Wonder as the gateway to eco-reciprocity: A conversation with Haydn Washington, Ph.D. | Benjamin Freud, Ph.D.

In this episode, I speak to Haydn Washington, environmental scientist and writer at the Institute of Environmental Studies at UNSW. His interests are sustainability (as a step toward regeneration), solutions to the environmental crisis, human dependence on nature, and humanity’s denial of its problems. He is also keenly interested in wilderness and the ‘sense of wonder’ humanity feels towards nature. We discuss:

  • Thinking in terms of eco-reciprocity rather than sustainability,
  • Overcoming Nature Deficit Disorder through wonder and experience,
  • The politics of healing through small, meaningful steps.

This is the latest episode of a series that brings the voice of those outside K-12, opening up to the larger ecosystem where thinking, learning and action can contribute to the welfare of the bio-collective.

Listen to more Coconut Thinking podcasts on Intrepid Ed News.

Benjamin Freud, Ph.D.

Benjamin Freud, Ph.D. is the co-founder of Coconut Thinking, which creates learning and action experiences where all learners have a common purpose; positive impact on the welfare of the bio-collective — any living thing, sentient or plant, that has an interest in the healthfulness of the planet. Benjamin also works as the Whole School Leader of Learning and Teaching at an International School in Thailand. He was the Academic Coordinator at Misk Schools, which, as the school of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, is the most prestigious and high profile school in the kingdom. In 2018-2019, he was also the Head of Upper Primary and Middle School at Misk. Prior to this, he was Vice Principal of the Middle School and High School at the Harbour School in Hong Kong. He holds a Ph.D. in History, an MSc in Education, an MBA, an MA in International Relations, and a BA in International Affairs. Benjamin was born and grew up in Paris, France. He moved to the U.S. when he was 15 and spent 11 years there in different cities, before living in the U.K., Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia, and now Thailand. He started his career in consulting for Internet start-ups in Silicon Valley in the late 1990s, working with people whose ambitions were no less than to change the world. This experience had a profound effect on Benjamin’s outlook on education, innovation, and entrepreneurialism.

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