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Episodes 2021; 44(2): 185-188

Published online June 1, 2021


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

Social responsibility in geoscience education workshops

Mike Katz

Mineral Consultant, Sydney Australia

Correspondence to:*E-mail: mikekatz320@gmail.com

Received: February 20, 2020; Revised: April 23, 2020; Accepted: April 23, 2020

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper considers the need to introduce social responsibility course content into the undergraduate university geosciences study curriculum as a result of outcomes of workshops and presentations. The aim of this new initiative is to make the students aware that their studies are not only a technical pathway to professional qualifications but also a requisite in their education to strengthen their social skills. As most of these students will be employed by the extractive industries including the environment sector they should be mindful that there are now major social impact issues developing worldwide. These include the requirement of a social license to operate, together with corporate social responsibility standards and in the case of Indigenous People the need for free, prior and informed consent. The workshops, which were attended by staff, students and other stakeholders interested in this topic all agreed in principle that it is important and should be further developed. However in the present situation, it is often relegated to a minor subject and more likely, it is not introduced at all. It is apparent that this social responsibility topic is an important component of the recent development of the geoethics initiative.