Teaching / Seminar at University of St. Gallen
by Jovana Dikovic
Moralizing the Environment
The seminar investigates when and how the environment became a moral subject. Through contrasting ethical positions of conventional farmers, environmentalists, policy developers and consumers, the grounds on which these actors build their attitudes, beliefs and relationships toward the environment are analyzed. The goal of the seminar is to understand better why environmental interventionism and regulations, contrary to expected outcomes, too often cause too many contrasting effects; and what it takes for different actors to get along toward a more harmonized understanding of the environment.
How to Understand Greenwashing?
Greenwashing emerged as a result of pressure on corporations to act environmentally and produce more sustainably. As a by-product of the sustainability discourse, greenwashing has become an indicator of dubious representations of ecological and environmental corporate change. In this seminar, it is analyzed what is beneath the surface that motivates the perpetuation of greenwashing. Whether virtue-signaling engraved in sustainability narratives and high environmental expectations – including the pressure to have problems solved without realizing their main cause – in fact motivate vice instead of virtue in the case of greenwashing?
Ethics of Soil, Farming, and Consumption
Juxtaposing micro and macro ethical perceptions related to soil, production, and consumption facilitates a better understanding of each individual role in the supply and demand chain, from local producers, global attaining food security, to food distribution. The seminar questions what is the ethics of the soil? What are the ethics of production and producers? What are the ethics of consumers? The answers reveal how the organization of lives and production in rural areas merge into and deviate from the logic of larger national and international systems of production and trade, waste management, and consumption – which is crucial in delivering sensible and applicable policies.