ESPP Spring 2017 Courses

Environmental Science and Public Policy 90B. Structural Transformation of African Agriculture and Rural Spaces
Course ID Number: 203665
Christopher Barrett
Thursdays, 2:00-4:30pm. HUCE, Museum of Comp Zool, Room 440

Socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable economic growth in Africa, the world’s poorest and most agrarian continent, requires structural transformation. This seminar explores the theory and, especially, the current empirical evidence on the ongoing and uneven transformation of rural Africa and its agricultural systems, largely but not exclusively through an economics lens. Students will read and discuss ongoing policy and research debates around, for example, smallholder farmer-centered strategies; public and private agricultural R&D (including biotechnology); sustainable agricultural intensification; food labor and land markets; the role of external development NGOs and non-market institutions; risk management; and the role of the rural non-farm economy.

Environmental Science and Public Policy 90D. Planetary Health: Understanding the Human Health Impacts of Accelerating Environmental Change
Course ID Number: 203664
Samuel Myers and Christopher Golden (Harvard Chan School of Public Health)
Wednesdays, 3:00-5:30pm. HUCE, Museum of Comp Zool, Room 429

Rapid human population growth and even more rapid growth in consumption are driving a transformation of most of Earth’s natural systems including its climate system, its oceans, land cover, biogeochemical cycles, biodiversity, and coastal and fresh water systems.  These systems underpin global food production, our exposure to infectious disease and natural hazards, even the habitability of the places where we live.  We will explore the global human health impacts of this transformation of natural systems.

Environmental Science and Public Policy 90Y. World Food Systems and the Environment
Course ID Number: 159984
Noel Michele Holbrook (Dept. of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology)
Mondays, 2:45-5:15pm. HUCE, Museum of Comp Zool, Room 440

This seminar examines the world’s systems for the production and distribution of food as they relate to the earth’s physical, chemical, and biological systems.  Using scientific readings, papers about economics and politics, and cases about firms, we consider agriculture and food from scientific, public policy, and business strategy perspectives and in relation to environmental issues such as greenhouse gas emissions, carbon and nitrogen cycles, water and soil conservation (including erosion, pollution, and salinization), and the use of genetically modified organisms.  Geographic and topical coverage will be broad:  the Americas, Europe, Asia, and Africa; as well as water, seeds, fertilizers, animal protein, trade and development. We expect to have numerous guests from the scientific community, government, and business. Some backgroundin biology, government or economics is useful, but not required.
Note: Please pick up the reading from Lorraine Maffeo in HUCE, 26 Oxford Street 4th floor, before the first class meeting.