Skip to Content

Globalization, Environment, and Policy

Concentration Requirements: students must complete 48 credits with a minimum of 24 upper division credits within the major.

Preliminary Core:
Must take GEOG 141, GEOG 142, and PS 297 (SP18)

Methods requirement:
Complete one of the following courses: Geog 391 (W18), PS 102 (SP18), or Soc 311 (pre-reqs are Soc 204 or Soc 207) (Offered every term)

Breadth requirements: 2 courses (consider as pre-reqs for the specialization courses)
ANTH 161
EC 201
ENVS 201
INTL 240, 250, 260, 280
HIST 273
J 201
LAS 212
LING 211, 295
PPPM 201, 202
PS 203, 204, 205

Specialization Requirements: Must take 6 of the following courses:
ANTH 310**, 311, 329, 411
EC 333*
ENVS 335*, 411, 420, 429, 435, 450
GEOG 321, 322, 323, 341, 342, 410 **, 425, 430, 432, 441, 448, 461, 463, 467, 475 (ASIA 480)
GEOL 310
HIST 415**, 473
INTL 323, 345, 360, 370, 421, 423, 431, 433, 442, 444, 445, 446, 447
J 320, 350, 396, 467
LA 410**
PHIL 340
PPPM 407**, 408**, 331
PS 320, 330, 337, 367, 380, 471, 477
SOC 303, 304, 416
WGS 351

*ENVS 335 and EC 333 cover much of the same material.  Students are encouraged not to take both.
**Topic course is subject to title change; only specific title is approved.

Note prerequisites for the following specialization courses

EC 333 EC 201
ENVS 420 ENVS 201
ENVS 432 ENVS 201
ENVS 450 ENVS 201
INTL 421 INTL 240
PS 477 PS205 or ENVS 201
J396 J201
J467 J201

Course Descriptions for Globalization, Environment, and Policy

(notation if group satisfying: Arts & Letters (AL) Social Science (SSC), Science (SC), Multicultural (IP, AC, or IC). 

Preliminary Core: Must take GEOG 141, GEOG 142, and PS 297.

GEOG 141 The Natural Environment (SC) The earth’s physical landscapes, vegetation patterns, weather, and climate; emphasis on the dynamic interactions among climate, landforms, vegetation, and soils.

GEOG 142 Human Geography (SSC, IC) Ways in which various cultures live and use their environments. Discussion of the changing distributions of major cultural elements.

PS 297 Introduction to Environmental Politics United States environmental policy and alternative environmental political futures.

Back to Top of Page

Methods Requirement: Complete one of the following courses: Geog 391, PS 102, or Soc 311 (pre-reqs are Soc 204 or Soc 207)

GEOG 391 Social Science Inquiry and Research How social scientists approach knowledge creation, and the research design process, including developing research questions and selecting methods. Students will further develop an understanding of ethical considerations in social scientific research, as well as how to determine the quality of research design and study findings. This course will primarily draw upon theoretical content from geography.

PS 102 Thinking Like a Social Scientist This course introduces students to different modes of thinking in everyday life, and shows how “thinking like a social scientist” can sharpen our thinking for a variety of contexts. It will prepare students for further study in any social science or history (including anthropology, economics, geography, history, political science, sociology) and will make clear why studying these social sciences is useful for many different careers.

Soc 311 Introduction to Social Research (4) The development of social research; the nature of scientific inquiry and basic methods and techniques; examination of representative sociological studies from the standpoint of methodology. Prereq: SOC 204 or 207.

Back to Top of Page

Breadth Requirement: 2 courses (you may want to use these as pre-reqs for the specialization courses)

ANTH 161 World Cultures (SSC, IC) A first look into the work of cultural anthropology and an introduction to the cultural diversity of the world.

EC 201 Introduction to Economic Analysis: Microeconomics (SSC) Examines how consumers, firms, and governments make decisions when facing scarce resources and how those decisions affect market outcomes, such as prices and output. MATH 111 recommended.

ENVS 201 Introduction to Environmental Studies: Social Sciences (SSC) Contributions of the social sciences to the analysis of environmental problems. Topics include human population, the relationship between social institutions and environmental problems, and appropriate political, policy, and economic processes.

INTL 240 Perspectives on International Development (SSC, IC) Introduction to major ideologies, theories, historical processes, and contemporary challenges in international development.

INTL 250 Value Systems in Cross-Cultural Perspective (SSC, IC) Introduction to value systems of various cultures, focusing on how values relate to religion, forms of social organization, group affiliation, and patterns of conflict resolution.

INTL 260 Culture, Capitalism, and Globalization (SSC, IC) Cultural and historical perspectives on the development of capitalism as a way of life and its relationship to contemporary global issues and imbalances.

