Circular Economy and Degrowth Principles
The conventional economic model is based on the hypothesis of infinite monetary growth, made of virtual bank money. Nonetheless it also requires considerable inputs of energy and materials, which are not infinite and have an impact on our planet. Environmental signals show us we are on the edge of a crisis and the uncertainty about our future environment relates to the development of a new discipline: ecological economics.
The course aims at presenting a new perspective in the economic field by relating it to the environment: it will consider the possibility of green economic growth, the main dilemmas and implications for the environment; students will be able to contrast two economic visions, that of growth-based economics and of ecological economics and the real-world implications of each one: the trade-off between economic growth (and job creation) and environmental protection and social justice. As well it aims to re-embed economic analysis with social and human dimensions.
The course will adopt Team-Based Learning, a novel teaching method in which the students have to read and watch compulsory material prior to the class, and will be evaluated with a closed-answer quiz, presentation of video or book extracts or brief reports done at the first hour of some classes.
Other days, the first hour will be dedicated to interactive discussions based on the assignments given in preparation to the class. The second hour will normally consist of a taught class. In the third hour a tutorial will be offered to each student, individually or in a small group, on a weekly base. A couple of hours of guided activities will follow, mainly related to watching videos or learning about the environmental justice atlas, or the social multi-criteria evaluation.
Homework assignments will mainly consist of reading written documents (books and papers) and the preparation for the group presentations of the next morning, or the writing of short reports based on the activities and exercises done in class.
|Week||Contents||Teaching / lerning activites|
|1||The circular economy and its ecological limitations||
Monday: presentation of the course. Tuesday to Friday: compulsory home readings, quiz, short class, video watching, team work, class presentation and discussion.
|2||Applications of Circular Economics, and the Donut Economy||
Compulsory home readings, quiz, short class, video watching, team work, class presentation and discussion.
|3||Degrowth principles, field trips in town||Monday and Tuesday: compulsory home readings, quiz, short class, video watching, team work, class presentation and discussion.|
From Monday to Friday.
From 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Class attendance, with signature sheet, 35% of the final mark, with 100% attendance = 10, 50% = 5 and so on.
- From day 2 to day 13 of the course: 5-6 team-based closed-answer quizzes, based on the compulsory readingsin preparation for the class. [Contributing to 25% of the final mark].
- From day 2 to day 12 of the course: group video presentations –depending on the size of the team and the number of enrolled students, each team will present once in class. [Contributing to 20% of the final mark].
- By the beginning of week 3 prepare a report based on an environmental conflict that the team has to analyze, for uploading in the Atlas of Environmental Justice (ejatlas.org). [Contributing to 20% of the final mark]. By the end of the class on day 13 (Wednesday of week 3) the student evaluation will have been completely evaluated and communicated.
- Readings will be available from this online book (most in Part I and Part II): Daly, H. and Farley, J. Ecological Economics Principles And Applications
- Raworth, K., 2017. Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist.
- A tutorial booklet on Social Multicriteria Evaluation (attached, with further readings in the reference section)
- Doughnut Economics Action Lab: Creating City Portraits, a Methodological Guide
- Analyze and discuss part of the book “Degrowth, a vocaboulary for a new era” and the book “Pluriverse”
- Reading of papers related to degrowth
- 5-6 activities from this website
Claudio Cattaneo holds a PhD in environmental science is contract professor of Ecological Economics at UAB where he directs the ICTA-UAB masters in Political Ecology Degrowth and Environmental Justice and the online masters in Degrowth, Ecology, Economics and Policy. He is a consultant in Barcelona Regional, applying the framework of the donut economics for the municipality of Barcelona. He is also a member of Research and Degrowth and of the Can Masdeu eco-community, in the hills of Barcelona. His research interests are related to degrowth studies, the donut economics, the squatters movement and other socioenvironmental studies. He his author of several papers in peer-reviewed journals, book chapters and editor ofthe book “The Squatters Movementin Europe, Pluto Press”. He has a 15-year teaching experience in ecological economics.
- Department of Economy and History of Economics
- E-mail: Claudio.email@example.com