• Development management as reflective practice

      Abbott, Dina; Brown, Suzanne; Wilson, Gordon; University of Derby (John Wiley & Sons, 2012-05-29)
      This paper examines development management through the reflections of development managers themselves. They are seen to grapple with the global and local contexts that frame their actions; with operationalising their individual values and ethics about development; and with issues concerning inter-personal and inter-organisational relationships. The paper argues that such reflections potentially form the basis of transformations in learning and development practice. However, for this to happen development managers have to embed their reflections within their work, and conceptualise their relations with other stakeholders beyond operational management challenges towards joint learning opportunities. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    • Disrupting the 'whiteness' of fieldwork in geography

      Abbott, Dina; University of Derby (Blackwell, 2012-05-29)
    • Enhancing online climate change education: distance and conventional university collaboration for a Master's curriculum

      Abbott, Dina; University of Derby (2012-05-29)
      This paper analyses the different ways in which both distance and conventional universities engage with learning and teaching. It argues that rather than seeing their roles as institutionally compartmentalised, there is much benefit in delivering online education through an institutional collaboration which develops synergies with a potential to contribute to citizen and professional practitioner empowerment, in this case, for debates about climate change. The example the paper draws on is that of a European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students (Erasmus) project ‘The Lived experience of climate change (LECH-e): interdisciplinary e-module development and virtual mobility’. The project brings together five distance and three conventional universities across six EU countries, plus the European Association of Distance Teaching Universities (EADTU), to create a Master’s curriculum in the area of climate change. It argues that universities across Europe have complementary strengths, both in terms of their disciplinary expertise and the ways in which they engage with students. Understanding the complex, real-world challenge of climate change requires a holistic approach which draws on these complementary strengths through collaborative work. Keywords: conventional universities; distance-learning universities; Master’s curriculum in climate change; collaboration.
    • Field geographies

      Abbott, Dina; University of Derby (Elsevier, 2012-05-29)
      Epistemological discourses such as those that have emerged from women’s studies (particularly feminism) and development studies have, however, shown geographers that there is a need to challenge the power assumptions embedded in the whole process of research, including methodological choices that can include or exclude. By tracing these discourses and using examples from these two disciplines, this article demonstrates how contemporary geography has taken on board some of the new methodological approaches that have thus transpired. In turn, this has enriched geographical enquiry, which is now, much as the subject itself, seen as a social construct requiring critical reflection and challenge.
    • The lived experience of climate change: creating open educational resources and virtual mobility for an innovative, integrative and competence-based track at Masters level

      Wilson, Gordon; Abbott, Dina; De Kraker, Joop; Salgado Perez, Paquita; de Kraker, J.; Van Scheltinga, Catharein. Terwisscha; University of Derby (Inderscience Publishers, 2012-05-29)
      This paper explores a new integrative approach to climate change education at Masters level. Drawing on the authors’ involvement in a European Union Erasmus project, it is argued that the diversity of knowledge(s) on climate change are a source of active/social learning. The wide variety of disciplinary, sectoral and lived experiential (both individual and collective) knowledge(s) are all considered legitimate in this exercise, the aim of which is to construct new interdisciplinary knowledge from their boundary interfaces. We further argue for a corresponding pedagogy based on developing transboundary competences – the ability to engage in social learning and action through communicative engagement across knowledge boundaries. We acknowledge that the challenges for enacting transboundary competence are considerable when it requires mobility across epistemological, even ontological, boundaries. The challenges are further compounded when the communicative engagement across space and time requires virtual mobility which is ICT-enabled. Nevertheless, meeting them is a normative goal, not only for this expanded, integrative approach to climate change education, but also for a global resolution of climate change itself.
    • Looking beyond the visible: contesting environmental agendas for Mumbai slums

      Abbott, Dina; University of Derby, Department of Development Geography (Oxford University Press, 2009)
      Slums are the most immediate, visible symbols of poverty and environmental degra-dation intertwined in cities. They are a constant reminder of national shame and the state’s incapacity or political will to tackle poverty. In cities where the poor and rich share spaces, the rich will attempt to mentally and morally distance themselves from the slums, often regarding these as eyesores, health hazards, and dens of corruption and immoral behaviour. Yet slums are home to millions, from single householders to intergenerational extended families. Within each slum locality, there is intense social networking to safe¬guard common interest, provide informal services for neighbours and enhance the ability to carry out livelihood opportunities. There is a clear contrast in the way slums are regarded by ‘outsiders’, and those who actually live there. Equally there is a difference in which both outsiders and slum dwellers understand environmental needs. A key question for this chapter is, therefore, what is the contested nature of environ-mental agendas in urban areas and who or what defines it? This chapter draws on Mumbai as an example to argue that within shared spaces, whilst there may be commonality of environmental interests, environmental agendas are often shaped by those who are more powerful and vocal.
    • Special issue: from disciplinarity to interdisciplinarity and beyond in higher education on climate change

      Wilson, Gordon; Abbott, Dina; Open University; University of Derby (Inderscience publishers, 2012-05-31)
      This special issue explores the evolution of an innovative, integrative approach to climate change through collaborative production of an interdisciplinary education curriculum incorporating student mobility. It draws on the authors’ involvement in a European Union Erasmus project, ‘The lived experience of climate change: e-learning and virtual mobility’, which brings together eight universities plus an umbrella association across six countries. The project has developed a set of postgraduate curriculum resources on climate change that will become globally accessible.