Dr. Jame Schaefer

Jame SchaeferJame Schaefer, Ph.D. 
Professor Emerita

Jame Schaefer (Ph.D., Marquette University, 1994, Systematics/Ethics) focuses on constructively relating theology, the natural sciences, and technology with special attention to religious foundations for ecological ethics.

She worked with faculty of other disciplines to develop the Interdisciplinary Minor in Environmental Ethics for which she served as Director on behalf of the College of Arts and Sciences 2001-2017, and advised Marquette Students for an Environmentally Active Campus 2002-2017. She involves faculty of various sciences in her courses, team-teaches with Physics an occasionally offered seminar on the origin and nature of the universe, and co-steers the Albertus Magnus Circle--an interdisciplinary faculty discussion group on religion-science issues. For her interdisciplinary efforts, she received a Religion and Science Course Award from the Templeton Foundation and a Quality and Excellence in Teaching Science and Religion Award from the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences. 

She convened the Theology and Ecology and the Theology and Global Warming interest groups for the Catholic Theological Society of America for several years and maintains membership in the American Academy of Religion, the Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences, the College Theology Society, the International Society for Environmental Ethics, the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, the Society for Conservation Biology, and the Society of Christian Ethics. She worked with an international team of scholars commissioned by the Higher Education Secretariat of the Society of Jesus to draft Healing Earth--an online interactive environmental science text motivated by Ignatian spirituality and oriented toward ethical action for use by seniors in Jesuit high schools and freshmen in Jesuit colleges throughout the world (http://healingearth.ijep.net), spearheaded a three-year project that yielded Guidelines for Interacting with Faith-Based Leaders and Communities: A Proposal by and for Members of the Society for Conservation Biology (2018), and compiled theological rationales for Judaic, Christian and Muslim communities in the Middle East and North Africa to individually and collaboratively address environmental problems under the auspices of the University of Connecticut’s Abrahamic Programs for Academic Collaboration in the MENA Region (2019).

Her publications include Theological Foundations for Environmental Ethics: Reconstructing Patristic and Medieval Concepts (Georgetown University Press, 2009), Confronting the Climate Crisis: Catholic Theological Perspectives (Marquette University Press, 2011), Environmental Justice and Climate Change: Assessing Pope Benedict XVI Ecological Vision for the Catholic Church in the United States (Lexington Books, 2013), essays in several edited volumes, articles in Cistercian Studies Quarterly, Environmental Ethics, Frontiers in Marine Science, Geosciences, International Journal for Climate Change Strategies and Management, Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture, Journal of Moral Theology, Theological Studies, and Worldviews: Environment, Culture, Religion, and the inaugural “Animals” entry in New Catholic Encyclopedia (2013).

Research Fields

  • Religion, Science, and Ethics
  • Religious Foundations for Ecological Ethics
  • Theology of Creation and Ethics