Environmental Data Justice

Our working group meets every Thursday from 2:30pm EST – 3:30pm EST online. If you are interested in joining, please e-mail edj@envirodatagov.org.

Who are we?

The Environmental Data Justice (EDJ) Working Group works with the productive frictions between emerging data justice concerns and long standing principles of environmental justice. While data justice has challenged the nonconsensual use of data in surveillance practices, policing, and racial profiling, environmental justice movements often call for increased, open, and participatory data in order to document environmental racism and inequality. The EDJ Working Group recognizes the many conflicting justice concerns that data manifests and aims to bring together research communities to struggle together across these differences with a commitment to intersectional justice.

The EDJ Working Group is interested in documenting and analyzing all forms of environmental harms, including, corporate and government practices of manipulating and withholding data, as well as government failures to adequately collect and use data. We also aspire to move beyond theories of change based primarily on proving environmental harms to communities, lands, and bodies. Instead, our goal is to facilitate collaborative, action-based research that creates civic technologies, environmental data infrastructures, and equitable and transparent data care practices. To this end, our work includes critical assessments of existing models, infrastructures, and practices of data collection, storage, and dissemination, as well as projects that generate alternative kinds of knowledge, technologies, and imaginaries towards more just worlds. In these ways we hope to contribute to an open and public conversation between the growing data justice and environmental justice communities.

The EDJ Working Group hosted in February 2019 a public event, ‘Environmental Data Justice: Vision and Values,’ that brought together grassroots organizations, activists, academics, and students to share experiences and learn from one another. We are glad to share a summary and the recording of the online event on our blog.

This public event prompted us to develop an EDJ Syllabus 1.0 based in activist and academic work bridging across environmental justice and digital/data justice movements. We look forward to developing it collaboratively, with anybody who wants to contribute.

Building on this first online event and syllabus development, the EDJ Working Group hosted with GreenRoots‘ Environmental Chelsea Organizers (ECO) an ‘EJxYouth Summit‘ on November 16th, 2019. The online event gathered a diverse range of speakers to share resources on youth organizing in environmental and social justice movements. 

Past and Future EDJ Events

  • November 16th, 2019: EJx Youth SummitBuilding on the first public event, the EDJ Working Group and GreenRoots‘ Environmental Chelsea Organizers (ECO) are hosting a youth-led online event. The EJxYouth Summit livestreams a diverse range of speakers to share resources on youth organizing in environmental and social justice movements. Please join the discussion by registering for the event, or watch the livestream here.
  • February 28th, 2019: Environmental Data Justice: Vision and ValuesThe EDJ Working Group hosted in February 2019 a first public event to start off a series of conversations at the intersection of Data Justice and Environmental Justice work.  The online event brought together grassroots organizations, activists, academics, and students to share experiences and learn from one another. A summary  of this collective discussion, as well as the recording of the event is available on our blog.

EDJ Resources

We welcome and are seeking collaborators interested in joining our work. Our current projects include:

    • Offering an EDJ Framework (read our initial thoughts from our day-long event preceding the 2017 Annual Meeting of the Society for the Social Study of Science)
    • Undertaking collective writing projects with and for public, policy and academic communities.
    • Critically analyzing present environmental databases
    • Building networks and relations with environmental and data justice activists and scholars
    • Making technologies and expanding practices of visualization, mapping, and archiving
    • Creating alternative visions of alternative environmental data justice practices

If you are interested in joining our work or learning more, please contact edj@envirodatagov.org.