Call for Papers for ESJ's Spring 2023 Special Issue on Climate Change and Care


SPECIAL ISSUE (Volume 9, Issue 2, Spring 2023)


Guest Editors:

Ulrich Teucher and Dënë Cheecham-Uhrich


“Our climate is changing before our eyes” said Petteri Taalas, president of the World Meteorological Association in a recent State of Global Climate Report. Key findings denote a continuing and consistent rise of sea levels, warming of the oceans, increase of carbon dioxide, and soaring of average global temperatures – with a distinct possibility that global yearly temperatures may exceed an average increase of 1.5 0C already by 2026. The science is clear: the planet is facing a climate emergency and we need to shift into emergency gear (UNEP, 2022). To maintain global warming at 1.5 0C will require world carbon emissions to be halved by 2030, and net zero to be reached by 2050 (IPCC, 2018). However, how to act has been less than clear: while some hope for (as of yet unproven) large scale technological solutions (IPCC, 2018), others critique the uses of technologies to instrumentalize and colonialize the planet into a universal warehouse for every human need. Others, again, demand government and policy regulations while others argue for widespread individual actions. In the meantime, distress (‘climate anxiety’) and moral suffering (Halifax, 2022) have been rising (particularly among young people; Lancet, 2021), and outright grief over what could be lost forever: “How are we not doubled over in pain?” (Abbott, 2020). Whatever would need to happen, it appears that actions need to occur in a global resolve. This, however, is not new: Carl Sagan (1985) and others already called for it as far back as the 1985 US Senate hearings on climate change.

What would be the barriers and enablers of a global resolve for actions that could address climate change? Impediments to actions may differ according to choices of psychologies, religions, cosmologies, politics, to name just a few. More than 2,500 years ago, Buddha already decried a psychological basis, “Everything is burning . . . with the fire of greed, the fire of dislike, the fire of stupidity” that would be driving literal burning and wastelands (Batchelor, 2020), of contemporary fossil-fuel dependent economic growth, wars cutting apart countries, pipelines cutting though wilderness and Indigenous lands, and highways cutting through poor neighbourhoods (Halifax, 2022). For Robin Wall Kimmerer (2020), the sources of the climate catastrophe may well go back to Christianity’s origin story that banished first humans from their garden into exile, to colonialize the world and hope for an afterlife in another world. By contrast, Indigenous cosmologies and creation stories embrace the gardening of the living world, in this word. Chinese political philosopher Tingyang Zhao (2016) locates the difficulties of acting on global matters in the inherent national and international competitiveness between nation states. Instead, Zhao proposes a global form of government that attends to “Tianxia” (“everything under the heavens”). However, in the light of current tensions and wars in the world, such forms of global resolve against climate change may currently seem far from possible.

Then again, as important as it is to understand the emergency of climate change, as well as the impediments to widespread actions, it may be as productive and hopeful to consider possibilities and developments of resistance, creativity, and interdisciplinarity. Traditional colonizing universalisms may be coming to an end, with anthropocentric and dualistic foundations of dominant worldviews being called into question and decolonialized, including divisions between culture and nature, human and all that is more-than-human, while emphasizing social justice (Pelluchon, 2022). In fact, the developing broader awareness of systemic interdependence, of relationships with everything, ironically impressed on us also by the global nature of climate change, demonstrates that interdependence is not a contract or moral ideal but, fundamentally, the very condition of life (Puig de la Bellacasa, 2017). This awareness of radical interdependence is said to be at the basis of what feminist ethics have identified as care (Kittay and Feder, cited in Puig de la Bellacasa, p. 70). In political scientist Joan Tronto’s words, care includes “everything that we do to maintain, continue, and repair ‘our world’ . . . which we seek to interweave in a complex, life sustaining web” (Tronto, cited in Puig de la Bellacasa, p. 69). This sense of care seems relational per se, expressed for example in some of the sacred and practical relationships that Indigenous peoples have had for millennia with the lands and waters under the skies that they have been living in (Kimmerer, 2021). In these ways, care may be what we choose to do in the weave of our lives and life - now. It is these possibilities of care that we would like to invite you to consider and explore as avenues to address climate action.

