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Your Environmental Philosophy

Use an environmental philosophy matrix to discover which viewpoints you identify with and understand your place in this worldview.

Environmental Philosophy

Have a look at this environmental philosophy matrix developed by Dr Sara Wilkinson, of the University of Technology, Sydney.

Examine each of the areas down the side and highlight which statements align with your own beliefs. Overall, which Stand-point do your beliefs line up with? Transpersonal ecology, deep ecology, moderate ecology, accommodating environmentalism, or cornucopian environmentalism?

You may not necessarily understand all of the terms within this matrix, and that’s OK – it’s pretty deep! Just try to do this with the terms you do understand. You’re also very likely to have views across the spectrum, that don’t quite fit neatly into one philosophy, and that’s OK too.

Table from: Wilkinson S, (2013). Conceptual understanding of sustainability in the Australian property sector. Property Management 31 (3).

Your World View

Now you’ve come up with an environmental philosophy, how does this line up with your worldview?

In this course we will talk a lot of about systems and connectedness. Do you think of yourself as a part of nature, or apart from nature? There is no right or wrong answer here, and this will sometimes depend on the context. Use the exercise you did above and the following questions to prompt your reflection.

Apart from Nature A Part of Nature
I regard what I want to change as “other” I recognise that I am part of the system of what needs to be changed
I look for the one leverage point in our organization and use it to change the organization. I ask, “Who can make this change?” I look for an array of approaches that mutually reinforce each other. I reflect on what interactions will help facilitate change in our system
I use power, structures, and processes to make change. It is my responsibility to come up with the solutions that the organization needs I realize sustainable change flows along lines of relationships and ideas and that people support solutions that they help to create
I only attempt to change things I have the power to control I can effect change every system within and around me because I am connected to the system I want to influence
Table from:
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