INTL 280 Global Environmental Issues (SSC, IC) Examines root causes of “environmental problems” at local, regional, national, and global scales. Critically compares approaches to addressing international environmental challenges.

HIST 273 Introduction to American Environmental History (SSC, AC) Introduction to concepts, concerns, and methods of environmental history, especially in the context of American history to the present.

J 201 Media and Society (SSC) Introduction to the critical examination of the roles of media in society.

LAS 212 Latin American Social Sciences: [Topic] (4R) (IC) Addresses various issues related to the historical, political, cultural, and economic development of Latin America from a social science perspective. Prereq: LAS 200. R once for a maximum of 8 credits when topic changes.

LING 211 Languages of the World (SSC, IC) Survey of the variability and distribution of the languages of the world in terms of linguistic typology, genetic relationships, and geographic location. DeLancey.

LING 295 Language, Culture, and Society (SSC, IC) Ways in which language reflects culture and in turn determines cultural worldview, interaction between language and social structure, social relations and interpersonal communication.

PPPM 201 Introduction to Planning, Public Policy and Management (SSC) Overview of professional public service and the planning and management of public issues. Focuses on the goals of public services within their economic, social and political contexts.

PPPM 202 Healthy Communities (SSC) Historical relationships of public policy, planning and public health; how public policies can promote health; relationship of planning and policies to inequalities in health outcomes.

PS 203 State and Local Government (SSC) Linkage between elites and masses with attention to values, beliefs, participation, and process. Topics include mass participation, state and community elites, violence, public policy.

PS 204 Introduction to Comparative Politics (SSC) Major concepts and approaches in the study of comparative government and politics.

PS 205 Introduction to International Relations (SSC) Introduction to theoretical and methodological tools for the analysis of world politics.

Back to Top of Page

Specialization Requirements: must take 6 of the following courses; no more than 3 from one department.

ANTH 310 Global Mental Health (4)- The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that the incidence of depression is rapidly on the rise, particularly in low and middle-income countries. Other studies by the WHO show that recovery rates from schizophrenia are much better in low-income countries compared with those observed in the United States. This course grapples with quandaries such as these to explore the theory, practice, and methods employed in the study of global mental health. To investigate this interdisciplinary landscape, this course draws heavily on postcolonial studies and empirical ethnographic inquiry to consider the effects of globalization, and how social, economic, and political inequality shape the experience of mental health across global populations. We will explore topics such as refugee mental health, global pharmaceutical trade, and the relationship between biomedical categories and local idioms of distress. Integral to our exploration will be an interrogation of the term “global”; we consider why some voices are heard above others and how the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness may reveal insidious power structures and disparities across race, gender, sexuality, and class. This course is highly interdisciplinary and appropriate for students in anthropology, international studies, psychology, as well as ethnic, and area studies.

ANTH 311 Anthropology of Globalization (4) (SSC, IC) Introduces students to a wide range of issues related to economic, cultural, and ideological aspects of globalization. Offered alternate years. Prereq: Anth 161.

ANTH 329 Immigration and Farmworkers’ Political Culture (SSC, IC) Mexican farmworkers in the United States, their history and living and working conditions explored within the political culture of immigration. Introductory social science course recommended.

ANTH 411 Politics, Ethnicity, Nationalism Explores relationship between ethnicity, politics, and nationalism from historical and anthropological perspectives; addresses the way nationalism and ethnic identity construct and reproduce each other. Prereq: junior standing.

EC 333 Resource and Environmental Economic Issues (SSC) Economic analysis of replenishable and nonreplenishable natural resources; environmental issues and policies. Prereq: EC 201.

ENVS 335 Allocating Scarce Environmental Resources Considerations for the design of environmental and natural resources policies and regulations: balancing society’s preferences and the costs of environmental protection and resource conservation. Prereq: MATH 105 or higher. *Note: ENVS 335 and EC 333 cover much of the same material.  Students are encouraged not to take both.

ENVS 411 Environmental Issues Topic Course (Course Title Varies) In-depth examination of a particular environmental topic such as global warming, ecosystem restoration, energy alternatives, geothermal development, public lands management, or environmental literature. Prereq: junior or senior standing.

ENVS 420 Perspectives in Nature and Society Comparative exploration of social science approaches to environmental issues. Focus on interaction of social institutions, culture, politics, and economy with the physical landscape. Prereq: ENVS 201.

ENVS 429 Top: Environmental Leadership (4) Partnering with governmental agencies, nonprofit organization, public schools and local businesses, students develop service learning projects. Repeatable when topic changes.

