Dear colleagues:

Paper abstract submissions are invited for the special session “Alternative Geographies of Environmental and Resource Management” at the upcoming CAG and ESAC 2014 annual meetings and Congress 2014 at Brock University. The session will be sponsored by the CAG Environment and Resources Group, and I hope to secure sponsorship from ESAC.

Alternative Geographies of Environmental and Resource Management

Environmental and resource management is arguably a very practical field. That is, its practitioners and scholars are committed to achieving practicable recommendations and regimes to effectively and equitably manage environmental resources amid competing perceptions, priorities, visions and strategies. In the long century since resource management and modern environmentalism began in North America, alternative schools of thought have evolved in various academic disciplines to challenge dominant discourses of liberalism, governance, progress, democracy and value. In environmental and resource management, the effect was to produce a greater engagement with socio-ecological complexity and inclusion. Geographers have been substantial contributors to this transition, and yet the significance of geographic concepts is often implied but unarticulated in this body of work. There is a need, firstly, to expand the conversation by engaging more deeply and explicitly with the geographic ontologies and epistemologies that infuse environmental and resource management, for example, the production of space, spacetime, everyday life, constructivism, feminism. Secondly, there is a need to demonstrate how the cultural turn and social research in geography and other disciplines can directly inform and improve management practice.

The aim is to collect a diverse collection of papers from specialists from both within and without the field of environmental and resource management that will broaden the scope of the literature. The ultimate goal is to publish papers from this special session into a journal special theme issue.

For added inspiration, the following two articles might be useful:

Gill, N (2006) What is the Problem? Usefulness, the cultural turn, and social research for natural resource management. Australian Geographer 37(1): 5-17.

Reed, M (2007) Seeking red herrings in the wood: tending the shared spaces of environmental and feminist geographies, The Canadian Geographer 51(1): 1-21.

The deadline for submission of special sessions to the CAG is February 14, 2014. However, as I would like to submit this session for consideration by ESAC (deadline in one week on January 24!), your quick expressions of interest or questions would be most appreciated.

Chui-Ling Tam
Session organizer/coordinator and CAG-ERSG co-chair

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Calvin Sandborn

Published on 30 May 2013 by in Conference Archives


Calvin Sandborn  Calvin Sandborn has practiced environmental law in British Columbia for over thirty years, and is Legal Director of the University of Victoria Environmental Law Clinic. He has been:

• Founder of the Farm Workers Legal Services Project
• Legal Counsel to West Coast Environmental Law Association
• Associate to the Commissioner who initiated the doubling of the BC Provincial Park system
• First Legal Counsel to the BC Forest Practices Board
• Chair of the BC Bar Association Law Reform Subcommittee for Sustainable Development.

Sandborn has been counsel on numerous leading environmental cases, and has published widely on environmental law issues, having written Preventing Toxic Pollution: Towards a British Columbia Strategy; Green Space and Growth: Conserving Natural Areas in BC Communities; A Citizen’s Guide to the Environmental Appeal Board; A Citizen’s Guide to FOI; Re-inventing Rainwater Management; Law Reform for Sustainable Development in BC, and Maintaining SuperNatural BC for Our Children: A Law Reform Agenda. He has published numerous influential newspaper articles calling for environmental reform.

He drafted the first endangered species bill ever presented to federal Parliament, in 1990. Among other things, he has successfully advocated for law reform, including B.C.’s first farm worker health and safety regulations, workers compensation coverage for farm workers, BC Hydro’s Power Smart program, Vancouver’s Integrated Pest Management policy, British Columbia’s progressive climate change legislation, the provincial requirement that producers of paints, solvents and pesticides dispose of the used containers, the provincial government’s shift to a comprehensive pollution prevention policy, laws to facilitate the operations of land trusts, and the banning of falcon harvesting.

The City of Victoria recognized Professor Sandborn’s Environmental Law Clinic work by naming him an Honorary Citizen, and he is one of only two lawyers ever awarded the Dr. Andrew Thompson Award for Environmental Advocacy and Protection, the top award for environmental advocacy in British Columbia.

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ESAC Conference Highlights:

Come early for the ESAC Pre-Conference Event June 2: ELIZABETH MAY, Leader of the Green Party and MP for Sannich-Gulf Islands.

