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Graduate Study in Global Environments

Students can pursue an interest in global environmental issues through seminars, tutorials and individual research projects. To date, climate change has been the most popular of the global environments issue for graduate study at CEEP, but other areas of interest include international trade and environment, globalization, and biodiversity protection. Global environmental issues have also been examined in the context of sustainable development and the implications for ecological justice. Students in all four degrees sponsored by CEEP may develop specializations in this topic.

Political Economy of the Environment

Relations between societies and nature are, and have always been, complex. But contemporary relations and their manifestations, such as acid rain, urban air pollution, deforestation, thinning of the upper atmospheric ozone layer, endangered species, threats to biodiversity, and the prospect of global warming, are raising concerns that fundamental problems in society-nature relations exist. This course reviews several theories and policy orientations ranging from Neo-Malthusianism to ecological economics and eco-Marxism. Policy case studies covering such issues as Environmental Justice, Environment and Public Health, Trade and the Environment, Global Climate Change, and Sustainable Development are used to evaluate the current range of political-economic explanations of nature-society relations.

Technology, Environment and Society Seminar
The interrelationships of technology, environment and society are the focus of this doctoral seminar. Over the last two centuries, forces of industrialization and urbanization have transformed economic, social and political life, and the natural environment. A range of theories is examined which seek to explain and assess these transformations, including those of Marx, Mumford, Ellul, and Shiva. The aim of the seminar is to foster the development of critical perspectives on social and environmental transformation.

International Perspectives on
Energy and Environmental Policy
This course analyzes the international aspects of energy and environment as they interact with: politics, society, economics, technology and resources. The course focuses on interrelationships among energy, environment and development from international perspectives. It considers various energy and environmental policy alternatives and how they may or may not contribute to a sustainable world.

Resources, Development and the Environment
The seminar addresses food, resource, energy and population issues in relationship to economic development and the earth’s energy/resource base and “carrying capacity.” The focus is on the feasibility of sustainable development under conditions of rapid population growth, industrialization and capitalism. The globalization of the economic system and its impact on the environment, and the North-South debate over environment and development are given detailed attention.

Topics in the Political Economy of
Energy and Environment
A tutorial surveying the literatures of political economy and political ecology as approaches for the analysis of interlocking energy-environment issues, including climate change, urban pollution, acid rain, and catastrophic environmental risk (e.g., accompanying the reliance on nuclear power and large-scale fossil fuel and hydropower facilities).

Readings in Climate Change Politics and Policy
International climate change politics and the policy responses under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change are examined analytically and critically. Key issues and the character of the political contests underway are examined from an interdisciplinary perspective, using contributions from science and technology studies, international relations, environmental and political theory, sociology, environmental economics, environmental philosophy, and global environmental governance. Prominent philosophical and theoretical contributions are examined, with particular interest in global environmental commons regimes, ecological justice, and global environmental governance.

Readings in Environmental Justice
Advanced readings in political economy and political ecology are used in this tutorial to examine key theoretical and conceptual problems in the field of environmental justice. These include: the interrelationships of race, class and gender in patterns of environmental injustice; law, policy and environmental justice; North-South contexts of environmental justice; relationships between social and environmental commodification.

Readings in the Political Economy of
Energy and Environment
Advanced readings in political economy and political ecology are used in this tutorial to examine key theoretical and conceptual problems in current energy-environment-society relationships. These include: the prospect of climate change, the “normal” pollution/ “normal” accident issue, growth-oriented versus democratic economies, the over- consumption and over-production theses, and environmental commodification.

Correspondence Information:
Center for Energy Environmental Policy
University of Delaware - 278 Graham Hall - Newark, Delaware 19716
phone: (302)831-8405 facsimile: (302)831-3098