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Conservation Psychology: Understanding and Promoting Human Care for Nature

Textbook

By: Susan Clayton (Author), Gene Myers (Author)

325 pages, b/w photos, b/w illustrations

Wiley-Blackwell

Paperback | Sep 2015 | Edition: 2 | #219635 | ISBN-13: 9781118874608
Availability: Usually dispatched within 48 hours
NHBS Price: £39.95 $50/€47 approx

About this book

People are inseparable from natural ecosystems, and understanding how people think about, experience, and interact with nature is crucial for promoting environmental sustainability as well as human well-being.

This is the new edition of what is now the leading textbook in conservation psychology, the field that explores connections between the study of human behavior and the achievement of conservation goals. Completely updated, Conservation Psychology summarizes theory and research on ways in which humans experience nature; it explores people's conceptions of nature and environmental problems, their relationship with nature, and their moral lenses on nature; and examines ways to encourage conservation-oriented behavior at both individual and societal levels. Throughout, the authors integrate a wide body of research demonstrating the role of psychology in promoting a more sustainable relationship between humans and nature.

New sections cover human perceptions of environmental problems, new examples of community-based conservation, and a "positive psychology" perspective that emphasizes the relevance of nature to human resilience. Additional references are to be found throughout this edition along with some new examples and a reorganisation of chapters in response to reader feedback.

This fascinating volume is used for teaching classes to senior undergraduate and graduate students of Conservation Psychology, Environmental Psychology and Conservation Science in departments of Psychology, Geography, Environmental Science, and Ecology and Evolution. It is equally suitable as a starting point for other researchers and practitioners – psychologists, conservation biologists, environmental scientists, and policy-makers – needing to know more about how psychological research can inform their conservation work.

This edition replaces the 1st edition.


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Contents

x

Preface to the Second Edition xi
About the Companion Website xiii

1 Introducing the Field of Conservation Psychology 1

PART I HUMAN EXPERIENCES OF NATURE
2 Domestic Nature: Cohabiting with Animals and Plants 17
3 Managed Nature: Zoos, Aquariums, and Public Parks 41
4 Wild Nature: Encounters with Wilderness 60
Defining wild nature and wilderness 60

PART II THINKING ABOUT NATURE
5 Attitudes, Values, and Perceptions 93
6 Perceptions of Environmental Problems 114
7 Moral Psychology and the Environment 130
8 Environment and Identity 163

PART III ENCOURAGING A SUSTAINABLE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN HUMANS AND NATURE
9 Promoting Sustainable Behavior 191
10 Community Psychology and International Biodiversity Conservation 212
11 Environmental Education 241
12 The Positive Psychology of Conservation 268

Glossary 305
Index 311


Detailed table of contents:

Preface to the Second Edition xi
About the Companion Website xiii

1 Introducing the Field of Conservation Psychology 1
Conservation 2
Psychology 3
Human care for nature 5
The roots of conservation psychology 7
The utility of conservation psychology 8
The practice of conservation psychology 10
The organization of the book 11
Conclusion 12
For further information, visit these websites 13
References 13

PART I HUMAN EXPERIENCES OF NATURE

2 Domestic Nature: Cohabiting with Animals and Plants 17
Animals in the home 17
History and variations in pet-keeping 18
Relationships with pets 19
Health and well-being effects of domestic animals 23
Social effects of companion animals 25
Robotic animals 27
Connections with nature 28
Plants in the domestic sphere 29
Effects of indoor plants 29
Window views of nature 31
Plant-facilitated therapy 31
Experience and effects of gardening 32
Conclusion 34
References 35

3 Managed Nature: Zoos, Aquariums, and Public Parks 41
Zoos and aquariums 42
Reasons for visiting 43
Visitors’ experience of the zoo 45
Impact on environmental knowledge and concern 46
Maximizing the experience 48
Urban parks and green spaces 50
Parks and human well-being 52
Children and green space 53
Conclusion 55
References 55

4 Wild Nature: Encounters with Wilderness 60
Defining wild nature and wilderness 60
Wilderness use and wilderness values 62
Wilderness solitude 64
Natural forces and features 66
Wildfire 67
Natural disasters 67
Wild animals: attitudes and experience 69
The edge of control: wilderness remoteness and challenge 73
Activity in wild nature, connection, and caring 76
Wild nature and spiritual experience 78
Wilderness-based growth and therapeutic programs 81
Conclusion 82
References 83

