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Presentation at the EDEN Post-doc, Early Career Symposium, July 3rd 2015. University of Edinburgh, School of GeoScience https://edineconet.wordpress.com/2015/06/18/eden-post-doc-early-career-symposium-july-3rd-2015/
Design is a practice strategically placed to be pivotal in the transformation of unsustainable ways of living. John Berger famously said “Seeing comes before words”. Seeing is also a way new ideas emerge and thus design can facilitate change on various scales. Designing new communication tools reminds us that the ways that we think are constructed. Environmental problems can be understood as a result of dysfunctional ways of perceiving, understanding and relating to the natural world. Reductive, instrumental and fragmenting ways of knowing are responsible for the transformation of the life sustaining ecological and social context into isolated elements to be managed with reductive methods. The notion that carving up the natural commons into individual ecosystem services will enable the conservation of natural capital is based on these erroneous epistemological assumptions. Nature cannot be effectively divided and submitted to the logic of the economic system because the ecological and the social orders are the context of the economic order.
Based on a paper published in Environmental Communication. The Green Economy: Reconceptualizing the Natural Commons as Natural Capital. 13 Mar 2015. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17524032.2015.1018296#abstract.
The paper can be downloaded for free here: https://ecolabsblog.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/green-economy-envcomms2015-boehnert.pdf