Dr. Daniel K. Gardner, D.W. Morrow Professor of History at Smith College, has been awarded a prestigious Andrew Carnegie Fellowship to support his research on ecological civilization in China. Dr. Gardner will receive up to $200,000 over the next two years. His research will focus on China’s environment in the past, current work on ecological civilization, and further plans for the movement into ecological civilization. Intrigued by the language and rhetoric of “ecological civilization,” Dr. Gardner hopes to discover how the transformation towards ecological civilization will impact Chinese society and whether it is enough to counter the current dismal state of China’s environment.
Dr. Gardner has tracked the environmental movement in China before, outlining both its popularity and political challenges. His work, posted below, tells the story of China’s awakening to the depth of the environmental crisis through the “airpocalypse” and discovery of “cancer villages,” rural villages often located downstream from industrial plants, amongst other major events. Dr. Gardner later traced the embrace of “Under the Dome,” a documentary on air pollution in China, by the Chinese people while political leadership tried to ban the video.
China, the most populated and polluted country in the world, has embraced the concepts and practices of ecological civilization to counteract environmental damage caused through industrialization. Dr. Gardner’s research will be a vital contribution to the ecological civilization conversation and action taking place globally. His research will contribute to communicating the move towards ecological civilization in China, outlining challenges and successes, and tracing the movement into the future.
Background on ecological civilization in China:
China: Ecological Civilization