Investigation of University Students’ Values over Environment through Mutual Educational Workshops toward Integrated Watershed Management

Author(s): Taishi Yazawa
Email (s):
Institution or organization of origin: College of Science and Engineering, Ritsumeikan University
Country: Japan


For more practical integrated watershed management (IWM), people’s values over the environment should be taken into account the decision-making process. People’s participation is needed for successful IWM because they are the ones who have a strong interest in, knowledge of, and experience with the local environment. Fostering the next generations who have interests and knowledge is also a challenge in the context of IWM. This research aims to develop a new methodology to investigate university students’ values over the environment through mutual educational workshops and text mining. Workshops making the customer journey map (CJM) and the value graph (VG) were held for university students to enhance an open-ended discussion and obtain their opinions regarding two environmental topics, water and waste, and associated problems. The participants discussed “how the problem occurs” and “why the problem has to be managed” while making CJM and VG, respectively. The obtained texts were then analyzed by text mining. As an example of the results, for water quality degradation, university students tend to think that their daily actions, such as throwing garbage, cause the problem; and those actions are usually triggered by their selfish emotions. In addition, they think that water quality management is needed to conserve/improve their quality of life. We hope that the methodology developed in this research can provide time for people to think of the environmental problems together and learn from one another so that their participation in watershed management activities could be facilitated in the future.

View the author’s explanation