Ecology, Attention, Action Discussion Group

hands on tree trunk istock

Environmental collapse permeates our lives, creating anxiety, depression, helplessness, anger, and panic. One known path towards healing and towards collective action is to come into a more tangible relationship with our environments. This begins with what we call ecological attention: A deepened focus on and awareness of relationships among organisms and environments. When we leave our labs, screens, and classrooms to move out into the world, we ground our sense of ecological health/unhealth in the experiential as well as the theoretical. We reawaken awareness of ecological beauty, strangeness, and complexity, including the sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste of the environments that house and sustain us. This deepened awareness leads to a desire for care. A desire for care leads to a desire to act. Ecology, Attention, Action. 


With support from the College of Arts and Sciences Expanding Horizons Initiative, we're hosting a monthly discussion group centered on this concept. Lunch provided.


Open to all (students, faculty, staff, community members).


Second Friday of the month in Fall 2024 and Spring 2025, 12:45-2 (Community Hour).

9/13, 10/11, 11/8, 12/13, 1/10, 2/14, 3/14, 4/11, 5/9



More information

Each meeting centers on a shared meal. Food systems play a significant role in the climate crisis. Drawing attention to the source and preparation of food underscores how food is also a source of resistance and healing. Larger goals of the meeting:

  1. Share foundational approaches/literatures/data in our fields
  2. Develop courses centered on taking students places for experiential ecological scholarship
  3. Plan empirical studies as we develop concrete research questions. 
  4. Plan/execute a Study Day (bring experts to campus to advise us on how their work informs our project)
  5. Develop and strengthen community partnerships. Creating reciprocal campus-community exchanges takes time and requires the building of trust and authentic relationships.