ENVS 435 Environmental Justice Environmental justice and its impact on current decisions. Focus on civil rights law, perception of risk, and relation of sustainability and equity. Prereq: ENVS 201.

ENVS 450 Political Ecology Examines how social relations and economic, social, and cultural control of natural resources shape human interactions with the environment. Theory and case studies. Prereq: ENVS 201.

GEOG 321 Climatology (SC) Energy and moisture in the atmosphere, atmospheric circulation, controls of regional and microclimates, applied climatology, climatic variations, past and future climates. Special fee. Prereq: GEOG 141.

GEOG 322 Geomorphology (SC) Landforming processes with emphasis on mass movements, rivers, eolian, glacial, and coastal processes. Prereq: GEOG 141 or GEOL 102 or 202.

GEOG 323 Biogeography (SC) Relation of plants and animals to the environment, distribution of individual species, historical changes in plant distribution. Prereq: GEOG 141.

GEOG 341 Population and Environment (SSC, IC) Patterns of population growth over history and place, current policies and programs, and impacts and trends in U.S. and international contexts. Includes method and theory. Prereq: sophomore standing.

GEOG 342 Geography of Globalization (SSC) Historical and geographical dimensions of globalization; emphasizes economic and social factors. Topics include multinationals, trade agreements, sustainability, global inequalities, and racial and gender divisions of labor.

GEOG 410 Topic: Economic Geography (only this title is approved) – Urban and Regional Development is concerned with the structure and function of cities and regions in this increasingly globalizing world. Particularly, this course explores issues relating to economic globalization, urban restructuring, and regional development. Its approach is to bring “global” processes (capital flows, migration, technological transferring, outsourcing, and information communication) down to Earth, to ask where they come from, and to explore their (variable) causes and consequences in cities and regions. The consequences include job opportunity creation and loss, tax money, infrastructure improvement, fiscal bankruptcy, and so on. The course also provides an opportunity to apply, and evaluate, a range of theoretical claims and frameworks derived from recent work in economic geography and urban & regional political economy. The approach of the course, like that of these fields, is to learn with and through case studies. Case studies are selected not simply to acquire “coverage,” or to provide straightforwardly generalizable lessons, but as a means of understanding how processes work, and to explicate and interrogate substantive claims and theoretical positions in the burgeoning literature on globalization, cities, and regions. The course will draw, in particular, on “critical cases” that have shaped understandings of urban transformation and political-economic globalization. They will be drawn, selectively, from around the world, but reference will also be made to American and Asian examples and connections, such as special economic zones in China, Silicon Valley in California, Route 128 in Massachusetts, Hsinchu Science Park in Taiwan, abandoned neighborhoods in Detroit, and so on.

GEOG 425 Hydrology and Water Resources Emphasis on surface water including precipitation, evapotranspiration, surface runoff, and stream flow. Understanding and analysis of processes. Management for water supply and quality. Prereq: GEOG 321 or 322 and MATH 112.

GEOG 430 Long-Term Environmental Change Evolution of the physical landscape during the Quaternary period. Elements of paleoclimatology, paleoecology, and geomorphology. Prereq: GEOG 321, 322, or 323.

GEOG 432 Climatological Aspects of Global Change Role of the climate system in global change, the Earth’s climatic history, and potential future climatic changes. Prereq: GEOG 321, 322, or 323.

GEOG 441 Political Geography (IP) Spatial perspectives on global political patterns and processes. Relationship of political territories to resources, ethnic patterns, and ideological communities. Impact of political arrangements on landscapes. Prereq: junior standing.

GEOG 448 Tourism & Development  Tourism-related concepts and practices associated with tourism planning, development, marketing, and impacts in different geographic contexts. Offered Spring term/once a year.

GEOG 461 Environmental Alteration  Human alterations of the earth’s major ecosystems. Consequences of human activity at different times and places with respect to soils, atmosphere, vegetation, landforms, and water. Prereq: junior standing.

GEOG 463 Geography, Law, and the Environment Values underlying American legal approaches to environmental issues; the role of laws in reflecting and shaping human understanding and use of the environment. Prereq: junior standing.

GEOG 467: International Water Policy (4) Examines problems in water policy and governance in a global context. Draws on interdisciplinary perspectives, compares case studies, and analyzes institutions.

GEOG 475 China’s Economy (ASIA 480) (IC) provides a comprehensive introduction to China’s economy and development, and to the politics, sociology, and geography of contemporary China. The first half of the course will cover China’s socialist economy, transition to market economy, and reform period development (1978-present). The second half will delve into special topics: economic policy-making; the banking and finance systems; 5-Year Plans; state-owned industries; the Green Technology and Clean Energy races; the industrialization of food; the formation of the world’s largest consumer class; the historically unprecedented flow of 300 million peasants into rapidly rising cities, and why that is central to China’s economic growth and stability; and how China’s globalization is reshaping the rest of Asia, Africa and the global economy.

