WORKSHOP – Interdisciplinary Aspects of Public Health & Environmental Justice

Center for Environmental Philosophy
University of North Texas—Department of Philosophy and Religion Studies
University of Texas at El Paso—The Center for Science, Technology, Ethics, and Policy
Bethune-Cookman University—B. J. Moore Center for Integrated Environmental Science
and the Interdisciplinary Environmental Association


The Interdisciplinary Aspects of
Public Health & Environmental Justice

– A Workshop Series –

Environmental justice (EJ) encompasses several issues ranging from housing regulations to the distribution of natural resources, many of which have been addressed by researchers in environmental health science and other disciplines.  Yet, there has not been a significant interdisciplinary or philosophical discussion zeroing in on the public health dimension of complex environmental problems such as climate change as they relate to environmental justice.  These workshops bring together scholars, researchers, and public officials aiming to find common ground for conversation with these closely related themes.  Those involved will examine the public-health aspects of environmental justice and set the tone for future conversations on the subject.  The scope is sharp yet the range is extensive.  Some areas of focus include climate change, desertification, global poverty, sea-level rise, resource management, and globalization.  A few of the questions we will ask include: what are the new challenges for public health and EJ concerning topics such as climate change, desertification, and sea-level rise?  What are the most effective and ethical avenues for dealing with these new challenges?  Is EJ considered a social priority for estimations of public health?  How can we amend scientific and public policy to handle the problems associated with climate change?  How does one ease the tensions between public priorities and ecosystem functionality?

The first session was on April 28, 2012 at the University of Texas at El Paso.  The University of North Texas hosts the second workshop in Denton, TX on September 15 of 2012.  The final workshop takes place during December of 2012 at Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, FL.  Those wishing to participate in the Denton workshop should send inquires and abstracts of 100 – 150 words, prepared for blind review, to Shane Epting at by August 1, 2012.

CALL FOR CONTRIBUTORS – Routledge Handbook Environment & Society In Asia

We have been asked by Routledge to serve as editors of the Routledge Handbook Environment & Society In Asia. The book is intended to be a key resource for readers interested in the social, cultural and policy aspects of the environment in Asia, especially East Asia (East, Northeast and Southeast Asia). Each chapter in the book will address a single topic across the region.
We are now making the final touches to the book’s planned contents.  We still have a few topics to cover.  If you or someone you know might be interested in writing on one of the following topics, please get in touch with us very soon:

  • Human health and the environment (ideally discussing environment-human relationships impacting health)
  • Garbage and waste pollution/management (ideally including controversies around solutions, such as incineration, recycling, taxes and “confronting consumption”)
  • Corporations (ideally addressing the responsibilities and responses of businesses/industry in the region)
  • Regional causes of climate change (ideally address the socio-economic changes in the region making it a major source of greenhouse gas pollution, and possibly discussing associated questions of responsibility and justice)
  • Environmental ethics/philosophy (ideally looking at Asian/East Asian approaches, possibly contrasting them with Western approaches, and how this relates to causes of environmental problems in the region and responses to them)

We welcome proposals for chapters on other topics if they have regional coverage (that is, we discourage proposals focusing on single country cases).

Each chapter should provide a comprehensive review of the issues, focusing on how society and policymaking combine in efforts within and among countries of the region to respond to environmental and resource challenges. We anticipate that chapters will be 7,000-8,000 words in length (including references), with a planned deadline of late October 2012.

PAUL G. HARRIS, Hong Kong Institute of Education

GRAEME LANG, City University of Hong Kong