DRAFT – working document Schedule and assignments

Week 1 – the world in 2022

Tuesday, September 13

  • Welcome to our course.

Thursday, September 15

  • Environmental policy in our time: your questions.

Friday, September 16

  • Workshopping your research idea

Week 2 – policy as conflict transformation

Tuesday, September 20

Thursday, September 22

Thursday, September 22 (REQUIRED) – Howard Woodin Colloquium – MIDD-ES CORE PANEL DISCUSSION: Conflict Transformation.

  • Dan Brayton, Julian W. Abernethy Professor of Literature 
  • Jeff Howarth, Associate Professor of Geography
  • Jon Isham, Professor of Economics and Environmental Studies
  • Monica Przyperhart, Visiting Laboratory Professor in Environmental Studies

Friday, September 23

  • Workshopping your research ideas

Week 3 – Economic growth and its discontents

Tuesday, September 27

*Wednesday, September 28*

  • Required talk: “Misguided Economic Pursuit and Depleted Planetary Boundaries Planetary Emergency on the 50th Anniversary of the Club of Rome ‘Limits to Growth’ Report.” Mahaney Arts Center at 7:00PM 

Thursday, September 29

  • Visit with Bill McKibben

Friday, September 30

  • Paper proposal (including three proposed sources) due in class via Canvas

Week 4

Tuesday, October 4

Vig and Kraft, Chapter 2: “Racing to the Top, Bottom, or the Middle of the Pack? The Evolving State Government Role in Environmental Protection.”  Barry Rabe.

Thursday, October 6

Sunshine state shuns solar as overcast New York basks in clean energy boom.” Oliver Milman. March 27, 2017. The Guardian

Why This Tea Party Leader Is Seeing Green on Solar Energy.” Diane Toomey. March 26, 2015. YaleEnvironment360

A Gun-Owning Trump Fan’s New Crusade: Clean Energy.”  Ivan Penn. The New York Times, February 28, 2018.

Minority groups back energy companies in fight against solar power.” Evan Halper. February 9, 2015. Los Angeles Times.

Friday, October 7

Week 5

Tuesday, October 11

Layzer, Chapter 4 (3rd edition): “Community Activism and Environmental Justice: The Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative.”  (ERES)

How One Boston Neighborhood Stopped Gentrification in its Tracks.” Yes! magazine, January 28, 2015.

Thursday, October 13

Vig and Kraft, Chapter 8: “Energy Policy: Fracking, Renewables and the Keystone XL Pipeline.” Edward P. Weber, David Bernell, and Hilary S. Boudet.

Exxon, Keystone, and the Turn Against Fossil Fuels.” Bill McKibben. The New Yorker. November 6, 2015.

“The Fight Doesn’t End Until We Stop It at the SourceIndigenous Environmental Network. Interview with Kandi Mosset. August 11, 2017

A new generation of activists, born next to an oil refinery.” Jesse Hardman. High Country News. March 7, 2018

Friday, October 14 – midterm recess

Week 6

Tuesday, October 18

Midterm exam

Thursday, October 20

Friday, October 21

Annotated bibliography due in class via Canvas

Week 7 

Tuesday, October 25

Vig and Kraft, Chapter 3: “Environmental Advocacy in the Obama Years: Assessing New Strategies for Political Change.”  Matthew Nisbet.

Thursday, October 27

May Boeve: the new face of the climate change movement.” Karl Mathiesen.  The Guardian. April 8, 2015.

Friday, October 28

Week 8

Tuesday, November 1

Washington at Work: Back Rooms and Clean Air. Richard E. Cohen. 1995. Preface and Chapter 1 and 2. (ERES)

In class: ‘An Act of Congress.’

Thursday, November 3

Vig and Kraft, Chapter 10: “Applying Market Principles to Environmental Policy”  Sheila Olmsted. (pp. 215-230.)

Washington at Work: Back Rooms and Clean Air. Richard E. Cohen. 1995. Chapters 4 and 7. (ERES)

Friday, November 4

Discussion of papers

Week 9

Tuesday, November 8

Thursday, November 10

Layzer, Chapter 7. “Jobs vs. the Environment: Saving the Northern Spotted Owl.”

Friday, November 11

Week 10

Tuesday, November 15

Reading TBD

Thursday, November 17

In-class discussion of progress of papers. with two assignments on Canvas.

Friday, November 18 – no meeting

Three recent articles on solution

This bat is the first to make it off the endangered species list. Celebrate with a shot of tequila.” Darryl Fears. The Washington Post. April 21, 2018.

Chesapeake Bay grass resurgence is first big conservation success tied to humans, scientists say.” Katherine Hafner. The Virginian-Pilot. Apr 13, 2018; updated April 24, 2018.

A Smorgasbord of Solutions for Global Warming.” David Bornstein. The New York Times. April 25, 2018.

First draft of policy paper due by 11:00PM on Sunday, April 29 via Canvas.

Week 11

Tuesday, November 29

Layzer, Chapter 3: “Love Canal: Hazardous Waste and the Politics of Fear.”

Thursday, December 1

Meet the Mom Who Helped Expose Flint’s Toxic Water Nightmare.” Julia Lurrie. Mother Jones.  January 21, 2016.

Butler, Lindsey J., Madeleine K. Scammell, and Eugene B. Benson. “The Flint, Michigan, Water Crisis: A Case Study in Regulatory Failure and Environmental Injustice.” Environmental Justice, vol. 9, no. 4, 2016, pp. 93-97.

After Flint: Environmental Justice as Equal Protection.” David A. Dana and Deborah Tuerkheimer. 111 Northwest. University Law Review. 879 (2017).

Friday, December 2

The danger of a single story.” Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

Peer review of policy paper due in class. Please bring two paper copies (one for your peer and one for Professor Isham) and also submit on Canvas. 

Week 12

Tuesday, December 6

Wednesday, December 8

Four Years After Declaring War on Pollution, China is Winning.” Michael Greenstone, The New York Times. March 12, 2018

Friday, December 9

Layzer, Chapter 18: “Politics, Values, and Environmental Policy Change.”

Week 13

Monday, December 12

Discussion of your papers and class wrap-up

Final exam TBD

Final draft of policy paper due by 10:00PM on Tuesday, May 22, via Canvas.


Alexis de Tocqueville. 1835. Democracy in America (three chapters):
Chapter 5: Of the Uses which the Americans Make of Public Associations
Chapter 6: Of the Relation of Public Associations and the Newspapers.
Chapter 7: Relation of Civil to Political Association