background preloader

Introduction to Sustainability

Introduction to Sustainability
About the Course This course introduces the academic approach of Sustainability and explores how today’s human societies can endure in the face of global change, ecosystem degradation and resource limitations. The course focuses on key knowledge areas of sustainability theory and practice, including population, ecosystems, global change, energy, agriculture, water, environmental economics and policy, ethics, and cultural history. This subject is of vital importance, seeking as it does to uncover the principles of the long-term welfare of all the peoples of the planet. Course Syllabus Week 1: Introduction. Neo-malthusians, J-curves, S-curves and the IPAT equationWeek 2: Population. Course Format Each week of class consists of multiple 8-15 minute long lecture videos, integrated weekly quizzes, readings, an optional discussion assignment. Related:  Sustainable Transport Infrastructure

gamification About the Course Gamification is the application of digital game design techniques to non-game contexts, such as business, education, and social impact challenges. Video games are the dominant entertainment form of modern times because they powerfully motivate behavior. Game mechanics can be applied outside the immersive environments of games themselves, to create engaging experiences as well as assign rewards and recognition. Over the past few years, gamification adoption has skyrocketed. Game thinking means more than dropping in badges and leaderboards to make an activity fun or addicting. Subtitles forall video lectures available in: English, Russian (provided by Digital October), Turkish (Koc University), and Ukrainian (provided by Bionic University) Course Syllabus The course is divided into 12 units. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. Recommended Background This course is designed as an introduction to gamification as a business practice. Suggested Readings Course Format Yes.

World Highways - Roads for the future Speakers at the 3rd European Road Congress looked at ways of preparing infrastructure to cater for future demands. Patrick Smith reports Road accidents in Europe can be reduced substantially, but vehicles will have to make more use of technology, and they will cost more. The problems will not be made any easier with the knowledge that road transport is set to double between 2040 and 2050. These were just some of the forecasts made at the 3rd European Road Congress, held in Brussels, Belgium, a key road sector event, which attracted more than 100 participants. Delegates reaffirmed that only placing road infrastructure at the top of the agenda would result in the sector matching the tough expectations placed on it by society. In the future, roads will have to be more resistant, more 'intelligent', cheaper to build and to maintain and ever safer for their users, as "has always stressed throughout the years by ERF-IRF BPC." "It is not just a dream. Flanders in Action Sustainable transport

Model Thinking This course will consist of twenty sections. As the course proceeds, I will fill in the descriptions of the topics and put in readings. Section 1: Introduction: Why Model? In these lectures, I describe some of the reasons why a person would want to take a modeling course. To be an intelligent citizen of the worldTo be a clearer thinkerTo understand and use dataTo better decide, strategize, and design There are two readings for this section. The Model Thinker: Prologue, Introduction and Chapter 1 Why Model? Section 2: Sorting and Peer Effects We now jump directly into some models. In this second section, I show a computational version of Schelling's Segregation Model using NetLogo. NetLogo The Schelling Model that I use can be found by clicking on the "File" tab, then going to "Models Library". The readings for this section include some brief notes on Schelling's model and then the academic papers of Granovetter and Miller and Page. Notes on Schelling Granovetter Model Miller and Page Model

Tips and Tricks for Teachers Tips and Tricks for Teachers By Laura Faye Tenenbaum, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory This three-page, interactive PDF file gives step-by-step instructions for six ways to use NASA’s Global Climate Change Website in your classroom. The following National Science Education Content Standards are applicable to all activities: Unifying Concepts and Processes: K-12, Change, Constancy and Measurement; Evidence, Models and Explanation A - Science as Inquiry: K-12, Understandings about Scientific Inquiry D - Earth and Space Science: K-4, Changes in Earth; 5-8, Earth’s History; 9-12, Energy in the Earth System E - Science and Technology: K-12 Understanding about Science and Technology F- Science in Personal/Social Perspective: K-4, Changes in Environments; 5-8, Environments, Sci/Tech in Society; 9-12 Environmental Quality, Natural and Human Induced Hazards, Sci/Tech in global Challenges

Organizational Analysis About the Course Best MBA Mooc in 2013 as per review in the Financial Times! "The best [MBA Mooc] was Organizational Analysis taught by Stanford's Dan McFarland" - Philip D. Broughton MBA It is hard to imagine living in modern society without participating in or interacting with organizations. Each case is full of details and complexity. Through this self-paced course you will come to see that there is nothing more practical than a good theory. Join your future classmates and course alumni on Facebook! Course Syllabus Module 1: Introduction Module 2: Decisions by rational and rule-based procedures Module 3: Decisions by dominant coalitions Module 4: Decisions in organized anarchies Module 5: Developing organizational learning and intelligence Module 6: Developing an organizational culture Module 7: Managing resource dependencies Module 8: Network forms of organization Module 9: Institutions and organizational legitimacy Module 10: Summary Suggested Readings Course Format

Sustainable Transportation Source: adapted from UK Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, 1999. The concept of sustainable transportation is intricately linked with the development of sustainable transport modes, infrastructures and logistics. Three major dimensions are considered for such a purpose: Environment. A reduction of the environmental impacts of transportation is a likely strategy for sustainability. Transportation significantly contributes to harmful emissions, noise and to climate changes. The matter is often that reconciling all these principles, which individually appear logical and straightforward, lead to transportation systems that are unsustainable because they are too costly and regulated.

