Presentation on theme: "O world of spring and autumn, birth and dying!"— Presentation transcript:
1 Friday Forum, School of Geography and Environmental Studies ‘Journey towards knowledge’ O world of spring and autumn, birth and dying!The endless cycle of ideas and action,Endless invention, endless experiment,Brings knowledge of motion, but not of stillness.Where is the life we have lost in living?Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?
2 Geography challenges Thinking about a discipline Peter Wilde 9 August 2013
3 Today we stand in footsteps millennia old. May we acknowledge the traditional ownerswhose cultures and customs have nurtured,and continue to nurture, this land,since men and women awoke from the great dream.We honour the presence of these ancestors who reside inthe imagination of this land and whose irrepressiblespirituality flows through all creation.Jonathon Hill
4 My journey towards an understanding of geography
5 Where my journey has led – so far SpaceRegionSense of placeTimeSocietal and physical processesPlaceScaleDifferential change over time indifferent placesDifferent outcomes of processes in different placesDifferent expressions of phenomena in different placesInteractions between placesHow the characteristics of place and space influence phenomena, processes and outcomes.Interaction among phenomena in a place
6 Classical regional geography The 1960sClassical regional geographyIntegrated teaching about human and physical features in space
7 Layered English landscapes: Midlands fields Transport in Birmingham Motorway1980Canal 1770
8 BrewingWest Midlands iron industry around 1850Iron works – note proximity to canals
12 More recent physical geography Ever more quantitative
13 Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA): A (basic) primer A simple view asEarth rotational feedbacksGravitational feedbacks-> Global feedbacksModelling critically requiresTime-steps of spatial distribution of ice massKnowledge of how Earth responds to loading: (3d) Earth structure (notably, lithospheric thickness, lower & upper mantle viscosity)Poorly understood
14 Spatial aspects of physical processes Gravity and rebound Before ice melt_____ After ice meltCourtesy of Matt King
15 Geography matters! (Courtesy of Matt King) Greenland mass loss equiv to 1mm/yr global sea level riseWest Antarctic mass loss equiv to 1mm/yr global sea level risePacific islands feel the brunt, regardlessNorthern Europe feels less than average due to Greenland melt!
16 More recent human geography Post-positive approachesEver more sub-disciplines
17 Peet’s view of the growth of sub-disciplines in human geography
18 Malpas quoting Jessop on the churning Contemporary discourse in relation to space,both within geography and more generally, has been characterized by ``an unreflexive `churning' of spatial turns, leading to short intellectual product cycles for key socio-spatial concepts, limiting opportunities for learning through theoretical debate, empirical analysis, and critical evaluation of such concepts''(Jessop et al, 2008, p , quoted in Malpas 2012 p 229).
24 Why keep this discipline? Geography is confused at the centre and open at the boundariesGeography opens a world to other disciplinesGeography is atomised among sub-disciplinesSpecialisation is more productive than integrationOther disciplines study place and space
25 I know we’re in there somewhere! Centre for Environment Provide solutions for real-world environmental problems.Be guided by end-users in setting priorities.Support interdisciplinary research, including science, humanities, government and lawAustralian Environmental History (HTA271)Explores the interaction between human beings and the natural environment in Australian history.The unit first examines the Aboriginal relationship to the flora and fauna of the continent and then reviews the impact of European settlement on the land and native animals until the 1970s.It assesses the effects of agriculture, pastoralism, mining, forestry and introduced animals, and of pollution arising from urbanisation and industry.It traces the rise of an environmental consciousness with the establishment of national parks and nature reserves, the development of ideas about wilderness, conservation, and preservation, and the emergence of the green movement.
27 The new national school curriculum Geography builds a broad and holistic understanding of the world by integrating knowledge from the natural sciences, social sciences and humanities.Geography develops students’ curiosity and wonder about the world.Geography explores the places that make up our world, and investigates the effects of location and distance on the characteristics of places, the interconnections between places, and the management of place and space.Geographical skills include fieldwork in human and physical studies, and interpreting and mapping spatial distributionsField and computer-based technologies are fundamental to geographical study.This knowledge and skills can be applied in everyday life and to a variety of careers.
31 Saying goodbye! We shall not cease from exploration And at the end of all our exploringWill be to arrive where we startedAnd know the place for the first time…the source of the longest riverThe voice of the hidden waterfallAnd the children in the apple treeNot known because not looked for…T.S.Eliot ‘Little Gidding’