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School of Education

Dr Christopher Turner

Dr Christopher Turner

Honorary Lecturer



Although Chris started his working life as a research biologist in the field of behavioural ecology, a major part of his professional career has been spent in education. As the Principal of a Community College for over 20 years he witnessed the power of the arts in engaging children, young people and adults in collaborative and transdisciplinary learning experiences within the College and beyond. His research and writing interests are in the aesthetics and ecology of education from which he has developed the theoretical concepts of aesthoecology. He is a member of the Creativity and Emergent Educational Futures Network at the University of Exeter and an Associate Fellow, Centre for Climate Change and Sustainability Education at University College London.

He has spent time as a research associate at the National College for School Leadership and has lectured widely on educational leadership, community education and aesthoecology both in the UK and abroad. He is a member of the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Fellow of the Linnean Society of London and sits in the Senate of the Open University. In 2001 he was awarded an OBE for services to education.


OBE BSc(Hons) PGCE (London) MA (Open) EdD (Exeter) FRSA FLS

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Research interests

Aesthoecology, alternative futures in education, educational and ethical responses to the global climate crisis, continuing education, philosophy of aesthetics, philosophy of consciousness.

Recent Publications and Conference Presentations

Chappell, K., Turner, C. and Wren, H. (Eds.). (Publication 2024) Creative Ruptions for Emergent Educational Futures. Palgrave MacMillan

Turner, C. (2022) Aesthoecology and its Significance to Relationality in Education.. Presentation at Relation Centered Education Network (RCEN), Annual Conference 11th – 13th June 2022, on-line (12th June 2022)

Turner, C. & Hall, E. (in press). Drawing and the Global Climate Emergency. In: Art, Sustainability and Learning Communities: Call to Action. Intellect Books.

Hall, E. and Turner, C. (in press). An Aesthoecological Approach to Professional Learning Communities. In: Art, Sustainability and Learning Communities. Intellect Books.


Turner, C. & Hall, E. (2021). Transformation through aesthoecology: affectivity, connectivity, and the role of art in promoting transdisciplinarity.  Innovative Practice in Higher Education, GLAD-HE Special Edition, University of Staffordshire.

Hall, E. & Turner, C. (2021) Aesthoecology and Its Implications for Art and Design Education: Examining the Foundations. [Online conference presentation]. National Society for Art and Design Education, Annual Conference, March 26 - 28, 2021.

Hall, E. & Turner, C. (2021). Aesthoecology and Its Implications for Art and Design Education: Examining the Foundations. International Journal of Art and Design Education, NSEAD and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Sgouridou, C & Turner, C. (2019). ‘Watch this liminal space: The future of possibility and the possibility of the future’.  Presentation at Education and Post Democracy Conference, First International Conference of Scuola Democratica, Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy (6th – 8th June, 2019).

Turner, C. (2019) Education as Aesthoecology. Doctoral thesis, University of Exeter


Osberg, D., Turner, C. & Sgouridou, C. (2018). PluriLogical anticipation: Overcoming normative ethics through symbiotic play. Conference Workshop at Exploring PluriLogicality Symposium, Graduate School of Education, University of Exeter. (July 2018).


Turner, C. (2017) Education as Aesthoecology. Poster presentation. Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain, Annual Conference, New College, Oxford, March 2017.

Chave, J. G., Chave, S. S. & Turner, C. (2017). Opening and exploring spaces of appearance: techniques workshop addressing issues of how to keep the future open. 2nd International Conference on Anticipation, Senate House, University of London, November 8th – 10th, 2017.

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