social network analysis About the Course Everything is connected: people, information, events and places, all the more so with the advent of online social media. A practical way of making sense of the tangle of connections is to analyze them as networks. Course Syllabus Week 1: What are networks and what use is it to study them? Concepts: nodes, edges, adjacency matrix, one and two-mode networks, node degree Activity: Upload a social network (e.g. your Facebook social network into Gephi and visualize it ). Week 2: Random network models: Erdos-Renyi and Barabasi-Albert Concepts: connected components, giant component, average shortest path, diameter, breadth-first search, preferential attachment Activities: Create random networks, calculate component distribution, average shortest path, evaluate impact of structure on ability of information to diffuse Week 3: Network centrality Concepts: betweenness, closeness, eigenvector centrality (+ PageRank), network centralization Week 4: Community Recommended Background

Impact Estimator | Life Cycle Assessment Software In North America, the ATHENA Impact Estimator for Buildings is the only software tool that is designed to evaluate whole buildings and assemblies based on internationally recognized life cycle assessment (LCA) methodology. Using the Impact Estimator, architects, engineers and others can easily assess and compare the environmental implications of industrial, institutional, commercial and residential designs — both for new buildings and major renovations. Where relevant, the software also distinguishes between owner-occupied and rental facilities. The Impact Estimator puts the environment on equal footing with other more traditional design criteria at the conceptual stage of a project. It is capable of modeling 95% of the building stock in North America, using the best available data. The Estimator takes into account the environmental impacts of: Complex Results in a User-friendly Format Although LCA is a complex process, the Estimator has been designed for ease of use. Simplified Tracking

Design: Creation of Artifacts in Society About the Course This is a course aimed at making you a better designer. The course marries theory and practice, as both are valuable in improving design performance. Lectures and readings will lay out the fundamental concepts that underpin design as a human activity. Weekly design challenges test your ability to apply those ideas to solve real problems. The course is deliberately broad - spanning all domains of design, including architecture, graphics, services, apparel, engineered goods, and products. Student Testimonials from Earlier Sessions of the Course:"An amazing course - a joy to take. "When I signed up for this course I didn't know what to expect; the experience was so good and rewarding. See examples of student projects: here Recommended Background No specific background is required. Suggested Readings To get a feel for the style of the instructor and the material in the course, this book is a good place to start: Ulrich, K.T. 2010. Product Design and Development by Karl T.

Home - EMAS - EUROPA Interest in the environmental performance of organisations is continually increasing. Taking a proactive approach to environmental challenges is now the hallmark of successful organisations. The EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) is a management instrument developed by the European Commission for companies and other organisations to evaluate, report, and improve their environmental performance. Currently, more than 4,500 organisations and approximately 8,150 sites are EMAS registered worldwide. What's new? last updated 29 January 2015 EMAS as a tool for International Business more EMAS becomes a reality in Serbia more

Data Analysis About the Course You have probably heard that this is the era of “Big Data”. Stories about companies or scientists using data to recommend movies, discover who is pregnant based on credit card receipts, or confirm the existence of the Higgs Boson regularly appear in Forbes, the Economist, the Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times. This course is an applied statistics course focusing on data analysis. Recommended Background Some familiarity with the R statistical programming language ( and proficiency in writing in English will be useful. Course Format The course will consist of lecture videos broken into 8-10 minute segments.

Unlocking India's Green Potential. Go Green , Grow Clean. India's No.1 Green Website. Large-scale climate patterns influenced temperature and weather patterns around the globe in 2011. Due to moderate-to-strong La Niña at the beginning of the year, there were historical droughts in East Africa, the southern United States, and northern Mexico, as well the wettest two-year period (2010–11) on record for Australia. Heavy rain in Rio de Janeiro in January triggered the country’s worst floods and landslides in Brazil’s history. The 2011 combined average temperature across global land and ocean surfaces was the coolest since 2008, but was also among the 15 warmest years on record and above the 1981–2010 average. Atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations increased by 2.10 ppm in 2011, and exceeded 390 ppm for the first time since instrumental records began. Other greenhouse gases also continued to rise in concentration and the combined effect now represents a 30% increase in radiative forcing over a 1990 baseline. The list of climate imbalances continues to grow.

Critical Thinking in Global Challenges About the Course Critical thinking is the ability to gather and assess information and evidence in a balanced and reflective way to reach conclusions that are justified by reasoned argument based on the available evidence. Critical thinking is a key skill in the information age, valuable in all disciplines and professions. This introductory course will give you the opportunity to better understand what critical thinking is, and to practice and enhance your critical thinking skills. The relevant background information for each global challenge will be provided to ensure that you can complete the exercises. Subtitles for all video lectures available: Portuguese (provided by the Lemann Foundation), English Course Format The course contains lectures, quizzes and exercises. This is a basic, informal and very pragmatic course, which focuses on getting you to think rationally and critically about evidence, and does not attempt to teach you about logic, reasoning and knowledge in a formal way.

Related: