Sustainability Science – A Key Concept for Future Design

University of Tokyo Sustainability

Description

Sustainability is indispensable for the future of humankind. Sustainability science has emerged as an effort to tackle the complex problems the world is facing today. Lecturers from different disciplines provide a holistic overview of key issues in sustainability including industrial pollution, an aging society, human-nature connection, urban planning, resilience, environmental governance, and education for sustainable development.

In this course, you will learn about historical and current sustainability issues that have emerged around the world, as well as some of the approaches that have been used to solve them. You will be exposed to industrial and water pollution control issues, in addition to challenges caused by an aging and shrinking population.

You will also learn about the human-nature connection and initiatives that aim to create sustainable societies in harmony with nature, based on the concept of Socio-Ecological Production Landscapes and Seascapes (SEPLS). You will explore how ecosystem-based disaster risk reduction (Eco-DRR) approaches can be used to reestablish the human-nature connection through re-naturalization of damaged environments.

This course will also consider an urban planning point of view by exploring the value of an urban-rural land use mixture to create new sustainable societies and resilient megacities.

Finally, you will learn about environmental governance, a crucial element for progress towards a sustainable future. You will be introduced to Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) as a learning method for sustainable development and discuss international debates on ESD.

Japanese perspectives are emphasized throughout the course in the hopes of providing concrete value to solving contemporary sustainability issues.

Learning Objectives

You will learn

- Historical lessons and current sustainability challenges in Japan and other parts of the world
- International and Japanese initiatives in the field of human-nature connection
- Japanese experience in urban-rural land use mixture
- Frontier knowledge in the area of environmental governance and ESD
- Theoretical concepts of sustainability science