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    Hey everyone,

    I'm just about to graduate with a geography degree and have been thinking about career choices etc. This year I've been doing some environmental planning modules and have found it really interesting. I've seen a couple of environmental consultancy jobs online and for a while was debating about whether to try for them... they all ask for an "environmental-related degree" something similar... does geography count as one?
    I've met one person who graduated in 2007 who became an environmental consultant with a geography degree, does anyone know if this is still possible?

    I've thought about doing a masters degree, but environmental planning isn't an area with abundant jobs atm (where is :rolleyes:), so I don't really want to waste £6000 and a year out of my life in case the economy's worse this time next year.

    Also please don't tell me I should have thought more about my degree choice. :rolleyes:
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    Yep, I know a couple of recent grads who've gone into environmental consultancy of one form or another.

    I'm also a geographer graduating this year by the way :gthumb:

    I am also looking to pursue an environmental route. However, I have some reservations about consultancy. Whilst I recognize that corporate responsibility is generally improving regarding the environment, a lot of the work seems to be in compliance consulting of one form or another, helping companies just to tick the relevant boxes to meet legal guidelines and minimize outlay via environmental levies. This is likely to frustrate me because legislation isn't all that tight in a lot of areas and in my view doesn't do enough to protect biodiversity and guard against resource overexploitation, climatic impacts and other damages. EI assessment work is perhaps more dubious, because whilst your job is ostensibly to asses environmental (sometimes also social) impacts, I fear there may be significant pressure to support the interests of the company or client you're working for (through careful data representation/ statistical manipulation and so on). I don't wish to be conspiratorial, but I think it would be naive to assume the vast majority of corporations have any concern for the environment beyond economics, legal restrictions and a veneer for brand image. In short, to use a cliche, I'm concerned that the genuine environmentalist in me might have to 'sell his soul' in this sort of business.

    Have you thought about the ethical side of corporate environmentalism? What's your take?
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    (Original post by uthred50)
    Yep, I know a couple of recent grads who've gone into environmental consultancy of one form or another.

    I'm also a geographer graduating this year by the way :gthumb:

    I am also looking to pursue an environmental route. However, I have some reservations about consultancy. Whilst I recognize that corporate responsibility is generally improving regarding the environment, a lot of the work seems to be in compliance consulting of one form or another, helping companies just to tick the relevant boxes to meet legal guidelines and minimize outlay via environmental levies. This is likely to frustrate me because legislation isn't all that tight in a lot of areas and in my view doesn't do enough to protect biodiversity and guard against resource overexploitation, climatic impacts and other damages. EI assessment work is perhaps more dubious, because whilst your job is ostensibly to asses environmental (sometimes also social) impacts, I fear there may be significant pressure to support the interests of the company or client you're working for (through careful data representation/ statistical manipulation and so on). I don't wish to be conspiratorial, but I think it would be naive to assume the vast majority of corporations have any concern for the environment beyond economics, legal restrictions and a veneer for brand image. In short, to use a cliche, I'm concerned that the genuine environmentalist in me might have to 'sell his soul' in this sort of business.

    Have you thought about the ethical side of corporate environmentalism? What's your take?
    Hmm that's interesting, I'd not fully thought it through. Surely in most situations the 'do nothing' approach would be best environmentally, I guess it would involve a lot of trying to make the impacts seem minimal... It seems to me though, that whatever area careers-wise you go into involves a certain amount of 'soul-selling' and self-justification- I'm also applying for jobs in the public and third sectors and there's quite a lot of charities which don't quite live up to my exacting moral standards. I guess that's the problem with doing geography as a degree, it's basically just learning about how ****ed up the world is and pretty much every essay I've done at university has the word 'neoliberalism' or 'capitalism' in there somewhere. But that's how the world goes round I guess, you have to try and fit in there somewhere in order to make a living and I think I would feel happier working a job which has at least some environmental focus rather than, manufacturing planes or something.

