Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment and Society

Henry Finn

Department / group: School of Social & Political Sciences
Institution URL: N/A
Personal URL: N/A
Google Scholar URL: N/A

Research interests:

• Transformative Sustainability Education
• Education for Sustainable Development

Career history:

Henry spent his early career in the natural sciences. He holds a BSc in Biology from the University of Sheffield and during his time as an undergraduate student, he worked as a research biologist at the SoilBioHedge Soil Security Programme, where he studied the symbioses between mycorrhizal fungi and arable crops.
After completing his undergraduate studies in 2013, Henry obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Education and spent three years working as a science teacher at a secondary school in Tottenham, London. While teaching, Henry’s involvement with his school’s sustainability club inspired him to pursue further study.
In 2017, Henry moved to Vancouver in Canada and completed a master’s degree in Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University. His master’s studies covered a broad range of topics including Ecological Economics, Sustainable Community Planning, and Environmental Communication. In his master’s thesis research, Henry obtained and analysed the responses of 3,198 participants from an interactive online survey to evaluate how avalanche safety information is used and understood by winter backcountry recreationists in North America. Following completion of his master’s degree, Henry worked as an environmental consultant in Vancouver and developed a curriculum for adult environmental professionals about a decision-making framework called Adaptive Management.
In 2021, Henry returned to the UK to pursue his PhD and he is now located in Edinburgh.

Active research projects:

Going beyond transmission: Promoting the transformative potential of Education for Sustainable Development (PhD)

In his PhD research, Henry hopes to explore the impacts of university-level ESD courses on students, and to determine how such courses might be designed to enable transformative learning. Anticipated research questions are:
– What are the patterns of change of knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and sustainability-related skills and behaviours in students undertaking ESD courses and how can they be explained by demographic parameters, course design and activities, and extra-curricular factors?
– In what ways do personal narratives of students and teachers involved in ESD courses illustrate transformative learning?
– How can we design ESD courses to offer transformative opportunities?

Recent publications:

Clair, A.S., Finn, H. and Haegeli, P., 2021. Where the rubber of the RISP model meets the road: Contextualizing risk information seeking and processing with an avalanche bulletin user typology. International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, 66, p.102626.

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