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Posts Tagged ‘writting collective’

Can Science Writing Collectives Overcome Barriers to More Democratic Communication and Collaboration? Lessons from Environmental Communication Praxis in Southern Appalachia

February 23, 2015 Comments off

As some of my other posts show, I have been interested in how writing collectives can operate and say different things than single or multi-authored writing projects.  This new paper reflects of efforts out of the Coweeta Listening Project’s (CLP) experience having written many newspaper essays under the moniker of “Science, Public Policy, Community”, but under the shared authorship of the Coweeta Listening Project Writing Collective.

Burke, B. J., M. Welch-Devine, S. Gustafson, N. Heynen, J. L. Rice, T.L. Gragson, S.Evans, D. R. Nelson. (forthcoming) “Can science writing collectives overcome barriers to more democratic communication and collaboration? Lessons from environmental communication praxis in southern Appalachia.” Environmental Communication

Abstract: Despite compelling reasons to involve nonscientists in the production of ecological
knowledge, cultural and institutional factors often dis-incentivize engagement between
scientists and nonscientists. This paper details our efforts to develop a biweekly
newspaper column to increase communication between ecological scientists, social
scientists, and the communities within which they work. Addressing community generated
topics and written by a collective of social and natural scientists, the column
is meant to foster public dialog about socio-environmental issues and to lay the
groundwork for the coproduction of environmental knowledge. Our collective approach
to writing addresses some major barriers to public engagement by scientists, but the
need to insert ourselves as intermediaries limits these gains. Overall, our efforts at
environmental communication praxis have not generated significant public debate, but
they have supported future coproduction by making scientists a more visible presence
in the community and providing easy pathways for them to begin engaging the public.
Finally, this research highlights an underappreciated barrier to public engagement:
scientists are not merely disconnected from the public, but also connected in ways that
may be functional for their research. Many field scientists, for example, seek out neutral
and narrowly defined connections that permit research access but are largely
incompatible with efforts to address controversial issues of environmental governance.

Keywords: science writing; democratization; public engagement; journalism;
coproduction

 

Acknowledging Trade-offs and Understanding Complexity: Exurbanization Issues in Macon County, North Carolina

February 26, 2014 Comments off

I have been working more and more with forms of collective writing, or in this case, large group writing, across a couple different groups. This recently published effort is the product of a seminar I co-taught with four other Profs and twelve PhD students from four across disciplines (Geography, Anthropology, Ecology, Forestry). This group represents the first cohort of the new(ish) Integrative Conservation PhD. Program we’ve been involved in building at the University of Georgia.

Vercoe, R. A., M. Welch-Devine, D. Hardy, J. A. Demoss, S. N. Bonney, K. Allen,
P. Brosius, D. Charles, B. Crawford, S. Heisel, N. Heynen, R. G. De
Jesús-Crespo, N. Nibbelink, L. Parker, C. Pringle, A. Shaw and L. Van Sant.
2014. Acknowledging Trade-offs and Understanding Complexity: Exurbanization
Issues in Macon County, North Carolina. Ecology and Society 19 (1): 23.
http://www.ecologyandsociety.org/vol19/iss1/art23/

Interestingly, the third ICON cohort has just been involved in publishing this collectively written column that is a part of the Coweeta Listening Project‘s bi-weekly column in the Franklin Press

Science, Public Policy, Community: LTLT and UGA students form partnership

For our other columns, check out the CLP’s website archive.

Peas and Praxis: Organizing Food Justice through the Direct Action of the Newtown Florist Club

August 27, 2013 Comments off

Several years ago Ellen Kohl (a Ph.D Student I work with) and I started to collaborate with an incredible group of community activists called the Newtown Florist Club who live and organize in Gainesville Georgia.  The Newtown Florist Club is a social and environmental justice organization who will be celebrating their 63rd Anniversary this year and are directed by a truly amazing woman named Ms. Faye Bush. Together, with a group of other academics, lawyers and a couple environmental engineers, we formed of a research/writing collective that we called the Newtown Florist Club Writing Collective (NFCWC).  We formed the NFCWC out of concern that too often scholars parachute into communities to “research them” and just as quickly disappear.  We have worked hard over the course of these years to build trust and get to know each other and hope to share our collective insights through a series of publications we are working on.

The first publication from this collective endeavor has just been published in an exciting book edited by Rachel Slocum and Arun Saldanha titled Geographies of Race and Food: Fields, Bodies, Markets.

Our chapter is titled:

“Peas and Praxis: Organizing Food Justice through the Direct Action of the Newtown Florist Club”.

Beyond this collective effort, Ellen is also working on her dissertation is close collaboration with the NFC.

Stay tuned for her great project in due course.

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