This course surveys a range of US and international environmental justice projects in traditionally marginalized communities exploring why some projects fail to have a lasting impact and others succeed. The course gives students a chance to understand how scientists sustainability policy experts lawyers and grassroots activists working in environmental justice apply their expertise to solving some of our planet's most challenging issues. In each case study students learn about the environmental problem and the laws policy economics and science that make the problem challenging to solve. Students hear from experts who are doing the workófrom groundwater conservation in California's central valley to fighting coal pollution in Puerto Rico to creating sustainable fisheries in the Philippinesóand how they have engaged communities and stakeholders to make these projects succeed. The course also provides an overview of how large and small nonprofits government agencies and companies partner to achieve successful outcomes. At the end of the semester students have a chance to work on a project create a stakeholder engagement plan and apply the best practices learned throughout the semester. This course gives students experiential knowledge of managing a sustainability project with many diverse stakeholders who have competing interests but common goals.
Harvard Division of Continuing Education