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Environmental Education
& Civic Engagement

Deep-dive expert panel
May 1, 2024
10:00am–11:30am Eastern Time

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Join our expert panel to explore how environmental education can foster civic engagement, catalyzing community and ecosystem well-being, environmental justice, and equitable governance.
  • What is civic engagement?
  • Why is it vital for equitable environmental governance?
  • Why should environmental education prioritize civic engagement?
  • How can environmental education foster civic engagement and democracy?
  • How can this lead to systemic and institutional change?
  • How can individuals and communities be involved?

Civic engagement is vital to achieving equitable environmental governance. It fosters democratic participation, ensuring healthier ecosystems, and amplifies diverse voices in shaping environmental policies and decisions. Without strong civic engagement, environmental solutions may become unsustainable, unjust, and lack innovation.

The North American Association for Environmental Education has developed Guidelines for Excellence in community engagement to ensure effective and inclusive environmental education practices. These guidelines are designed to foster meaningful involvement of communities in environmental decision-making, emphasizing the importance of building partnerships, enhancing community well-being, and promoting sustainable outcomes. In these guidelines, civic engagement is positioned as a cornerstone for empowering communities to actively participate in and shape environmental education and decision-making processes.

Our upcoming deep-dive panel will expand on the idea of environmental education fostering civic engagement. Panelists will explore innovative democratic strategies for involving students and adults in participatory decision-making within educational programs, discussing methods for weaving civic engagement principles in nonformal environmental programs and school curricula. Through this panel, participants will discover the transformative potential of environmental education in nurturing informed, active, and empowered citizens capable of driving sustainable change.


This panel is designed for environmental educators, teachers, community leaders, environmental decision-makers, government officials, university students, volunteers, and sustainability leaders.

Contribute Your Questions

In the registration form, you can contribute your own questions that panelists will view and may respond to. For example, we would like to explore:

  • What are different forms of civic engagement?

  • Why is civic engagement important for equitable and effective environmental decision-making.

  • How can environmental education programs contribute to institutional and policy changes?

  • How can young and underrepresented voices be empowered and heard?

  • How can civic engagement contribute to solving the problems of climate change, environmental pollution, and biodiversity depletion?

  • What are the barriers to integrating civic engagement in formal and nonformal environmental education programs?

  • What can we learn from examples of successful civic engagement in environmental education?​


During this panel, we will share numerous relevant resources to support environmental educators: research publications, reports, and websites that can enhance your work in civic engagement. In addition, panelists will write short essays summarizing their viewpoint on civic engagement, which will later be posted on the NAAEE website.


The deep-dive webinar is funded by the Office of Environmental Education at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency through ee360+, the environmental educator training program led by the North American Association for Environmental Education under Assistance Agreement No. NT 84019001. This expert panel has not been formally reviewed by EPA. The views expressed in this expert panel are solely those of the panelists and facilitators. EPA does not endorse any products or commercial services mentioned in this panel.

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