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Syllabus for

Academic year
ENM015 - Technical change and the environment
Teknikevolution och miljö
 
Syllabus adopted 2019-02-21 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPTSE
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Energy and Environmental Systems and Technology, Industrial Engineering and Management
Department: 45 - TECHNOLOGY MANAGEMENT AND ECONOMICS


Teaching language: English
Application code: 28116
Open for exchange students: Yes
Block schedule: A

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0105 Written and oral assignments 7,5c Grading: TH   7,5c    

In programs

MPTSE INDUSTRIAL ECOLOGY, MSC PROGR, Year 1 (compulsory)
MPMAR MARITIME MANAGEMENT, MSC PROGR, Year 2 (elective)
MTS Humans, Technology, Society, Year 1 
MPPDE PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT, MSC PROGR, Year 2 (elective)
MPSES SUSTAINABLE ENERGY SYSTEMS, MSC PROGR, Year 2 (elective)
MPSES SUSTAINABLE ENERGY SYSTEMS, MSC PROGR, Year 1 (elective)

Examiner:

Björn Sandén

  Go to Course Homepage

Theme:

MTS 7,5 hec


Eligibility:


In order to be eligible for a second cycle course the applicant needs to fulfil the general and specific entry requirements of the programme that owns the course. (If the second cycle course is owned by a first cycle programme, second cycle entry requirements apply.)
Exemption from the eligibility requirement: Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling these requirements.

Course specific prerequisites

Basic knowledge in environmental science or environmental engineering.

Aim

The course aims at putting technology into context. It aims at making the student aware of the interdependence between technical change, societal development, and the natural environment, in order to be able to take part in knowledgeable discussions on how technical change may help or hinder our ability to deal with environmental problems and resource limitations in the coming decades. The course provides knowledge of historical developments and current trends and introduces the student to different theoretical frameworks that can be used to analyse change.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

... describe the role of technology in society and society's relation to nature in a historical context
... describe the implications of technical change for sustainable development
... describe and explain drivers and barriers in industry and society for introducing new technology and the role of politics in this process
... describe some basic theories and models of technical change and demonstrate an accurate use of concepts from the literature
... critically examine environmental policy and technology assessments
... combine knowledge of historical patterns, theoretical models and physical constraints with technological imagination to formulate plausible scenarios of change towards sustainability or its opposite.

Content

The first part of the course puts the current industrial society into a historical context. A 10 000 year history of the relationships between Technology, Society and Nature is briefly explored and the evolution of the industrial society is studied in more detail. In the second part, different theoretical frameworks that can be used to understand the process of technical change are discussed, including economics of innovation and historical and social studies of technology. The third part deals with how an understanding of technical change can be used when thinking about the future, assessing novel technologies or addressing grand challenges, such as climate change, with corporate strategy or governmental policy.

Organisation

The course is organised as a series of lectures and seminars. The lectures present selected parts of the literature and complement the literature with additional material. At the seminars, some topics are discussed in greater detail. Some of the seminars are compulsory. Written assignments are given during the course.

Literature

Grübler, Arnulf, Technology and global change, Cambridge University Press
Ponting, Clive, A new green history of the world, Penguin Books
Collection of articles

Examination including compulsory elements

The major part of the exmaniation comes in the form of a take-home exam with a follow-up oral examination (75%). Three web based tests and a voluntary assignment make up a minor part of the basis for grading (25%). In addition, there are two compulsory seminars and two compulsory hand-ins. 


Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.