GEOL 310 Earth Resources and the Environment (SC) Geology of energy, mineral, and water resources and environmental issues related to their use. Topics include fossil fuels, metals, nuclear waste disposal, and water pollution.

HIST 415 Topic: Women and Globalization (only this topic is approved) (IC) will examine the the impact of U.S. neoliberal economy policies on women worldwide, with special focus on women’s changing roles in the international labor market. We will also examine cultural changes attendant to globalization that disproportionately affect women such as migration, the transmission of Western gender norms and the expansion of the international sex trade. We will trace the historical antecedents of free-trade policies from their origins in the post-WWII organizations/agreements such as the United Nations and GATT to modern organization/agreements, like NAFTA, the IMF and the World Bank. We will examine the diverse impact of these international economic policies on the women living and working in service economies, like the U.S., as well as in “majority world countries” where the most of the worlds’ goods are produced. We will also explore a variety of responses to globalization such as culture jamming, unionization, as well as micro-credit & fair trade movements.

HIST 473 American Environmental History Variable topics examine the social, cultural, economic, and political history of the American landscape; how Americans have understood, transformed, degraded, conserved, and preserved their environments. I: To 1800. II: 19th Century. III: 20th-Century Environment and Environmentalism. IV: Environment and the West.

INTL 323 Islam and Global Forces (IC) This is an introduction to the general salience of the Islamic religion in contemporary global politics, the pivotal role the religion plays in Muslim societies, and the effects of global forces (e.g., globalization processes, the global economy, mass media, and global political institutions) on the political economy of countries with major Muslim populations.

INTL 345 Africa Today: Issues and Concerns (IC) Introduces students to current challenges facing African peoples today. Extends survey of Africa courses, and prepares students for more advanced study regarding the African continent.

INTL 360 International Cooperation and Conflict (SSC, IP) Explores how both conflict and cooperation shape our highly globalized world.  Focuses on conflicts between nation states and para-states while recognizing that violence has a variety of causes and manifestations.  Our inquiry ranges from personal stories to official international policy while addressing the root causes of violence, both personal and institutional.

INTL 370: International Human Rights (SSC, IP) Survey of human rights, examining diverse perspectives on the concept, practice, and implementation of human rights and human rights regimes.

INTL 421 Gender and International Development (IP) Analysis of the changing roles, opportunities, and expectations of third-world women as their societies undergo social upheavals associated with the problematic effects of development.

INTL 423 Development and the Muslim World (IC) Introduction to discourse on current development in various Muslim societies. Focuses on North Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, and Southeast Asia.

INTL 431 Cross-Cultural Communication (4) (IC) Focuses on skills and insights needed by professionals working in cross-cultural settings. Considers values, development, education, politics, and environment as central to cross-cultural understanding.

INTL 433 Childhood in Cross-Cultural Perspective (IP) Explores the experience of childhood around the world and examines how this experience is shaped by beliefs about who and what children are and by local conditions and contingencies.

INTL 442 South Asia: Development and Social Change (IC) Introduction to the vast social changes and development issues confronting the South Asian subcontinent.

INTL 444 Development and Social Change in Southeast Asia (IC) Introduction to the region and to the complex social issues facing the peoples of Southeast Asia.

INTL 445 Development and Social Change in Sub-Saharan Africa Introduces theoretical and practical aspects of development and social change in sub-Saharan Africa, with focus on key issues in African development during the postcolonial era.

INTL 446 Development and Social Change in Latin America Explores development challenges, debt cycles, urban growth, neoliberalism, populism, socialism, gender, the environment, U.S.–Latin American relations, ecotourism, and drug geographies in the region.

INTL 447 Comparative Tribalisms (IP) Situates contemporary polemics in Africa and the U.S. regarding ethnic, racial, and religious violence, culture wars, and nationalism in a comparative analytic framework.

J 320 Gender, Media, and Diversity (IP) Inequities in mass media with regard to gender, race, and ethnicity. Ramifications and possible mechanisms of change.  Previously known as Women, Minorities and Media.

J 350 Principles of Public Relations Overview of public relations practice in a diverse global society, including theory, career opportunities, history, communication forms and channels, and legal and ethical concerns.

J 396 International Communication National and cultural differences in media and information systems, global news and information flows, implications of rapid technological change, and communication and information policies. Prereq: J 201, sophomore standing.

