Global warming, over-fishing, famines, water shortages, organic food, the loss of rare animal species, fair trade coffee, deforestation, geopolitical struggles over oil and gas supplies, and desertification: these are among the signature issues of our time. They raise important questions about how we currently – and should in future – organise the relationships between societies and the natural resources and environments upon which they depend. This course addresses these questions. It will provide a thorough training in the principles and practices of environmental governance. It is targeted at three audiences: those wishing to pursue a career in environmental regulation and management; those wishing to do further research on these topics; and current environmental professionals wishing to update their knowledge.
The degree is taught in such a way that students develop a wide range of both generic and subject-specific skills. Though the core teaching staff belong to the Geography discipline in the School of Environment and Development, the degree draws upon the expertise of the Society-Environment Research Group (SERG). This group involves over 10 researchers from SED and the School of Social Science. These researchers have distinguished records of theoretical, empirical and applied research in a range of geographical and environmental settings. These include work on mining in the south Pacific and French Guyana, on land rights in southern Africa, on bioprospecting in central America, on conservation projects in central Africa, on GMOs in Britain, and on water management in Ecuador and Spain - to name but a few.