Media lacks direction with geography, petition says

October 27, 2006

The media are putting society at risk by failing to acknowledge the vital role of geography, more than 100 geographers have claimed.

Academics from some 50 universities have sent a petition to Tessa Jowell, the Culture and Media Secretary, warning that geography education is vital if issues such as climate change, sustainable energy, terrorism, poverty, immigration and natural disasters are to be fully understood and managed.

And they believe that, compared with science and history, the media are neglecting the subject.

Nicola Ansell, a signatory and a senior lecturer in human geography at Brunel University, was concerned at the steady decline in pupils taking geography, blaming this partly on the way the media portrays geographers.

"To be fair, there is a lot of geography in the media, but it isn't labelled as such," she said.

"The idea is to persuade the media to recognise geography, explicitly as well as implicitly."

The petition can be signed at www.passion4geography.co.uk .

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