    So can I ask what area you're thinking of going into?
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    (Original post by deadwing)
    Hmm that's interesting, I'd not fully thought it through. Surely in most situations the 'do nothing' approach would be best environmentally, I guess it would involve a lot of trying to make the impacts seem minimal... It seems to me though, that whatever area careers-wise you go into involves a certain amount of 'soul-selling' and self-justification- I'm also applying for jobs in the public and third sectors and there's quite a lot of charities which don't quite live up to my exacting moral standards. I guess that's the problem with doing geography as a degree, it's basically just learning about how ****ed up the world is and pretty much every essay I've done at university has the word 'neoliberalism' or 'capitalism' in there somewhere. But that's how the world goes round I guess, you have to try and fit in there somewhere in order to make a living and I think I would feel happier working a job which has at least some environmental focus rather than, manufacturing planes or something.

    So can I ask what area you're thinking of going into?
    You're right that there seems to be a degree of soul-selling in most well-paid city careers. You're also right that with the way most companies currently operate, the environment generally figures as a set of costs or damages to be minimised. I want to move on from resource exploitation as a foundation of economic growth, toward a new system where resources are fully sustainable and their extraction does not harm biodiversity and pump gigatonnes of carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere, whilst we simultaneously restore the land we have degraded. For-profit-corporations and governments alike are too old-guard with too many vested interests to make such systemic changes happen at anywhere near the speed they need to happen at.

    So I don't want to work for government or profiteering corporations. I've been working with a partner on an eco-business for 6 months or so, which should launch by the end of this year. Meanwhile, I'll also be applying to various charities and NGOs to hopefully provide myself with the option of a secure income should I need a little longer to make a success of the business venture
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    (Original post by uthred50)
    You're right that there seems to be a degree of soul-selling in most well-paid city careers. You're also right that with the way most companies currently operate, the environment generally figures as a set of costs or damages to be minimised. I want to move on from resource exploitation as a foundation of economic growth, toward a new system where resources are fully sustainable and their extraction does not harm biodiversity and pump gigatonnes of carbon dioxide and other pollutants into the atmosphere, whilst we simultaneously restore the land we have degraded. For-profit-corporations and governments alike are too old-guard with too many vested interests to make such systemic changes happen at anywhere near the speed they need to happen at.

    So I don't want to work for government or profiteering corporations. I've been working with a partner on an eco-business for 6 months or so, which should launch by the end of this year. Meanwhile, I'll also be applying to various charities and NGOs to hopefully provide myself with the option of a secure income should I need a little longer to make a success of the business venture
    That'd be nice but I don't think it's happening any time soon!

    What's your eco-business in? I'd really like to work for a charity too, but I think a lot of other people want a nice job like that too, and I don't particularly want to be doing unpaid internships for years before getting a proper job. That's why I'm trying to think of private sector jobs I would like to do too, just to broaden my search a bit
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    (Original post by deadwing)
    That'd be nice but I don't think it's happening any time soon!

    What's your eco-business in? I'd really like to work for a charity too, but I think a lot of other people want a nice job like that too, and I don't particularly want to be doing unpaid internships for years before getting a proper job. That's why I'm trying to think of private sector jobs I would like to do too, just to broaden my search a bit
    Indeed, but it needs to be made to happen. We're working on biotic decarbonisation strategy and land restoration projects for Europe (for the time being), with a number of entrepreneurial income streams to fund the operation.

    The NGO jobs can be quite competitive, yep, but not any more so than consultancy etc: if you cast your net wide enough you should land something you would get paid for!
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    (Original post by uthred50)
    Indeed, but it needs to be made to happen. We're working on biotic decarbonisation strategy and land restoration projects for Europe (for the time being), with a number of entrepreneurial income streams to fund the operation.

    The NGO jobs can be quite competitive, yep, but not any more so than consultancy etc: if you cast your net wide enough you should land something you would get paid for!
    Ooh, sounds... complicated!

    I hope so! Thanks for replying anyway.
 
 
 
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