PART II THINKING ABOUT NATURE

5 Attitudes, Values, and Perceptions 93
Core understandings of nature 93
Values 94
Attitudes 98
Perceptions 101
Evolutionary perspectives 104
Conclusion 109
References 109

6 Perceptions of Environmental Problems 114
Risk perception 114
Biases in information processing 118
Language and discourse 120
Understanding environmental problems 121
Attributions of responsibility 124
Linking perceptions to behavior 125
Conclusion 126
References 127

7 Moral Psychology and the Environment 130
Background on ethical concepts 130
Social intuitionism and moral foundations theory 131
A virtue ethics of the environment 134
The deontic tradition and psychological research 141
Contextual differences in moral duties 145
Consequentialism, emotion, and socialization 147
Psychological dynamics of moral functioning 151
Pragmatist ethics 154
Conclusion 156
References 156

8 Environment and Identity 163
The concept of identity 163
Identity development 164
Developing an affiliation with nature 166
Environmental identity 167
Ecopsychology and depth psychology perspectives 169
Measuring environmental identity 170
Place identity 171
Animals and identity 174
Environmental social identity 175
Identity and behavior 177
Putting identity to work 179
Conclusion 181
References 182

PART III ENCOURAGING A SUSTAINABLE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN HUMANS AND NATURE

9 Promoting Sustainable Behavior 191
Identifying target behaviors 191
Influences on behavior 193
External factors 193
Internal factors 198
Models for changing behavior 204
Collective behavior 206
Conclusion 208
References 208

10 Community Psychology and International Biodiversity Conservation 212
International biodiversity conservation 213
Common pool resources and models of governance 214
New conceptions of the commons 216
Social capital and its limitations 220
Psychology, culture, and local knowledge 222
Creating ecological knowledge old and new: Traditional and modern citizen science 225
Accounting for the costs and benefits of conservation 228
Psychological costs of displacing populations for conservation 230
Conservation and all-too-human psychology 232
Psychological biases and emotion 232
Illegal trade in threatened and endangered species 233
Conservation, environmental threats, and conflict 235
Conclusion 236
References 237

11 Environmental Education 241
Environmental education 242
The need for environmental education 244
Examples of contemporary environmental education 246
Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) 246
Classroom-based environmental education 247
Place-based education 248
Programs focused on biodiversity 250
Psychological foundations of environmental education 251
Cognitive development, ecology, and environmental knowledge 252
Affective factors and EE 253
Socialization 256
Action, participation, and problem solving 257
Lessons for effective practice 260
Conclusion 261
References 261

12 The Positive Psychology of Conservation 268
Nature as a positive environment 269
Negative emotions in response to environmental challenges 273
Positive emotions in relation to environmental behaviors 275
Eudaimonism and meaning 277
Materialistic values versus self-determination theory 279
Optimism and pessimism 283
Self-regulation and expectancies of outcomes 283
Explanatory style 284
Cognitive strategies 285
Optimistic and pessimistic biases in environmental issues 286
Toward strengths-based approaches 286
Human virtue and character strengths 288
Other-praising emotions and positive moral psychology 289
Engagement and creativity 291
Mindfulness 293
Collective flourishing 294
References 296

Glossary 305
Index 311


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Biography

Susan Clayton is Whitmore-Williams Professor of Psychology and Chair of Environmental Studies at the College of Wooster in Ohio, USA. She has served as president of the Society for Environmental, Population, and Conservation Psychology and is president-elect of the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. Her research focuses on understanding and promoting concern about environmental issues.  In particular, Clayton is interested in the ways in which a relationship with nature is promoted through social interactions, and has studied these interactions in zoo settings around the world.

Gene Myers is a Professor at Huxley College of the Environment at Western Washington University, where he offers courses in conservation psychology, environmental history and ethics, and teaches and advises in undergraduate and graduate programs in environmental education. He is a past president of the Society for Human Ecology. His research interests include the psychological foundations of children’s relation to animals; the ontogenetic development of environmental care and responsibility; the integration of positive psychology into conservation and sustainability practice; and the teaching of environmental ethics and the preparation of future environmental educators.

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