have been implemented to achieve GLSD, and rhetoric still dominates the discussions. It appears that little empirical research has been undertaken on learning in global settings. Several authors have identified the need for a competence-based curriculum for GLSD. Originality/value – Universities, professionals and students need to take greater responsibility. How knowledge, values and abilities are formed and developed from the global learner's perspective therefore, remains an open and fundamental question. The paper underlines the crucial role that higher education plays in GL for sustainability. Acknowledgements: This paper has been written with financial support from The Swedish Research Council and the International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics at Lund University, Sweden.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited, 2009. Vol. 10, no 4, p. 368-378
Keywords [en]
Higher education, Learning, Sustainable development, Teaching
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-14526DOI: 10.1108/14676370910990710Local ID: 14490OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mau-14526DiVA, id: diva2:1418047
Available from: 2020-03-30 Created: 2020-03-30 Last updated: 2022-06-27Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Learning and teaching sustainable development in global-local contexts
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Learning and teaching sustainable development in global-local contexts
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The overall aim of this thesis is to develop knowledge of teachingand learning sustainable development in global–local contexts. Theresearch field is global learning for sustainable development (GLSD).Phenomenographic approach and contextual analysis were used asmethods of analysis, and data was collected by Semi-structuredinterviews at secondary and upper secondary schools in Sweden.In Study I, a strategic and systematic literature review was conductedof recent trends and critique to the dominating rhetoric on policy levelconcerning global education and global learning on sustainabilityissues. The complexity represented in GLSD is of global interest toface current challenges. The global–local context and the process forglobal learning were characterised by the learner’s perspective andself-efficacy. The variation of ways in which contextual features wererevealed, affected how participants experienced their own learningglobal learning space. In Study II, empirical investigations were conducted of students’,teachers’, and head teachers’ conceptions of implementation of GLSD.Results indicate that critical knowledge capabilities were needed toact towards sustainability globally. Critical knowledge capabilitiesdeveloped in the processes were to take command and collaborateas a team. Capabilities that were identified as necessary but whichhad not been sufficiently developed were to be prepared, act in atransdisciplinary manner and lead for holistic understanding in thelearning process. Critical knowledge capabilities to handle complexknowledge were characterised by volition, self-directed learning, andknowledge formation. In Study III, a re-analysis was conducted of the data from StudyII. The results shed light on pertinent transition skills in GLSD:(I) transdisciplinary action via knowledge formation in actualpractices, (II) democratic collaborative action via processes ofunderstanding, respectively (III) self-directed learning and independentinitiative. These transition skills, enabling young people to beprepared for unpredictable changes, were perceived as key featuresin developing young people’s capability in an uncertain world. Theydeveloped worldview understanding, and advanced transformationcompetencies including critical reflections upon questions of currentnormativity. In Study IV, collaborative and transdisciplinary teaching with aglobal–local perspective was investigated in a study with teacherscommitted to global learning and sustainable development at anupper secondary school. Two main transdisciplinary teachingapproaches of GLSD were distinguished: Contributing: Assist andTake Part respectively Ownership: Possess and Reconceptualise.The contributing approach was divided into the sub-categories: (I)Disheartened, (II) Supportive, and (III) Complementing teachingapproaches; while the ownership approach comprised (IV) Decisive,and (V) Multi-dimensional teaching approaches. Various dimensions of the results appeared to be relevant forsustainability teaching and learning in global–local contexts, whenconnections between the studies were analysed in relation to the contextand the overarching aims of the thesis. Through transdisciplinaryteaching deep approaches to learning can be developed and Globalteaching for sustainable development (GTSD) could be advanced.Individual and collaborative learning characterised by selfdetermination,responsibility, and social readiness leading to actionemerged as key aspects At a global–local level, there is a growing need to develop competenciesand capabilities for transitions towards sustainability. Conflicts andclimate change are drastically increasing the number of displacedpeople who need transnational education on proactive preventivestrategies, as well as develop to critical knowledge capabilities that can be useful across numerous contexts and in the face of changingcircumstances. Increasingly, also young people need to manage theirown learning processes in self-directed learning, regardless of wherethey are physically or may move in their lifetimes. As established socialstructures struggle to address global challenges, people across theplanet need to be able to organise themselves and to take initiatives.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Malmö högskola, Fakulteten för lärande och samhälle, 2016. p. 134
Series
Malmö Studies in Educational Sciences: Doctoral Dissertation Series, ISSN 1651-4513 ; 77
Keywords
Contextual Analysis, Critical Knowledge Capabilities, Deep approaches to learning, Deep approaches to teaching, Education for Sustainable Development, ESD, Environmental and Sustainabilty Education Research, ESER, Global classrooms, Global learning, Global eduction, Global - local contexts, Global Learning for Sustainable Development, GLSD, Global teaching and learning, Phenomenography, Sustainable Development, SD, sustainability, Teaching Approaches, Transdisciplinary Teaching, Transitions, Transnational education, Online learning, Transnational learning
National Category
Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mau:diva-7579 (URN)20501 (Local ID)9789171046253 (ISBN)9789171046260 (ISBN)20501 (Archive number)20501 (OAI)
Note

Paper IV in dissertation as mansuscript.

Available from: 2020-02-28 Created: 2020-02-28 Last updated: 2024-03-16Bibliographically approved

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