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Ecological Economics, Values, and Policy (EEVP)

The Departments of Science and Technology Studies and Economics jointly offer the Program in Ecological Economics, Values, and Policy, which offers both bachelor’s and master’s of science degrees.

EEVP combines the best of both departments — economic analysis and a broader humanities and social science analysis that emphasize the roles science and technology play in today’s global economy and culture. Given the strong interdisciplinary background acquired in EEVP, graduates can play leading roles in resolving the critical environmental and social problems of the 21st century.

The United Nations reports that the demand for EEVP-type program graduates exceeds the supply. According to the UN, it is crucial that we educate people who understand that “sustainable development does not merely deal with the conservation of nature or the management of ecosystems, but more broadly and fundamentally aims at new models of societal development and social transformation.”

Baccalaureate Program

EEVP has four main components: eight economics courses (all courses are four credit hours), eight STS courses, 10 science or engineering courses, and four free electives as well as an H&SS First-Year Studies course. The science and engineering component should earn the equivalent of a minor in environmental science or engineering, which can cover such topics as ecology, environmental chemistry or geology, water and wastewater infrastructure, and hazardous waste management.

In addition, the economics and social science courses that form the core of EEVP equip students with a variety of skills and methods to assess the economic costs, human health impacts, and quality-of-life changes that are associated with the evolving lifestyles and living conditions in today’s society.

Cultural studies add to EEVP’s strong global focus, which prepares students for a successful career in policy analysis, international development, project assessment, and many other areas.

The capstone STS Senior Project, on which students work with an adviser from each department, integrates the economics and STS components.

Concentrations

The EEVP curriculum offers several concentration “options”:

  • STS Concentration
  • STS Methods/Statistics
  • STS Technical
  • Advanced STS

Master’s Program

The Departments of Science and Technology Studies and Economics also jointly offer an EEVP master’s program. The program builds on Rensselaer’s nationally recognized expertise and course offerings in the economic, political, social, cultural, and ethical implications in the interactions of science, technology, environment, and society.

EEVP is meant for early and mid-career professionals in state and local government, secondary education, business, and the nonprofit sector (professionals in environmental nongovernmental organizations) who wish to upgrade their skills and advance their careers.

Building on required courses in environmental, ecological, and natural resource economics and in environmental philosophy and policy, EEVP helps students acquire the skills such as policy analysis and ecological valuation that are necessary to address the complex multidisciplinary problems any society faces in areas such as environment and health, appropriate technology, and sustainable development.

The 21st century promises a continuation of the march toward globalization. Dealing with the prospects and problems of a world economy and the growing human impact on the natural world requires an education that is both broad and deep. EEVP offers “hands on” training that puts into practice the slogan “think globally, act locally.”

Learn more about the Ecological Economics, Values, and Policy program

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