Can transitions to more just and sustainable urban energy regimes be purposefully steered? What lowcarbon alternatives exist and what role can local communities play in normalizing them? This course offers an introduction to renewable energy systems and uses transition theories to investigate and learn from past and ongoing socio-technical innovations. Students will become familiar with transition management frameworks and use them to explore transition cases in the domains of solar, wind, biomass, geothermal, biofuels, and hydropower energy systems, among others. The role of everyday social practices and consumption will also be critically examined through transition cases in urban transportation, housing, and food procurement infrastructures and institutions.

Urban Energy Transitions Course Flyer



This course provides an array of perspectives from which sustainability issues are viewed, including ecopsychology, environmental history, deep ecology, ecofeminism, environmental justice, bioregionalism, Green political movements, ecological identity, and consumer-behavior studies. The course will introduce specific competencies for sustainability practice, including negotiation, conflict resolution, decision making, communication, interprofessional collaboration for systemic change, and reflective practice.The goal is to inform professional practice by broadening students views on relevant issues through multiple lenses, while also focusing problem-solving, seeking to balance knowledge generalization and specialization. Requirement for the MS, Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management and Advanced Certificate in Sustainability Strategies.

Sustainability Perspectives & Practice Course Flyer



This course introduces students to frame-works for examining climate change impacts in urban settings, and communities’ mitigation/adaptation strategies and engagement initiatives. Students explore how concepts of sustainable cities and urban resilience inform policy at the municipal level, issues associated with complex systems, and the influence of and prospects for citizen engagement with climate impacts. Student teams study cases of community initiatives and city-level policy applications and apply analytical frameworks to selected urban settings/systems. Ethical issues surrounding differential contributions to climate change, and impacts of climate change, are examined. Additionally, the course provides students the opportunity to participate in research and community engagement connected to the Leveraging “We Are Still In” initiative, an emerging national network of interdisciplinary higher education/community partner-ships addressing climate change launched in Fall 2017. (The “We Are Still In” declaration is the response of thousands of mayors, along with governors, CEOs, and higher education presidents to the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accords.)

Climate Change & Communities Course Flyer