June 3: Breakfast Reception and Keynote speaker: To Be Announced

June 4: Public Event in collaboration with the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions: The Benefits of the Carbon Tax

June 4: Wine Cheese and Poster Session

June 5: Public Event in collaboration with the Protected Areas and Poverty Reduction Alliance


REMINDER: Call for Nominations: ESAC’s New ECO-Award

The Environmental Studies Association of Canada (ESAC) is pleased to announce a call for nominations for the newly-created Environmental Community Organizer (ECO-Award).

Each year, the ECO-Award will honour an individual, team, or organization who or that has positively contributed to the field of environmental studies in Canada through community-building, research, knowledge-to-action, or innovations in practice or approaches.

Nominations for or applications from individuals, groups, or organizations who work in interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral teams to advance the field of environmental studies through the development, enhancement, or expansion of innovative collaborations and networks are particularly encouraged.

Nominations will be due electronically on Friday, March 29th, 2013 by midnight (EST) to Ashlee Cunsolo Willox, ESAC Board Member, at ashlee.cunsolo[at]mail.mcgill.ca.

Click here for the application form and here for the Draft Conference schedule.

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Call for Nominations for the 2013 ESAC ECO-Award!

The Environmental Studies Association of Canada (ESAC) is pleased to announce a call for nominations for the Environmental  Community’s Organizer (ECO-Award).

Each year, the ECO-Award will honour an individual, team, or organization who or that has positively contributed to the field of environmental studies in Canada through community-building, research, knowledge-to-action, or innovations in practice or approaches.

This award was created during ESAC’s 2012 annual meeting in Waterloo, Ontario to recognize the outstanding contributions of Ms. Kira Jade Cooper in organizing and facilitating the 2012 ESAC conference, and to celebrate her ability to bring together several different environmentally-oriented groups and organizations through this conference.

The ECO-Award selection committee will evaluate nominees upon the following general criteria:

  • Works within the field of environmental studies in Canada;
  • Contributes to community-building within the field of environmental studies through the creation of partnerships, networks, relationships, and projects;
  • Demonstrates collaborative and reciprocal relationships and partnerships to address issues of importance to the field of environmental studies;
  • Increases environmental awareness through knowledge-sharing and outreach activities;
  • Encourages environmental action and empowers and supports others to become involved in activities related to the field of environmental studies;
  • Promotes the mobilization of knowledge and research to action and practice.

Nominations for or applications from individuals, groups, or organizations who work in interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral teams to advance the field of environmental studies through the development, enhancement, or expansion of innovative collaborations and networks are particularly encouraged.

This award is made possible by a healthy level of participation and membership in the environmental studies community. All nominators and nominees are encouraged to participate in ESAC by maintaining their ESAC memberships or becoming members.

To nominate yourself or others, please follow the directions below.  Nominations will be due electronically on Friday, March 29th, 2013 by midnight (EST) to Ashlee Cunsolo Willox, ESAC Board Member, at ashlee.cunsolo@mail.mcgill.ca. 

Selection for the award will be made by a committee appointed by the ESAC Board. Winners will be notified by the end of April, 2013, and officially announced and honoured at the ESAC conference at the University of Victoria in Victoria, British Columbia as part of Congress 2013.

More information: ECO-AWARD Call for Nominations (PDF)

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Join Us for the 2011 Conference

The Full Program including abstracts for the 2011 ESAC Conference has been released. View the Full Program here, then plan your time according to the one-page conference schedule.

The Keynote Speakers for the Environmental Studies Association of Canada’s 2011 annual conference include Catherine O’Brien, with more to be announced. The theme of this year’s conference is People Places and Sustainability: Exploring Ideas Across Communities.

Catherine O’Brien is known for her fascinating publications on the concept of “Sustainable Happiness.” She will be speaking at our Keynote Cafe on Mon, May 30, 9:00am which is free and open to all Congress participants. As defined by O’Brien, Sustainable Happiness is “happiness that contributes to individual, community and/or global well-being and does not exploit other people, the environment, or future generations.” The concept merges principles from sustainability and happiness studies, encouraging individuals, communities and organizations to reflect on opportunities to leave a legacy of sustainable happiness. O’Brien not only writes articles, but also has created a framework for educators to incorporate the concept of sustainable happiness into the curriculum.

Space is limited for all keynote addresses, contact Tara Goetze (tcgoetze@mac.com) to reserve a spot.

