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Social and cultural perspectives on eco-health

Albrecht, G., Higginbotham, N., Connor, L. and Freeman, S. (2008) Social and cultural perspectives on eco-health. In: Quah, S., (ed.) International Encyclopedia of Public Health. Academic Press, pp. 57-63.

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Public health problems cannot be explained without recourse to social science and humanities' understandings of how the interconnections between humans and the environment flourish or fail. After presenting an overview of historical precedents, this article describes ecosystem health in terms of biophysical, healthy ecosystem, conservation medicine, eco-health, human ecology and ecological anthropology, health psychology, and conservation psychology approaches. Key concepts and methods of the ecosystem approach including complex systems, critical realism, ‘transdisciplinarity,’ and participatory methods are discussed. While by no means fully united, ecosystem health represents an emergent sustainability paradigm that can integrate many aspects of public health research and practice in the twenty-first century.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Publisher: Academic Press
Copyright: © 2008 Elsevier Inc.
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