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Hauptsachtitel:
What do we say when we talk about sustainability?: Analyzing faculty, staff and student definitions of sustainability at one American university.
Zeitschriftenausgabe (-> Ref.Nr):
Zeitschrift/Zeitung:
International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education
Z-Jahrgang:
16
Z-Heftnummer/-bez.:
3
Erscheinungsjahr:
Seite (von-bis):
367-384
Kurzinfo:
Purpose
– The purpose of this paper is to analyze how faculty, staff and students at one American University define the term sustainability.

Design/methodology/approach
– The authors analyze student, staff and faculty definitions by comparing word frequency counts to a list of the 25 most frequently found words in over 100 definitions of sustainability. Next, the authors analyze the definitions through content analysis, producing a list of emergent themes.

Findings
– The authors find that our definitions do not rate highly when compared to a list of the most frequent words from published definitions, but examining them more closely highlights nuances in understanding.

Research limitations/implications
– These results can only speak to one university′s population, but may be similar to that of comparable schools. Further studies should include comparisons to a range of campus communities, including environmental leaders and laggards.

Practical implications
– Administrators and educators at institutes of higher education must determine whether an ambiguous understanding of sustainability is sufficient for their own goals in producing an educated citizenry.

Social implications
– When a community fails to understand sustainability, it impacts how they conceptualize environmental problems and make decisions to solve them.

Originality/value
– This study shows that unless one has polled a campus population, one cannot know how its members understand a fundamental concept such as sustainability. It also shows that the work of sustainability education is just beginning.
Original-Quelle (URL):
DOI:
10.1108/IJSHE-06-2013-0055
Datum des Zugriffs:
12.04.2018