People and Nature are excited to be hosting a Thematic Session at the BES Annual Meeting, with speakers strongly connected to the journal.

Editor-in-Chief Kevin Gaston will be talking about the journal and how research can be stimulated by the discussions it will provoke, as well as Senior Editors Kai Chan, Robert Fish and Rosie Hails. Aletta Bonn and Laura Graham from our Associate Editor team will also be speaking, as well as author Steve Redpath.

Thematic Sessions aim to create a high profile forum for the discussion of timely, innovative and/or important questions, provide local ‘flavour’ within the programme, and showcase integration with disciplines outside of ecology (including other natural sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities).

Relational Thinking – The People and Nature blog, will be posing a few questions to the speakers ahead of the meeting.

See the first edition in this series below:

Kai Chan


1. What is your talk about?

My talk is titled, “Bringing in the Unusual Suspects: Relational Values in Programs for Sustainability”. It’s about growing the sustainability movement by tapping in to a new concept of what connects people to nature. Intrinsic and instrumental values aren’t the only values in town; there are also relational valuespreferences, principles and virtues about relationships involving people and nature. These relational values can be very powerful, and they are shared well beyond the committed core of self-identified environmentalists. Programs and policies can tap into that power, or they can unintentionally run afoul of it, and I’ll provide examples of both.


2. Why will people want to come to your talk?

People will want to come to learn more about this emerging concept, which promises to be so important to conservation and sustainability, and how it can help transform our practice and policy.


3. How is the talk relevant to People and Nature?

People and Nature is a journal of relational thinking, so relational values fit perfectly with the journal. It’s a deeply interdisciplinary concept, involving a wide range of social fields and disciplines, with a continued engagement also with ecology.


The Thematic Session will be on the Wednesday 19th December between 1-3pm.


Follow Kai Chan on Twitter @KaiChanUBC and read his blog CHANS Lab Views.

Follow the conference conversation on Twitter with #BES2018