J 467 Issues in International Communication: Topics focus on global media issues. Prereq: J201.

LA 410– Sustainable Urban Design and Development in Asia (only this title is approved) Asia has become the largest battleground of urban development in the past three decades. Urban design projects greatly contribute to urban development but also press challenges on sustainability: how can we maintain environmental quality while improving social, cultural and economic conditions? This course focuses on helping students build their own critical thinking on sustainability through case studies in multiple Asian countries.

PHIL 340 Environmental Philosophy Considers the nature and morality of human relationships with the environment (e.g., the nature of value, the moral standing of nonhuman life).

PPPM 407 – Sem: Nonpft Legal Issues Nonprofit Legal Issues is a course for those who will be managing and leading nonprofits. In one class per week, using practical examples, this course will review and put into context legal issues affecting nonprofit organizations. A wide range of subjects will be covered, giving a broad layman’s overview of many basic areas of law, along with best practices and red flag areas. Readings will be articles and other practical materials. This course is not intended for those who will practice law.

PPPM 408- ENV Impact Statement This course introduces students to the process of environmental impact assessment and analysis and to implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act. NEPA compliance is required for most federally sponsored projects such as timber harvests, resource management plans, energy development, public housing and transportation projects or almost anything that uses federal funding. Many states have similar environmental regulatory processes. Participants will acquire and analyze an environmental impact statement as well as become familiar with the preparation of environmental impact statements and their use in project evaluation and impact mitigation.

PPPM 331 Environmental Management Introduction to environmental management. Focuses on solutions to problems in managing population, pollution, and resources.

PS 320  International Organization Studies efforts by states to cooperate in an effort to avoid or resolve conflict in the realms of security, trade, human rights, and the environment.

PS 330 Introduction to Latin American Governments and Politics (SSC, IC) introduces students primarily to political science concepts and theories as applied to the region but also draws on sociology and economics.  The course is designed to provide students with an introduction of the region by addressing historical and contemporary social, political, and economic developments and challenges.  It explores the causes and consequences of phenomena such as revolutions, democratization, and market-oriented economic reforms.  It gives students an overview of regional trends since colonization with more in-depth study of selected countries including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Guatemala, Mexico, and Venezuela.

PS 337 The Politics of Development (SSC, IC) Presents alternative perspectives on key north-south issues: trade, aid, foreign investment, debt, and the environment. Includes such institutions as the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization.

PS 367 Sci & Pol Climate Change (SSC) Understanding the causes, impacts, policies, and politics of global climate change from natural and social science perspectives. Climate change is the largest environmental problem currently facing the Earth. As we enter the second decade of the 21st century, we are increasingly aware of the causes, impacts, and likelihood of climate change. Yet, recent international meetings on climate change demonstrate that the nations (and people) of the world appear unwilling to take the actions that most scientists say are needed to avoid the most severe impacts of climate change. In short, the demand for action on climate change implied by most scientific evidence has not yet been matched by the supply of action from political leaders and policy-makers.

PS 380 Gender and Politics in Developing Countries (SSC, IP) is an interdisciplinary course (drawing extensively on political science, sociology, anthropology, women’s and gender studies, and economics); it is a “sampler” of the central debates about women in developing countries and the issues they face.  We apply classic feminist concepts (public/private divide, practical and strategic interests, gender essentialism, etc) to academic and popular discussions about “other” women.  It is designed to encourage students to critically examine gender politics in the developing world and the politics behind international efforts to “help” women in developing countries.

PS 471 Intergenerational Justice Examines the ethical and legal obligations that exist between earlier and later generations within a political society.  The course is designed for students of political science, philosophy, planning and public policy, environmental studies, history, and economics, as well as law students and those contemplating future legal studies.

PS 477 International Environmental Politics How nations solve international environmental problems. Explores major problems, processes, and current debates. Evaluates existing treaties through case studies. Prereq: ENVS 201 or PS 205.

SOC 303 World Population & Social Structure (SSC, IC) Introduction to population studies; analysis of historical, contemporary, and anticipated population conditions and trends as they relate to social situations and to the organization of society.

SOC 304 Community, Environment, and Society (SSC) Interrelationship of social and environmental factors in human communities, processes of community change, impact of environmental change on human communities.

SOC 416 Environmental Sociology Analysis of selected topics in environmental sociology.  Topics include environmental movement, impacts of technological change, environmental policy and the state, environmental values, attitudes, and behaviors.

WGS 351 Decolonial Feminism (SSC, IC) Explanation of feminist activism and women’s movements globally, organizing to challenge the state, civil society, international agencies, and corporations for a more just world.
Back to Top of Page




Skip to toolbar