Human Service Organization-Environment Relationships in Relation to Environmental Justice: Old and New Approaches to Macro Practice and Research

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Human Service Organizations: Management, Leadership & Governance

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The topic of organization-environment relations informs how organizational managers, community leaders, and policymakers and advocates secure essential resources, justify their strategic importance, collaborate and compete, and engage in civic participation and politics. Yet the topic has rarely focused upon the built and natural environments; and research on environmental justice (as a sister of social justice) has lagged despite longstanding concerns of environmental racism and strong interest in the development and sustainment of community-based practices, programs, and policies in response to environmental degradation. We provide a brief vision of macro practice, education, research, and theory that is (1) centered in environmental justice and (2) rooted in what managers and leaders do within organizations and communities. Our analysis identifies novel and needed directions for the future, as we imply that important theoretical and conceptual perspectives supporting macro practice, programming, and research are being unmoored by environmental dislocations facing targeted communities.


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