It seems extraordinary that only in 2013 when we published our book ‘Trade Unions and the Green Economy’ (Nora Räthzel and David Uzzell, Routledge, 2013), we could write –
“The fact that labour studies and environmental studies are separate spheres of research serves to reinforce the failure of researchers to appreciate the importance of their reciprocal significance and contribution. This shortcoming has been carried through to the lecture theatre. It is extremely rare for academic courses on the environment and climate change to discuss issues of labour. Likewise, there are few courses on labour that explore the implications of climate change for working conditions and labour rights.”
Since then there has been a significant growth in research as well as courses on Environmental Labour Studies. As a result of this growing interest, we - Nora Räthzel, Dimitris Stevis and David Uzzell - are planning a Handbook on Environmental Labour Studies. This will explore the way in which nature and labour are intrinsically linked and equally threatened by globalising Capital as well as the role of trade unions and workers’ movements worldwide in addressing environmental degradation and climate change. We want it to be a valuable resource for students and teachers in this area
We know from talking to colleagues that this subject is now becoming an important topic on many courses throughout the world in geography, political ecology, politics, sociology, environmental studies and labour studies, and others. We are trying to collect a list of this courses in order to demonstrate to the publisher that such a book is useful and necessary. Do you know of any courses which include the teaching of some aspects of environmental labour studies? If you can write and give us any information (if possible, a link to the syllabus), we would be very grateful.
Should you be interested in writing a chapter in such a handbook please inform us and let us know what your particular interest and contribution would be.
Dimitris for all three of us.
dimitris [dot] stevis [at] colostate [dot] edu