Education in Landcare groups: social learning aspects of adaptive management

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Social learning in promoting natural resource management (NRM) can be characterised by collections of practices. Education for sustainability practices have unique structures, which can be analysed to provide insights into the social aspects of learning. Drawing on Schatzki's theory of social practices consisting of collections of sayings and doings, I examine the social learning practices found in Landcare. This paper describes the experiences in conducting case studies in several Landcare groups in the Murray-Darling Basin, Australia. The research is contributing to the understanding of the social learning practices in community-based groups of environmental volunteers, using Landcare roups as an example. Discourse analysis is used to explore data created from semi-structured interviews with landholders, participant observation of Landcare groups, and historical document analysis from the Landcare groups. The results highlight characteristics of informal adult education in natural resource management ' and demonstrate potential contributions to capacity building in environmental groups, practice, theory and to inform policy. Three key issues are: (1) important informal education processes occurring in Landcare; (2) implementing new practices in education for sustainability (EfS) at the grass-roots level; (3) encouraging policy developments to promote NRM learning
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)139-143
Number of pages5
JournalExtension Farming Systems Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2010


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