701-1651-00L  Environmental Governance

SemesterAutumn Semester 2023
LecturersE. Lieberherr
Periodicityyearly recurring course
Language of instructionEnglish


701-1651-00 GEnvironmental Governance3 hrs
Tue10:15-13:00CHN E 46 »
11:15-12:00CHN D 46 »
31.10.10:15-13:00CHN D 42 »
19.12.10:15-13:00CHN D 42 »
E. Lieberherr

Catalogue data

AbstractThe course addresses environmental policies, focusing on new steering approaches, which are generally summarized as environmental governance. The course also provides students with tools to analyze environmental policy processes and assesses the key features of environmental governance by examining various practical environmental policy examples.
ObjectiveTo understand how an environmental problem may (not) become a policy and explain political processes, using basic concepts and techniques from political science.

To analyze the evolution as well as the key elements of environmental governance.

To be able to identify the main challenges and opportunities for environmental governance and to critically discuss them with reference to various practical policy examples.
ContentImprovements in environmental quality and sustainable management of natural resources cannot be achieved through technical solutions alone. The quality of the environment and the achievement of sustainable development strongly depend on human behavior and specifically the human uses of nature. To influence human behavior, we rely on public policies and other societal rules, which aim to steer the way humans use natural resources and their effects on the environment. Such steering can take place through government intervention alone. However, this often also involves governance, which includes the interplay between governmental and non-governmental actors, the use of diverse tools such as emission standards or financial incentives to steer actors' behavior and can occur at the local, regional, national or international level.

In this course, we will address both the practical aspects of as well as the scientific debate on environmental governance. The course gives future environmental experts a strong basis to position themselves in the governance debate, which does not preclude government but rather involves a spectrum from government to governance.

Key questions that this course seeks to answer: What are the core characteristics of environmental challenges from a policy perspective? What are key elements of 'environmental governance' and how legitimate and effective are these approaches in addressing persistent environmental challenges?

Furthermore, we encourage the development of soft skills by engaging students in activities such as moderating discussions in class, presenting own proposals, giving regular peer feedback, as well as critically reflecting on various relevant publications in the environmental governance domain.
Lecture notesLecture slides, a script and additional course material will be provided on Moodle.
Prerequisites / NoticeA detailed course schedule will be made available at the beginning of the semester.
During the lecture we will work with Moodle. We ask that all students register themselves on this platform before the lecture.

We recommend that students have (a) three-years BSc education of a (technical) university; (b) successfully completed Bachelor introductory course to environmental policy (Entwicklungen nationaler Umweltpolitik (or equivalent)) and (c) familiarity with key issues in environmental policy and some fundamental knowledge of one social science or humanities discipline (political science, economics, sociology, history, psychology, philosophy)
Subject-specific CompetenciesConcepts and Theoriesassessed
Method-specific CompetenciesAnalytical Competenciesassessed
Project Managementassessed
Social CompetenciesCommunicationassessed
Cooperation and Teamworkassessed
Self-presentation and Social Influence assessed
Sensitivity to Diversityassessed
Personal CompetenciesAdaptability and Flexibilityassessed
Creative Thinkingfostered
Critical Thinkingassessed
Integrity and Work Ethicsassessed
Self-awareness and Self-reflection assessed
Self-direction and Self-management assessed

Performance assessment

Performance assessment information (valid until the course unit is held again)
Performance assessment as a semester course
ECTS credits6 credits
ExaminersE. Lieberherr
Typeungraded semester performance
Language of examinationEnglish
RepetitionRepetition possible without re-enrolling for the course unit.

Learning materials

No public learning materials available.
Only public learning materials are listed.


No information on groups available.


Places35 at the most
PriorityRegistration for the course unit is until 18.09.2023 only possible for the primary target group
Primary target groupEnvironmental Sciences MSc (736000)
Agricultural Sciences MSc (762000)
Waiting listuntil 25.09.2023

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