• Offered by Crawford School of Public Policy
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Environmental Management & Development
  • Areas of interest Development Studies, Environmental Studies, Policy Studies, Political Economy
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person

This course is available for in-person and remote (online) learning.

The human civilization is experiencing a rapidly changing climate, loss of bio-diversity and a steadily degrading environment. Many of these changes were brought onto the Earth by human action, leading scholars and experts to call it 'the Anthropocene', a geological era in which the human species have become dominant over all others. This course exposes students to the most contentious issues related to development and the environment in the Anthropocene, and examine their connections.  It critically builds on the ideas within the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), exploring a wide variety of thematic topics and a great deal of academic debate through 12 exciting topics or themes or modules, in each of which a couple of readings are given as 'core' or 'required' readings. These readings aim to present a range of research-based arguments and debates, and reflect the wider implications of these thematic topics for understanding the relationship between the economic, social, and political processes associated with development and the real-life practice of environmental and natural resource management. 

The course will expose students to wider debates on sustainability and nature in context of development. From setting the scene with the SDGs, the course will discuss issues around the Anthropocene, Nine Planetary Boundaries, climate change, extractivism, energy transition, agrarian transformation, waters and rivers, and methodological approaches such as Political Ecology as well as theoretical issues such as the epistemology of the environment.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the current debates around contemporary environmental and development.
  2. Summarise and formulate arguments and contribute, individually and collaboratively to debates about development and the environment in the Anthropocene.
  3. Critically identify, analyse, and discuss long-term trends in development and environment.
  4. Demonstrate, through identification and critical evaluation, an understanding of the implications of the impacts of development on the environment.
  5. Communicate, orally and in writing, complex arguments and responses to critical debates around environment and development.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Scenario Exercise (40) [LO 2,4,5]
  2. Class presentation of final essay (10) [LO 2,3]
  3. Final Essay (2000 words) (40) [LO 2,3,4,5]
  4. Participation and engagement with the course through in-person or online classes (10) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


130 hours of overall learning, comprising 36 class hours and independent study

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Prescribed Texts

Texts are prescribed on an annual basis. Primarily, specific readings ( recent articles from journals and/or book chapters) are assigned for each topic.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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There are no current offerings for this course.

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