Sustainable Urban Environments

Sustainable Urban Environments

Sustainable Urban Environments

Course type: Free, Self-paced, Online
Offered by: Trinity College
Region: International
Website: edx.org

How can we strengthen sustainability? By empowering individuals and communities to transform and balance dynamic natural resources, economic prosperity, and healthy populations.

In this course, you’ll explore productive and disruptive social, ecological, and economic intersections – the “triple bottom line.” You’ll investigate a spectrum of global, national, regional, municipal and personal relationships that are increasing resiliency. Most importantly, you’ll learn how to effectively locate your interests, and to leverage optimistic change within emerging 21st century urban environments.

 

What you’ll learn

  • Systems of thinking that can leverage change
  • How water is key to sustainability
  • Ways to trace sources of materials and knowledge
  • Identification of strategic urban infrastructure systems
  • How to strengthen sustainability, wherever you are

Week #1: Basic Concepts
This week will offer an introduction to basic concepts of urban sustainability and key course points. Various sustainability rating systems will be reviewed, with respect to the capacity of metrics to leverage environmental change and indicate quality-of-life benefits.

Week #2: Governance and Science
This week focuses on scientific and legal efforts to expand urban sustainability, as well as their impacts on human health, social and environmental justice, and both the management and stewardship of natural resources.

Week #3: Urban Planning for Everyday Routines
This week will emphasize the everyday world of urban sustainability, including tracing municipal services, urban parks and planning, as well as efforts to make cities more walkable. We will also explore links between sustainability and human happiness.

Week #4: Urgency and the Global Economy
We will look at the big picture to examine big corporations, development projects, and systems that can leverage climate change mitigation and adaptation, fair trade, food security, green finance – all at a planetary scale. The UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) will be reviewed along with international conservation and rapid urban development. We will analyze how our smart phones and computers are source of global information, and a physical trace of global resources and manufacturing.

Week #5: Adaptation and Individual Mitigation
This week, we will explore individual people’s strategies and capacities for addressing urban sustainability through consumption patterns, eating habits, health choices, energy usage, bicycling, recycling, and the new sharing economy.

Week #6:
The final week will focus on summarizing the course and completing all projects.

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UC Irvine’s Introductory Course in Environmental Psychology

UC Irvine’s Introductory Course in Environmental Psychology

Introductory course in environmental psychology

Affiliation: University of California, Irvine
Lecturer: Professor Dan Stokols
Certificate: 
No
Assignments: No
Fee: No
Platform: Itunes U (Windows user can access through Itunes)
Link:  Environmental Psychology – PPD151 / PSYBEH171S / PUBHLTH151 

How are people affected by overcrowding, traffic congestion, and noise? Why do people litter or vandalize their environments? How do buildings affect their occupants? Does the architectural design of apartment buildings influence patterns of neighbouring and friendship formation? Why do people consume scarce environmental resources? Can residential, work, and neighbourhood settings be designed to reduce stress, increase productivity, and promote physical activity? These are some of the questions that have concerned environmental psychologists.
Environmental psychology is the study of human behaviour and well-being in relation to the large-scale, sociophysical environment. The term, large-scale environment, refers to places such as homes, offices, neighbourhoods, and whole communities. These places can be described in terms of several physical and social dimensions, including their geographical location, architectural design, membership and social organization. The term, sociophysical environment, reflects the assumption that the physical and social dimensions of places are closely intertwined. The architectural design of a housing complex, for example, can exert a subtle but substantial impact on the friendship patterns that develop among residents. This course emphasizes the interdependence between physical and social aspects of places, rather than viewing these dimensions as separate and isolated.
This course is offered by the School of Social Ecology and cross-listed with the Program in Public Health.
  1. Introduction to environmental psychology and course overview.
  2. Applying principles of environmental psychology to the analysis and resolution of community problems.
  3. Historical origins and Major assumptions of ecological paradigm.
  4. Principles of system theory, physiological and psychological stress
  5. Environment cognition
  6. Environment and personality
  7. Environment and Evaluation
  8. Human Spatial Behaviour
  9. Promoting Environmentally Protective behaviour
  10. Responding to the environment
  11. The influence of environmental design on social interaction
  12. Applying environmental psychology principles to Urban Design
  13. Design guidelines for home, offices, classroom and hospitals.
  14. Design guidelines for residential neighbourhoods and planned communities.
  15. Natural environment and restorative settings.
  16. Virtual environment – The environment psychology of the internet
  17. Social structural approach to the environmental change
  18. Evaluating environmental intervention.

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