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Environmental Education · Equity · Sustainability · Community · Systemic Change · Civic Engagement

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Alex Kudryavtsev
Research Associate
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I am an environmental education researcher at the Civic Ecology Lab, Cornell University. My qualitative and quantitative research focuses on environmental education and urban agriculture education in both formal and nonformal settings in cities and frontline communities. I explore outcomes such as civic engagement, environmental behavior, and sense of place. In addition, I investigate how environmental and climate change education in schools can drive systemic societal changes, promote equity, and improve educational systems.

In addition to conducting research, I teach Cornell University's for-credit courses (NTRES2470 "Green Cities," NTRES 2480 "Sustainability Leadership," and an upcoming course "Environmental Education"), and a number of global online courses for the professional development of environmental educators. I am an Advisor for the Global Environmental Education Partnership (supported by NAAEE), a Faculty Fellow at the Cornell Atkinson Center for Sustainability, and the first editor of Urban Environmental Education Review. In my free time, I enjoy reading, writing, hiking, learning from environmental educators, and collaborating with colleagues worldwide.

In 2024, was honored to facilitate a Cornell University's online panel, supported by the US EPA, NAAEE, and the ee360+ project.

Our expert panel explored how environmental education can foster civic engagement, catalyzing community and ecosystem well-being, environmental justice, and equitable governance. We ask these questions: What is civic engagement? How are environmental education, civic engagement, and environmental governance related? How can environmental education foster civic engagement and democracy? How can individuals and communities be involved?

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Plastic pollution is a significant environmental injustice, characterized by unequal distribution of its detrimental impacts and benefits. Despite the pervasive presence of plastic pollution worldwide, production continues unabated. Our online course, "Plastics: Impacts and Action," delves into the societal and environmental dynamics of plastic use, promoting actionable steps to mitigate plastic pollution. This course is available in early 2024.

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E-STEM provides us with the tools to protect the environment while driving scientific advancements to meet global challenges. Teachers, educators, volunteers, and leaders in our field are welcome to take the "E-STEM Education" online course. Earn a Cornell University certificate. We expect to offer this. course again in 2025.

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Communities are a crucial part of environmental education, including in schools. Cornell and NAAEE invited several experts from the US and other countries to discuss how to strengthen community engagement in school-based environmental education. Panel materials (essays, slides, recordings) are available here.

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In 2023, I taught our popular course "Environmental Education and Community Engagement."More than 800 environmental teachers and educators from 50 countries took this course. If you are interested to watch some webinars from this course, click here:

I am privileged to engage with leading experts in environmental education. Explore my blog for insightful interviews, including discussions with Blanca Hérnandez from YES Nature to Neighborhoods, California, and Alan Reid of Monash University, Australia.

My collaborators include:

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