Intergenerational care of ecologies through social learning

Fadzilah Majid Cooke, Joyce Sheau Roei Yee, Yoko Akama

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Social learning is often an expected process and outcome of designing social innovation, yet very little is known about how the learning endures over time. This chapter shares insights from a case study spanning 20 years that documents sustained participation by villagers addressing water pollution and riverine forest degradation in the Lower Kinabatangan wetlands area of Sabah, East Malaysia. The example focusing on water conservation activities highlights how social learning across generations has helped develop care for the local ecology, crucial in supporting ongoing sustainable efforts. Learnings about the health of the Lower Kinabatangan have been grounded by interweaving local ecological knowledge and mainstream science, allowing a reconnection to place and lived experience. Developing inter-generational care through social learning is contingent on there being relations of trust, promoting commitment, reflection, cooperation and enthusiasm to enable care to flourish. Being attentive to how this care across distance and generations is seeded, nurtured and sustained has immense potential in enhancing participatory and ecological futures.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEntanglements of Designing Social Innovation in the Asia-Pacific
EditorsYoko Akama, Joyce Yee
Place of PublicationNew York, USA
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9781003244684
ISBN (Print)9781032140643, 9781032155562
Publication statusPublished - 17 Nov 2023

Publication series

NameDesign Research for Change

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