The Study of Placelessness: Toward a Conceptual Framework

By Amanda Hooykaas.

Published by The Sustainability Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Within Canada there is a trend toward placelessness; people do not form senses of place but rather remain transient within spaces. The effects of placelessness impact not only individuals, but also communities, and ultimately the natural landscape as well. This paper suggests that relationships to place vary greatly and are dependent, in part, upon populations, economics, technology, and geography. Should the sense of place be absent, then stewardship is impossible for stewardship can only be achieved through the commitment of placed people. Placelessness is finally conceptualized and defined through the discussion of place.

Keywords: Place, Placelessness, Stewardship, Canada, Individual, Society, Natural Landscape

The International Journal of Environmental, Cultural, Economic and Social Sustainability, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp.295-304. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.152MB).

Amanda Hooykaas

Ph.D. Student, Department of Geography and Environmental Management, University of Waterloo, Orillia, Ontario, Canada

Amanda Hooykaas studies human ecology and the relationship between people, place, and stewardship. Her research seeks to understand the history of human interactions with the natural world: how we depend on our natural landscapes to sustain our social and psychological lives, how modifications we make to our landscapes affect us, and how our ideas of nature shape our relationships with the world around us. As a Ph.D. Candidate, Hooykaas is examining the concept of ‘sense of place’ in Northern resource-based communities affected by existing & proposed hydro- electric projects. She considers the relationship between place identification, resource development, local stewardship, and the implications for sustainable governance.


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