If you have not yet registered to attend the Environmental Studies Association of Canada, you can do so by visiting the Fedcan Congress 2011 website. Be sure to take advantage of discounted Early Bird rates and register by March 31st.

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ESAC Conference 2011 – People, Places and Sustainability: Exploring Ideas Across Communities


Environmental Studies Association of Canada (ESAC)

2011 Annual Conference
University of New Brunswick and St. Thomas University
May 30 – 31, 2011

People, Places and Sustainability: Exploring Ideas Across Communities

Download your 11×17 copy of the promotional poster here in English or French!

The Full Conference Program and Schedule of the ESAC Conference has been released and is available for download at your convenience.

The Environmental Studies Association of Canada (ESAC) is pleased to invite you to submit a paper or poster proposal for its annual conference, held in conjunction with the 2011 Congress of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, at the University of New Brunswick and St. Thomas University in Fredericton, NB.

As Canada’s leading association of researchers and practitioners involved in a broad range of environmental fields, ESAC aims for its conferences to facilitate constructive dialogue across a range of environment-related fields and practices. The 2011 ESAC conference provides a unique opportunity for delegates to take part in a lively exchange of ideas relating to sustainability among a broad range of concerned/involved communities, including academics, students, practitioners, policy makers, local citizens, entrepreneurs and activists.

This year’s conference theme, “People, Places and Sustainability: Exploring Ideas Across Communities”, highlights the terms ‘sustainable’, ‘sustainably’, ‘sustainability’, which have become increasingly embedded – and contested – in popular discourse around the world. The concept of ‘sustainability’ is being mobilized by various actors in myriad contexts around the globe, from environmental NGOs, to businesses ‘greenwashing’ products and services, to development agencies. At the same time, increasing attention is focused on the need to reconsider the sustainability of economic, political, and social systems, (greening business; social capitalism; steady state economics; cooperative resource management; ‘deliberate simplicity’ movement, etc.), creating a broadening understanding of what is meant by the term ‘sustainability’ and the factors that contribute to its realization.

The 2011 ESAC conference seeks to promote discussion of the multiple dimensions, meanings and facets of sustainability. We encourage the participation of individuals and groups working in various environment-related fields, including international development, economics, policy studies, history, indigenous studies, geography, resource management, conservation, planning, anthropology, sociology, business, international relations and political science, among others.

Members of NGOs, community groups, the public and private sector, along with academic researchers and students are encouraged to submit papers, posters, and/or organize panels on a broad range of issues and case studies related to the social dimensions of sustainability such as:
· Politics of Environmental Knowledges (traditional, local, scientific)
· Sustainable Development (urban, rural, energy, resource use, food systems)
· Climate Change
· Community Resilience
· Sustainable Livelihoods
· Ecosystem Goods and Services
· Indigenous Peoples and Environment
· Policy and Sustainability (international, national, municipal)
· Gender and Environment
· Environmental Education
· Resource Management / Conservation
· Economics of Sustainability (consumption, production, marketing)
· Social Movements (deliberate simplicity, intentional communities)
· Historical Perspectives
· Human Security and Conflict

The deadline for abstract submissions is February 15, 2011.
The paper or poster abstract must be 300 words or less, and should include:
· your name, position and institution;
· your title and a description of your object of study;
· your theoretical framework and methodology of research;
· your conclusions;
· the relevance of your topic to sustainability or environmental studies.

Panel or roundtable proposals may be submitted using the following form available in English or French. Please submit proposals to Tara Goetze, Conference Chair: tcgoetze@mac.com

All proposals will be evaluated by the ESAC conference committee. Acceptance emails will be sent out in early March.
You must be an ESAC member in good standing to present a paper or poster at the conference. once accepted, all presenters must also register for the conference via the  congress website. Conference registration is ongoing until June 4, 2011.

Travel grants will be available to qualifying presenters.  You must fill out and submit an application form before February 1, 2011 to be eligible for a travel grant.

Further details regarding conference registration, accommodations, social events, etc. will be distributed in subsequent announcements. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Tara C. Goetze, PhD
ESAC 2011 Conference Chair

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Photos from the ESAC 2010 Conference

Join us in revisiting the wonderful time had by all at the ESAC 2010 conference at Concordia University in Montreal. Feel free to share your experiences and impressions of the conference in the comments section. A special thank you to the photographer Shirley Thompson, the Communications Director of ESAC for sharing these pictures.

