n South African Journal of Higher Education - Education for sustainable living : a useful concept?

Volume 16, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



In recent years education for sustainability (EFS) initiatives have significantly influenced debates and activities related to environmental education. Sustainability has come to be viewed from / in various theoretical perspectives such as liberalist, critical and postmodern. The concept is a contested one, open to debate and speculation. In this article I critically discuss some emerging discourses on environmental education and how sustainability has been taken up within different discourses. I argue that the contested nature of the concept, however, does not mean that it cannot be usefully taken up within environmental education processes. I specifically focus on how the concept has been adopted by students in a preservice science education programme at the University of Stellenbosch.

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