For our Spring 2023 thematic issue on Climate Change and Care, we seek submissions from community- and university-based researchers, scholars, and/or Elders, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, who are engaged in research, study or active exploration of applied methods or approaches that advance an understanding and appreciation of Climate Change and Care. Emphasizing the strengthening of deep collaboration-building practices in teaching, learning and research, we invite previously unpublished research articles, reports from the field, multimedia contributions and book reviews for our thematic issue. All submissions will undergo either editorial or peer review. Submissions for the Essays Section of the Journal will be subject to double, blind peer review, submissions to other Journal sections will undergo editorial review.

Essays to be subject to blind peer reviewing should:

  • Represent original, unpublished work that is not under consideration by other journals or collections of essays
  • Written in accessible language, to respect multidisciplinary nature of the Journal and the diversity of our readers. Acronyms and abbreviations should be kept to the minimum.
  • Be maximum 8,000 words
  • Include an abstract (200 words) and indicate up to five keywords
  • Be typed, double-spaced throughout, in 12-pt Times New Roman font
  • Be formatted in the American Psychological Association (APA) style, 7th edition
  • Have a separate cover page that includes the names, institutional affiliations, addresses, and contact information of all authors
  • Include author biography/ies (no more than 50 words per author) on a separate sheet
  • Indicate that appropriate Institutional Research Ethics Board approval was secured, if applicable
  • Be formatted and saved in Microsoft Word (no PDF please)
  • Be submitted in two versions; one should include all information to be published, and in the other copy information to be ‘blinded’ should be substituted with blank underlined spaces. Information to be ‘blinded’ includes all text or data that will have to be removed from the essay for blind peer review purposes
  • Submission should be accompanied by authors’ recommendations of at least four scholars, including community-based scholars when applicable, from the author’s field who the Journal may approach with the request to peer review of the issue’s contributions. Such recommendations should include the description of (a) the credentials of the prospective reviewers as well as (b) the professional distance between the authors and the proposed reviewers.


Please submit full manuscripts by August 15th, 2022.      

  • Deadlinefor all manuscripts:                         August 15, 2022
  • Projected Dateof publication:                       Spring 2023
  • Submissions to be submitted via:        

Works Cited:

Abbott, J. (Director, 2020). The magnitude of all things. Film.

Augustinus, C. and Alexander, S. (Co-Coordinators, 2022). In: Global Land Outlook, 2nd ed. UNCCD and GLO2.

Batchelor, S. (2021). Embracing extinction: Will Buddhism change to face humanity’s impending peril? In: Tricycle The Buddhist Review, Fall 2020.

Halifax, J. (2022). Courage in the midst of the climate catastrophe. Blog, Upaya Zen Centre.

IPCC (2018). Summary for Policymakers of IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.50C approved by governments.

Hickman, C., Marks, E., Pihkala, P., Clayton, S., Lewandowski, R. E., Mayall, E. E., ... & van Susteren, L. (2021). Climate anxiety in children and young people and their beliefs about government responses to climate change: A global survey. The Lancet Planetary Health5(12), e863-e873.

Kimmerer, R. W. (2020). Braiding sweetgrass: Indigenous wisdom, scientific knowledge, and the teachings of plants. Minneapolis, MS: Milkweed Editions.

Pelluchon, C. (2022). Changer la vie. Zeit Online, 17,

Puig de la Bellacasa, M. (2017). Matters of Care: Speculative ethics in more than human worlds. Minneapolis, MS: University of Minnesota Press.

Sagan, C. (1985). Testament on Climate Change before US Senate.

UNEP (2022). The Climate Emergency.

Taalas, P. (2022). “Our climate is changing before our eyes”

Zhao, T.  (2016). All under heaven: The Tianxia system for a possible world order. Oakland, CA: University of California Press.


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