Sustainability: Theory and Practice

Course code ENVS3006Units 10Level 3000Faculty of Science and Information TechnologySchool of Environmental and Life Sciences

The course focuses on the theory and application of 'sustainability' one of the key concepts in environmental policy, ethics and practice. It critically examines the contested nature of sustainability and sustainable development; explores the key ideas and concepts of sustainability theory; and considers the links between theoretical debates and the practical dimensions of implementing sustainability. This course takes up the challenge of philosophers and scientists who argue that - nothing less than a transformation is needed - to move us towards a sustainable future. To do this it explores conceptual, ethical and practical tools for rethinking sustainability. This includes the application of insights from complexity theory, contemporary social thought, and non-western knowledges to reimagining cities, agriculture, everyday life, consumption and waste. As well, the course critically examines indicators and measures of sustainability and considers pathways and processes of transformation towards sustainability.

This is the compulsory 3000 level course for the Human Geography and the Environment major within the Bachelor of Arts program. This course will consolidate the knowledge and skills that students have acquired in previous courses for this major. Enrolment in this 3000 level compulsory course is based on the expectation that students have successfully completed the 1000 and 2000 level compulsory courses for this major, or have successfully completed at least 20 units of 3000 level directed courses from this major

In order to participate in this course, students must complete a compulsory Health and Safety requirement. Students will receive full information on this compulsory component in the course outline provided by the school.

Not to count with EMGT3070.

Available in 2015

Callaghan CampusSemester 2
Previously offered in 2014
ObjectivesAt the successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
1. explain and critically evaluate contested notions of sustainable development, and develop their own concept of sustainability with reference to values, policies and futures;
2. analyse current attempts to implement sustainability at local, regional and global levels;
3. use and critically evaluate indicators of sustainability;
4. analyse and comment on major issues in sustainability such as cities, agriculture, waste,and food lifestyle and consumption issues;
5. understand and apply key insights from complexity theory, contemporary social theory, non-western perspectives and transdisciplinary thinking to major issues in sustainability;
6. engage constructively with diverse groups in building more sustainable futures.
ContentTopics will be chosen from:
1. Introduction to contested notions of sustainability and sustainable development
2. Critical review of the history and theoretical basis of sustainability
3. Ethical stances for sustainability
4. Sustainability theory, including non-western knowledge systems, complexity theory and contemporary social theory
5. Rethinking sustainability case studies, including agriculture, cities, everyday life, consumption, waste, and food.
6. Assessment of sustainability initiatives and critical analysis of sustainability indicators
7. Pathways and possibilities for sustainable futures
Replacing Course(s)EMGT3070 Advanced Studies in Sustainability
TransitionNot to count for credit with EMGT3070.
Industrial Experience0
Assumed KnowledgeENVS1004 (previously EMGT1020) and ENVS2008 (previously EMGT2020) are recommended.
Students enrolled in the B Arts program - Human Geography and the Environment Major, must have successfully completed GEOG1020 and GEOG2080, OR at least 20 units of 3000 level directed courses from this major.
Modes of DeliveryInternal Mode
Teaching MethodsField Study
Assessment Items
Essays / Written AssignmentsTutorial assignments
Examination: Take Home
Presentations - TutorialSustainability issue
Reports- Research report on sustainability issue
- Field trip report
Contact HoursField Study: for 8 hour(s) per Term for Full Term
Lecture: for 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Tutorial: for 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Compulsory Components
Compulsory Course ComponentOHS-Safety Induction or Risk Assessment. In order to participate in this course, students must complete a compulsory safety and fieldwork induction.
Timetables2015 Course Timetables for ENVS3006