We all hate conflict, right? I do too. But environmental conflict is a reality in our times. How do we respond? Most of us simply stick close to those with whom we agree, and stay away from those with whom we disagree. This is totally understandable—and most likely will not help us at all.
A few months ago, I and colleagues across the country published a paper (Proctor et al. 2018) calling for greater engagement across difference and among those who disagree. (Here’s an earlier post attempting to define environmental engagement.) It’s hard work, and yet may be the most important work we can do.
I’m now realizing that my work in environmental theory, and recent EcoTypes survey findings, offer both conceptual and empirical justification for engagement. It’s based on what we could think of as deep disagreement: go here to see the full mindmap in the image above and explore links. That famous quote attributed to Nobel Prize-winning physicist Niels Bohr has been one of my favorites for a long time; it seems that the closer you get to the truth, the closer you get to two opposing truths!—a paradox.
I’m working on my EcoTypes survey analysis, some practical examples, and other resources, and will share them on a new EcoTypes site, to be published next week along with a related workshop and session at the 2018 AESS conference. Stay tuned…more soon.