Availabilities:

Location Domestic International
Lismore Session 1 Session 1
Online Session 1 N/A

Unit Summary

Unit type

UG Coursework Unit

Credit points

12

AQF level

7

Level of learning

Intermediate

Pre-requisites

96 credit points in any SCU unit

Unit aim

Explores the nature of economics as relevant to sustainable development. This involves learning from the trappings of historical economic paradigms and engaging with economic instruments/methods as a way of managing and preventing environmental degradation. This unit engages with topical issues such as population, climate change and water scarcity to apply economic rationale to your understanding of these issues using interactive tutorial workshops as a learning tool.

Unit content

  • Introduction to economics: what is it and why it matters for sustainable development
  • Broadening our economic perspective: exploring the evolution of ecological economics 
  • Market systems, supply, demand and the implications of market failure
  • Ecosystem goods and services
  • Valuing the environment: an overview of the techniques and theories
  • Environmental accounting
  • Changing behaviour: using economic instruments in environmental management
  • Economic growth and human development: meeting the sustainable development goals
  • Natural resources: trade-offs, ethics and property rights
  • The economics of water resources management

Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

GA1: , GA2: , GA3: , GA4: , GA5: , GA6: , GA7:
On completion of this unit, students should be able to: GA1 GA2 GA3 GA4 GA5 GA6 GA7
1 demonstrate understanding of the nature of the economic problem of scarcity and the implications this will have for resource allocation
2 analyse the relationship between economic activity and the natural environment and the implications for sustainable development
3 critically appreciate the difference between environmental economics and ecological economics, and the implications of this difference
4 demonstrate presentation and discussion skills as relevant to environmental consulting and research
5 demonstrate understanding of a range of natural resource issues of topical relevance.

On completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. demonstrate understanding of the nature of the economic problem of scarcity and the implications this will have for resource allocation
    • GA1:
    • GA4:
  2. analyse the relationship between economic activity and the natural environment and the implications for sustainable development
    • GA3:
    • GA4:
  3. critically appreciate the difference between environmental economics and ecological economics, and the implications of this difference
    • GA1:
    • GA3:
  4. demonstrate presentation and discussion skills as relevant to environmental consulting and research
    • GA1:
    • GA3:
    • GA4:
  5. demonstrate understanding of a range of natural resource issues of topical relevance.
    • GA1:
    • GA3:
    • GA4:

Prescribed texts

  • Asafu-Adjaye, J, 2005, Environmental Economics for Non-Economists. ISBN: 981-256-123-4.
Prescribed texts may change in future teaching periods.