UCL Department of Geography
GEOGG043 Politics of Climate Change
  
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GEOGG043 Politics of Climate Change

OPTION: GEOGG043 - POLITICS OF CLIMATE CHANGE
(15 credits)

Term 2 (2012)

Staff:
Sam Randalls

Aims:

·    To explore the ways in which different people frame climate change as an issue
·    To examine the science and politics of these debates
·    To critically assess proposed solutions to climate change

Content:

The course focuses upon the different ways in which climate change is framed as an issue. With political rows about climate policy and justice, regular interventions from activist scientists and skeptics, and the various analyses by economists and environmentalists, climate change encompasses far more issues than carbon dioxide science and policy. Each week of the course is devoted to a different approach to climate change, exploring economic, ethical, political, security and scientific framings amongst others. The focus is on the central arguments within each of these discourses. How climate change is considered a problem has significant repercussions for the types of solutions envisaged. Students will conduct research projects on proposed or existing responses to climate change (where responses are defined broadly to include mitigation, adaptation and scientific or political solutions). A critical assessment of the researched response, drawing upon social science debates, forms the assessment for the course.

Assessment:

1 x 3,000 word essay - 100%

Format:

The course is taught through a series of lectures and discussions.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course students should be able to:
·    Appreciate the diversity of debates and perspectives on climate change
·    Critically assess the science and politics of climate change
·    Apply this understanding to a practical example
·    Engage in group discussions about and individual evaluation of social science literatures on climate change

Roberts, J.T. and Parks, B.C. 2007. A Climate of Injustice: Global Inequality, North-South Politics, and Climate Policy, MIT Press, Cambridge, 404pp.

Vanderheiden, S. 2008. Atmospheric Justice: A Political Theory of Climate Change, Oxford University Press, New York.

 

 

Preliminary readings

Demeritt, D. 2001. The Construction of Global Warming and the Politics of Science, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 91, 2, 307-337.

Giddens, A. 2009. The Politics of Climate Change Polity Press, Cambridge.

Hulme, M. 2009. Why we disagree about climate change, Cambridge University Press, 392pp

Malone, E. 2009. Debating Climate Change: Pathways through argument to agreement, Earthscan, London.

Maslin, M. 2009. Global Warming: A very short introduction, (2nd edition), Oxford University Press, 192pp.

Roberts, J.T. and Parks, B.C. 2007. A Climate of Injustice: Global Inequality, North-South Politics, and Climate Policy, MIT Press, Cambridge, 404pp.

Vanderheiden, S. 2008. Atmospheric Justice: A Political Theory of Climate Change, Oxford University Press, New York.