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Thanks to our keynote speaker Elizabeth May, panelists, delegate presenters, poster contest contributors, and special thanks to our book publishers for their kind book donations that were distributed as prizes, and thank you to all contributors of the ESAC conference 2010: Sustainability in a Changing World.

To look at the final schedule at a glance click here.

To get a full picture of the event see the abstracts here.

Read coverage of the event at greenlivingonline.com.

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2010 ESAC Conference Schedule Released

Please note that the official agenda for the 2010 ESAC Conference has been released. There will be fascinating panel on a wide range of topics, from: ‘Food Policy and Sustainability’ to ‘Gender and Environment’ to ‘Climate Change in Bangladesh’, plus our outstanding Keynote Speakers Camilla Toulmin, Bina Agarwal and Desiree McGraw. The conference schedule is available for download here.

View the Full Schedule.

Panels include:
“Good Science and/or a Darn Good Read”

Widely accused of scientific dishonesty, Bjorn Lomborg, is nonetheless the author of an award-winning, best-selling, money-making book. The Skeptical Environmentalist, as Lomborg and his infamous book are known, may represent the extreme, but journalists, authors, TV and radio commentators are regularly faced with the dilemma of not bogging down a good story in scientific facts. For, as Stephen Bocking writes in Alternatives Journal, “While scientists can tell us about the extinction of species and the loss of Arctic sea ice, we need stories to help us make sense of these events.

This panel of three environmental communicators will discuss the tricks of the trade when it comes to good environmental story-telling and news reporting. They will highlight the best of environmental writing and point out the blunders. Nicola Ross, executive editor of Alternatives Journal, will lead the panel in a highly energetic thought-provoking discussion before inviting the audience to join in.

Panel Moderator:

  • Nicola Ross, editor-in-chief of Alternatives Journal, will lead a panel of talented environmental writers and some of Canada’s brightest eco-intellects in an energetic discussion of good environmental writing. Come prepared to be entertained and informed. And don’t forget to bring along a few questions about how to get your environmental stories into the news.

Panelists include:

  • Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada and author of seven books including How to Save the World in Your Spare Time, is an outspoken advocate for the environment. If anyone knows how to spin a story, it’s Elizabeth.
  • Wayne Roberts manages the Toronto Food Policy Council, has written three books and writes a weekly column in NOW Magazine. He is a member of Alternatives’ editorial board and one of Canada’s most original thinkers on food policy. He’s also very funny.
  • Monique Beaudin is an environmental writer with the Montreal Gazette. She is also an active blogger who is comfortable sending out tweets.

For more information on the 2010 ESAC Conference: ‘Sustainability in a Changing World’, which is being held at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec from May 31st to June 1st, please click here.

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ESAC Conference 2010 ‘Sustainability in a Changing World’

Theme: Sustainability in a Changing World
Location: Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec
May 31 – June 1, 2010

We invite you to participate in the 2010 ESAC conference. It’s part of the 2010 Congress for the broad range of bodies that fall under the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences.

People from community groups, NGOs, practitioners, policy makers, (and of course the drivers of the conference: academics and students) are welcome to attend and actively participate. If you are interested in issues that involve climate change, food security, natural resources, millennium development goals, environmental health, environmental literacy and journalism tips that encompass all of the above, then this conference is for you.

View the Full Schedule.

In the spirit of passion for the planet and networking with your environment community, please join us at Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec – May 31 to June 1, 2010

Cost of Attendance:
Member: $60
Non-Member: $90
Retired Member: $40
Retired Non-Member: $50
Student/Unwaged Member: $30
Student/Unwaged Non-Member: $40
Banquet: $35

Click here to complete your registration.

When registering for Congress 2010, one of the drop-down options will be to attend our banquet at the Spanish Club, scheduled for the evening of June 1st, that includes tapas and the choice of paella, lamb or a vegetarian option with a band and late night party with Canadian Association of Studies in International Development (CASID) for a cost of $35. This is an excellent opportunity for you to network and/or socialize with student and faculty colleagues.

Any questions please contact:
Dr. Shirley Thompson,
Natural Resources Institute, University of Manitoba,
70 Dysart Rd.,
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3T 2N2
phone: (204) 474-7170 fax: 204-261-0038
e-mail: s_thompson@umanitoba.ca

ESAC ACEE call for proposals

ESAC ACEE 2010 Paper Proposal Form


Accommodation Information

Informational Poster Contest

Travel Grant Application


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