The Ecological Citizen: A peer-reviewed ecocentric journal


Long article

Ecodemocracy: Operationalizing ecocentrism through political representation for non-humans

Joe Gray, Anna Wienhues, Helen Kopnina, Jennifer DeMoss

The Ecological Citizen Vol 3 No 2 2020: 166–77

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First published: 1 April 2020  |  Permanent URL  |  Download citation in RIS format


Abstract

The authors present a general argument for the political representation of non-humans that sits under the broad umbrella of ecocentrism but that does not rely on one specific non-anthropocentric ethical theory. As such, they hope to help move the debate towards a consensus on the need for such political representation. The argument itself has two main prongs. The first is an empirical one: It has the potential to give more effective representation of non-human interests than the alternative of simply having those interests accounted for through internalization within human needs and wishes. The second combines empirical and normative elements: It can add to the development of Earth jurisprudence by envisioning political decision-making processes that are broadly inclusive, so that the protection of non-human interests does not rely solely on legal protection in terms of, for example, tools employed during court hearings on a case-by-case basis. Two illustrative examples are presented, and the work of the the Global Ecocentric Network for Implementing Ecodemocracy (GENIE) is introduced.

 

Keywords

Conservation, Earth jurisprudence, Ecodemocracy, Ecological empathy, Ecological ethics

 


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