20819 - MANAGEMENT AND ECONOMICS FOR SUSTAINABILTY - MODULE 2 (ENVIRONMENTAL ECONOMICS AND CLIMATE CHANGE)
Course taught in English
Go to class group/s: 26
Class-group lessons delivered on campus
Economic thinking has a lot to contribute to the solution of environmental problems. It sheds light on incentives shaping the interaction of social actors with the environment and on why resource exploitation happens in the first place. Economic thinking can also contribute to designing solutions to several environmental problems. The objective of the course is to endow students with a set of tools that will expand their way of thinking about crucial problems like climate change, biodiversity loss, and air pollution, and to make them reflect on ethical questions regarding the tradeoffs between key dimensions of sustainability.
The course provides students with a sound understanding of environmental and climate change economics. It examines the key role of economic activities as drivers of environmental degradation and climate change, and shows how economic tools can be used to investigate environmental problems and to design policies to address them. The students will rethink some key economic concepts like efficiency, externalities, and welfare aggregation, from an applied perspective. A set of interactive sessions will allow students to solidify their understanding of environmental economics through a hands-on approach.
At the end of the course, students will have a proper understanding of key environmental economics and policy concepts, including:
Welfare Economics and the Environment
Sustainability and Intertemporally
Environmental policy instruments
Basic dynamics of our planet’s climate system
Main economic implications of climate change
Basics of Energy Economics
Current status of International Climate Negotiations
At the end of the course, the student will be able to:
Understand the link between the environment and social and political actors like businesses and governments
Understand many of the current international and European environmental policies
Contribute to preserving our planet by employing solid scientific knowledge
Make everyday decisions knowing what they imply in terms of their environmental footprint.
- Face-to-face lectures
- Exercises (exercises, database, software etc.)
- Case studies /Incidents (traditional, online)
- Group assignments
- Interactive class activities (role playing, business game, simulation, online forum, instant polls)
Tests and exercises will serve the purpose to understand some of the key concepts related to environmental policies.
Group assignments are explained in the section about the exam.
In class we will use interactive activities to explore the role of public goods, international climate cooperation and many other topics.
Two Group Assignments, a Short Final Exam and a minimum attendance rate are compulsory for attending students.
1. Group Assignment 1 * (Video): 30% of the Final Grade.
Each group will produce a two/three-minute video explaining a key concept covered during the course. The topic will be previously approved by the Course Instructor. Everyone will grade the videos produced by the other groups. A prize will be assigned to the best video. Detailed information and examples of video will be provided in class and made available on Blackboard.
2. Group Assignment 2* (Short Memo): 40% of the Final Grade.
Each group will work on a brief written policy memo elaborating on a topic covered during the course. The topic will be previously approved by the Course Instructor and may be the same as the one chosen for the video. The memo will be presented in class in the last few sessions of the course. Active participation during the other groups’ presentations is compulsory. Detailed information on how to write the memo and how to prepare the presentation will be provided in class and made available on Blackboard.
3. Final Written Exam* (Short version with respect to non-attending students): 30% of the Final Grade.
A minimum grade of 18/30 in the final written exam is required to pass the course. Attending students can keep their attendance status – keep their assignments’ grades and take the short written exam - until the end of the Academic Year.
4. Class Active Participation Prize (1 point) to the 5 most active students.
The assignments will cover one of the key topics related to environmental economics. The presentation of the memo to the class will help students to improve their communication skills and face questions from an audience. The preparation of a short video will help the student to improve her/his communications abilities and to deepen their understanding of the topic through the simplification that a short video preparation requires.
·The written exam is divided into two sections. The first set of questions requires very short answers and ensures that the student is familiar with the basic definitions and concepts related to environmental economics and the policies that might help us deal with environmental issues. The second set of questions requires longer answers and allows the student to elaborate on connections that are visible at a deeper level of understanding of the topic.
Final written exam (Long Version): 100% of the Final Grade
A minimum grade of 18/30 in the final written exam is required to pass the course.
Note that if you choose this type of exam you are still welcome to attend all classes!
The written exam is divided into two sections. The first set of questions requires very short answers and ensures that the student is familiar with the basic definitions and concepts related to environmental economics and the policies that might help us deal with environmental issues. The second set of questions requires longer answers and allows the student to elaborate on connections that are visible at a deeper level of understanding of the topic.
Barry Field and Martha K. Field, Environmental Economics, 8th Edition (2021).
A list of further readings will be provided by the instructors before the beginning of the course.