Environmental Sociology and Communication Issues

This course aims to deal with the social dimensions of Environmental Issues, in particular Climate Change (CC).
Special attention is reserved to issues of a communicational nature that have recently made CC such a crucial political issue.
We intend to inform on the different aspects of the scientific work developed in this field crisscrossing both
theoretical and empirical dimensions. In overview we will focus:
- Perception of climate change and its effects on social behaviors.
- The building of lay and scientific knowledge;
- Media coverage of the topic and its impact on public opinion
- New public policy implementation strategies with focus on different territorial scales .
- Public participation and decision making processes in contexts of urgency and complexity:
Also to equip students with:

i) the understanding of the role of Social Sciences in Environmental Issues and CC, and
ii) supply the necessary methodological toolkit to allow for independent research on the covered issues.

Syllabus:
1. Environment, Environmentalism and Society – historical framework of environmental issues
2. Environmental Sociology – fundamental debates: Constructivism/Realism; Development Policies/Human
Ecology; Ecological Modernisation/ Limits to Growth
3. Themes, Problems and Research on Climate Change – causes and Impacts of Environmental Issues and
Risks; Practices and Environmental Values; Public Participation; Scientific, Political and Ethical Controversies
4. Environment and Global Media – modern world communication
5. Media Studies, Environment and Climate Change – the rise and flow of Climate Change in the Media
6. Environmental Policies, Climate Change and Governance Environmental reform, institutional and legal
frameworks; public information systems and participatory models; change and blockade factors;
7. Climate Change and Sustainability – Knowledge (Scientific and Common); civic mobilization and decisionmaking in the face of urgency and complexity.