Sustainability related MOOCs starting September and beyond (part 2)

MOOC Sustainability SeptemberSeptember has arrived, which means the start to a new school year for many students around the world. It also means the start of a range of new MOOCs (Massive Online Open Courses) available for free online, presented by Universities across the world. These courses are open to anyone with an interest in the topic, last between three and fourteen weeks, and take from three to eight hours of time a week to complete. Many also provide a certificate upon completion.

Here is a selection of fifteen MOOCs (seven in part 1 of the blog, and eight in part 2) starting in the upcoming weeks, and covering a range of topics from social entrepreneurship, to ethical decision making, greening the economy, and sustainability more broadly. To see the first part of this post click here.

8. Introduction to Environmental Law and Policy, organised by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, explores the existing legal regimes governing pollution, water law, endangered species, toxic substances, environmental impact analyses and environmental risk. The course starts on the 8th of September and goes for 6 weeks.

9. Designing Cities is a 10-week course organised by the University of Pennsylvania, starting on the 14th of September. The course explores visionary and practical concepts of city design and planning, past and present, and how design can address such looming challenges as urban population growth, climate change and rising sea levels. Students will also be encouraged to make proposals for city design and development, starting with their own immediate environment.

10. Innovation: The Key to Business Sustainability is a 3-week course given by the University of Leeds starting on the 15th of September. The course will look at how individuals and organisations with a willingness to embrace change (to wonder ‘what if’), can challenge the status quo and work together to turn ideas into reality for the benefit of the business and, in many cases, the wider society, and the way we live

11. Delft University has a number of courses starting in September including Introduction to Water and Climate, Next Generation Infrastructures, Technology for Biobased Products, and Solving Complex Problems. Their course on Responsible Innovation will address the societal implications of new technologies and show how one can incorporate ethical considerations into technical innovations. The course starts in November and lasts 8 weeks.

12. Lund University is organising a course called Greening the Economy: Lessons from Scandinavia, starting in January 2015. The course will explore greening the economy on four levels—individual, business, city, and nation. It will look at the relationships between these levels and give practical examples of the complexities and solutions across levels, using Scandinavia as a unique starting point.

13. Generating the Wealth of Nations, organised by the University of Melbourne, gives a survey of the history of economic development in the world over the past 300 years through this 7-week course. In addition to dealing with what has happened, the course will emphasise what is known about why and which lessons from historical experience can provide understanding of how some countries today are so rich yet others remain so poor.

14. Ideas of the Twentieth Century explores how philosophy, science, art, literature, and history have shaped the last century and the world today, and how our understanding of the physical world is constantly being overthrown and reconstructed by thinkers and leaders of today. The course, organised by the University of Texas Austin, started on August 27th and will last 15 weeks.

15. Last but not least, University of California, Berkeley is putting on a course called The Science of Happiness starting September 9th and lasting 10 weeks. The course will teach the science of positive psychology, which explores the roots of a happy and meaningful life. Lessons will come from research in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, evolutionary biology, and beyond. You can audit the course or pursue a Verified Certification of Achievement for a fee.


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