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Open Access Social-ecological transformation and COVID-19: the need to revisit working-class environmentalism

This article is Open Access under the terms of the Creative Commons CC BY licence.

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic points to unequally distributed vulnerabilities in society. Unevenly distributed disadvantages are also found in processes of a social-ecological transformation. The concept of working-class environmentalism arguably presents a way out of this deficiency through incorporating and focusing on working class and precarious people in processes of social change. We develop four theses for our argumentation to revisit working-class environmentalism and conclude that this would build social resilience for coping with future crises of the whole of society.

Keywords: environmental justice; just transitions; socio-ethical conflicts; sustainability; transformative capacities

Document Type: Rapid Communication

Affiliations: Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF) e.V. | Land Use and Governance | Eberswalder Str. 84 | 15374 M√ľncheberg | Germany

Publication date: March 25, 2021

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  • GAIA is a peer-reviewed inter- and transdisciplinary journal for scientists and other interested parties concerned with the causes and analyses of environmental and sustainability problems and their solutions.

    Environmental problems cannot be solved by one academic discipline. The complex natures of these problems require cooperation across disciplinary boundaries. Since 1991, GAIA has offered a well-balanced and practice-oriented forum for transdisciplinary research. GAIA offers first-hand information on state of the art environmental research and on current solutions to environmental problems. Well-known editors, advisors, and authors work to ensure the high quality of the contributions found in GAIA and a unique transdisciplinary dialogue – in a comprehensible style.

    GAIA is an ISI-journal, listed in the Science Citation Index Expanded, Social Science Citation Index and in Current Contents/Social and Behavioral Sciences.

    All contributions undergo a double-blind peer review.

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