Environmental Justice

Through this module, students will explore the intersections of environmental issues and social justice, conceptual territory often termed environmental justice or environmental inequality.

They will be introduced to various notions of social justice, including distributional theories, procedural theories and those concerning "recognition".

These theories will be applied to understand various cases studies from the UK and form other parts of the world, in order to understand and analyse how various environmental issues such as pollution and climate change have different impacts on different sectors of the population.

We will also consider how and why different people might experience the environment differently, and how their ability to derive benefits might not be equal.

As well as analysing problems, students will consider policy perspectives: both how best to avoid engendering injustice in environmental policy making, and what kinds of policies might be needed to address existing inequalities.

Substantive topics considered in the course of the module might include:

  • The distribution of air pollution and its effects
  • Vulnerability to natural hazards
  • Inclusive environmental design
  • Fuel poverty

The module will complement other areas of study in the environmental, social and planning pathways of the geography undergraduate programme.

It will develop key skills in critical conceptual thinking, problem solving and policy analysis and should be highly relevant to students considering careers in environmental, social and energy policy; planning and urban design; natural resource management; and social work as well as those more generally needing strong analytical and independent thinking skills for graduate level employment.

By the end of this module you will be able to:

  • Application of theory to real world situations
  • Equality analysis skills
  • Critical policy analysis
  • Discussion and debate
  • Discussion chairing
  • General analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Empathy and ability to understand others' positions