Fellow-led initiative seeks to quantify the benefits of environmental education
More than ever, we are living in a data-driven world, where stories are enlightening but data drives the bottom line. Funders, policy makers, regulators, resource managers, and other decision makers rely on data to guide strategy.
This Network Innovation planning grant enabled Fellows Nicole Ardoin and Christy Merrick to develop a collaboration on a major new initiative to coalesce and analyze the existing research base on environmental education and its effects on student achievement and environmental outcomes. Drawing on this research base, the initiative is focusing on communicating findings to a variety of audiences. We are linking rigorous research reviews with a robust communications strategy, with the primary intention of informing not only the research community, but also decision makers in policy, conservation, education, and other circles.
Our Network Innovation grant allowed us to bring together key project partners for an in-person strategy meeting in Washington, DC. We were able to hone our focus on the outcomes of early childhood environmental education, describe roles of the project partners which included people from the academic, government agency, and NGO communities, and develop a project plan for both conducting the research review and communicating the results. Ongoing results and materials developed in the course of our work will be posted on the eePRO section of the North American Association of Environmental Education website.
We continue to welcome input and ideas from the Switzer Network related to conducting systematic scientific research reviews, the kinds of communications tools that will be most effective for making the case, and opportunities for collaboration and funding.