Checking date: 28/04/2023

Course: 2023/2024

Introduction to sustainable development and global governance
Master in Global Sustainable Development and Global Governance (Plan: 473 - Estudio: 376)

Coordinating teacher: OZEL SERBETÇI, ISIK

Department assigned to the subject: Social Sciences Department

Type: Compulsory
ECTS Credits: 6.0 ECTS


-Comprehension of the UN's 'Sustainable Development Goals' (SDGs), their prevalent challenges, the main initiatives undertaken to attain the SDGs, and their varying results. -Understanding about the governance of sustainable development (SD) at the local, regional, national, global and supranational levels. Analysis of the challenges of sustainability and governance from a critical and interdisciplinary point of view. -Acquiring a historical perspective on the environmental sustainability of global economic development, linked to the SDGs. -Knowledge of the main concepts of environmental science, including 'the earth system', its main components; critical assessment regarding the importance of those components for global, national and local environmental governance and public policies. -Learning the indicators on climate change in the past and present, along with past and present energy transitions, analysis of long-term changes in the environmental footprint of food production and consumption. -Ability to analyze perspectives and ideas in light of empirical reality such as the intensified process of globalization and fierce competition between countries, regions and companies.
Skills and learning outcomes
Description of contents: programme
1.Conceptualization and measurement of sustainable development (SD), its intertwined dimensions (socioeconomic and environmental) and historical evolution. 2. Survey of environmental change in global history 3. Analysis of the interaction between economic activity and cimate change since the Industrial Revolution; as well as the measurement of the said interaction. 4. Survey of the changes in land use, agri-food systems and harvesting the biosphere. 5. Resource extraction, energy transitions and economic growth in the long run. Links between fossil fuels use and industrialization 6.Identification of the key challenges of SD; disaggregated analysis of the concerning challenges (socioeconomic, environmental and political) for different geographies and countries at different income levels and with different political regimes; the phenomena of migration and "climate refugees" caused by unsustainability. 7. Measurement of sustainability 8. Key notions such as the 'anthropocene' and concepts like 'vulnerability', 'resilience' and adaptation in the context of SD along with their relevance in different countries and regions. 'Circular economy' and its respective instruments for diverse actors. 9.Survey of existing perspectives, models and strategies in SD promoted by multifarious agents at different levels such as international and regional organizations, national governments, NGOs, movements and individuals; a critical analysis of feasible trajectories regarding DS. 10.Analysis of the fragmented architecture of global governance in terms of SD and climate change; major institutions and the ways in which they facilitate cooperation (or fail to do so) on a global and/or regional scale. 11.The platforms and mechanisms situated in global environmental cooperation with different levels of effectiveness; principles, initiatives, agreements and norms at various levels by distinct agencies, groups and other actors. Mapping the interactions and power dynamics between multifarious stakeholders and mediation of interests. 12. Introduction to economics for environmental policy design, non market evaluation, mitigation policies 13. Economic valuation of future ecosystem services. 14. Survey of behavioral decision making, global public goods and collective action problem, impediments to behavioral change and determinant of Green Policy acceptance. 15. Current and prospective transformations regarding sustainable development policies and global governance in the context of the pandemic, the economic and geopolitical crisis at the global level.
Learning activities and methodology
This course uses various methodologies such as lectures and a number of different student-led classroom activities (discussions, small group work and presentations). The objective is to promote active participation of the students as well as their critical thinking and reflection on the topics covered in this course. Students are encouraged to do the readings before each session in order to facilitate more informed participation. -Lectures -Practical sessions -Tutorials -Team assignments: presentation, debates, etc. -Individual assignments
Assessment System
  • % end-of-term-examination 40
  • % of continuous assessment (assigments, laboratory, practicals...) 60

Basic Bibliography
  • Augusto Lopez-Claros, Arthur L. Dahl, and Maja Groff. Global Governance and the Emergence of Global Institutions for the 21st Century. Cambridge University Press. 2020
  • Augusto Lopez-Claros, Arthur L. Dahl, and Maja Groff. Global Governance and the Emergence of Global Institutions for the 21st Century. Cambridge . 2020
  • Barnett, M. and R. Duvall. Power In Global Governance. Cambridge University Press. . 2010
  • Colander, C., Kupers, R.. Complexity and the Art of Public Policy: Solving Society's Problems from the Bottom Up. . Princeton University Press. 2014
  • McNeill, J.R. . Something New Under the Sun: An Environmental History of the Twentieth-Century World. . WW Norton & Company. . 2001
  • Ruddiman, W. F.. Plows, Plagues, and Petroleum: How Humans Took Control of Climate. Princeton University Press. 2010
  • Seo, S. Niggol. . The behavioral economics of climate change: adaptation behaviors, global public goods, breakthrough technologies, and policy-making. . Academic Press. 2017.
  • Smill,V.. Harvesting the Biosphere: What We Have Taken from Nature. MIT Press. 2012
  • You have accessAccess Open access Cited by 7 Augusto Lopez-Claros, Arthur L. Dahl, and Maja Groff. Global Governance and the Emergence of Global Institutions for the 21st Century. Cambridge University Press. 2020
  • You have accessAccess Open access Cited by 7 Augusto Lopez-Claros, Arthur L. Dahl, and Maja Groff. Global Governance and the Emergence of Global Institutions for the 21st Century. Cambridge University Press. 2020
Recursos electrónicosElectronic Resources *
Additional Bibliography
  • A. Kander, P. Malanima, & P. Warde. Power to the People: Energy in Europe Over the Last Five Centuries. Princeton University Press. 2013
  • Akerlof, G. A., & Kranton, R. E.. Identity economics . Princeton University Press. 2010
  • Austin, G. (ed). Economic development and environmental history in the Anthropocene: perspectives on Asia and Africa. Bloomsbury. 2017
  • Carson, R.. Silent Spring. . Houghton Mifflin.. 2002
  • Crosby, A. W.. Ecological Imperialism: The Biological Expansion of Europe, 900-1900. . Cambridge University Press. 2004
  • Diamond, J... Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed. . Penguin. 2011
  • J. R. McNeill & K. Pomeranz (Eds.), . The Cambridge World History. Volume VII, Part 1. . _Cambridge University Press. 2015
  • Nordhaus, W. D.. . The Spirit of Green.. Princeton University Press.. 2021
  • O'Neill, J.. . Ecology, policy and politics: Human well-being and the natural world. . Routledge. 2002
  • Ross, M. L.. . The Oil Curse: How Petroleum Wealth Shapes the Development of Nations. . Princeton University Press. . 2012
  • Wrigley, E. A... Energy and the English Industrial Revolution. . _Cambridge University Press. . 2010
(*) Access to some electronic resources may be restricted to members of the university community and require validation through Campus Global. If you try to connect from outside of the University you will need to set up a VPN

The course syllabus may change due academic events or other reasons.