As I am writing this, the lands and people of this world are being ravaged by yet another war, adding, what feels like, crisis upon crisis upon crisis. The crisis in Syria is still ongoing. Last year, the IPCC issued its starkest warning about global warming yet. Millions of species continue to die, week by week. Precisely two years ago, when we launched the EPT Agenda 2023, COVID-19 had spread around the world and begun unfolding in full, changing much of our world in the process. What this new war will bring is yet to be seen. What seems without question is that we must hope and work toward the best in 8 billion different ways and more.
Throughout the history of humanity, wars have always also been about land and resources in one way or another, if not ‘the most visible surface-symptom of the Anthropocene’ (Ahmed, 2019), our current geological epoch defined by ecological calamity that is driven by fear and hatred of everything that is Other (Levinas, 1991). And just like the COVID-19 pandemic escalated the need for envisioning, exploring, enhancing and employing new and more peaceful ways of coexisting with all the Others we share this planet with (EPA, 2019), so does this new war. Far from claiming any particular excellence here, the EPA is fundamentally built on and around the idea of making however small contributions to more solidarity and peaceful coexistence on this planet (Maric & Nicholls, 2021).
And so on the note of making contributions towards a better world, and precisely two years after the launch of the EPT Agenda 2023, I am happy to share that the EPT education inspiration-base is now live here. If you haven’t been following the work of the EPT Agenda 2023, one of our grand aspirations with the attempt to bring planetary health, environmental and sustainability perspectives into physiotherapy education around the world was to create a place where we can share what we are thinking, trying and doing in this effort so that we could support and inspire each other, and invite ideas and support from others to improve on our efforts.
Filip Maric (PhD)
A/Prof, EPA Founder & Executive Chair
Filip Maric is Associate professor at UiT The Arctic University of Norway, and founder of the Environmental Physiotherapy Association. He is interested in the outer rims of healthcare and physiotherapy, philosophy, ethics, #EnviroPT, environmental post/humanities, planetary health and sea kayaking.
During the middle of last year, we already published a first progress report indicating a few things that were happing throughout the early stages of the process (Maric et al., 2021). Some nine months later, we have arrived at the next milestone and are able to share the first few entries on the EPT education inspiration-base with you. See for yourself, but at least in my view, we have come a long way. The breadth of topics already covered, the courage and creativity to try new ways forward, and learn along the way are going precisely in the direction we had hoped. It is inspiring and we are so grateful to everyone who has contributed to any of the small steps along the way.
To be clear, and just as we stated in our prior progress report, much more remains to be done and this first selection of entries represents merely a (or: another) beginning. As our project continues, and the lists of over 500 individual signatories, 30 supporting organisations, and 44 participating institutions on the EPT Agenda 2023 continues to grow, we will continue to add more entries, refine what we are doing, how we are presenting it, and a lot more. And as we clearly state in every single entry, if you have questions, ideas or any other feedback on our work, we would so love to hear from you. The work of envisioning, exploring, enhancing and employing more peaceful ways to coexist on this planet needs all minds, hands and hearts on deck. And even if you don’t find time to get in touch with us, we hope you will find some inspiration in what we are putting together as we continue to learn.