More than one-half of the world's people live below the internationally defined poverty line of less than U.S. $2 a day....Nearly one-third of rural residents worldwide lack access to safe drinking water....Africa's infant mortality rate is nearly 15 times that of the developed world... North Americans use over eight times as much energy per person as Latin Americans.
This class is designed to help students develop an understanding of economic, environmental, and social problems that face countries of the world and to explore policies and plans that might help alleviate these issues. Specific attention will be given to poverty, population dynamics, urbanization, health, and the environment in countries around the world.
A persistent theme throughout the class will be the great disparities within and among nations as indicated by basic demographic variables and other quality of life indicators. The class includes discussion of how we use and misuse statistical information in forming opinions and policies.
Students will develop a refined literacy as regards the meaning and utility of global, national and cross-cultural statistics and measurements used to assess the well being of people and the planet. Finally, we will look for positive examples of individual, organizational and national leadership that affectively address the problems we examine.
This course deals with issues evolving around cities as the nexus for environmental challenges. It will help students understand the relationship between environmental sustainability and development. In this class, we review the historical efforts in making and creating “green cities” in the fields of public health and planning, look at the elements of urban form and their environmental implications, and explore more earth-friendly methods in planning and construction currently practiced in the U.S. and internationally.
Specific areas of focus include land use planning, transportation planning, community and neighborhood design, and green buildings.