ENVP10030 Environmental Economics

Academic Year 2021/2022

Contemporary societies face key environmental challenges both at a local and a global level, such as climate change, air pollution, and nature conservation. In their decision-making processes, policymakers face the significant challenge of incorporating the interactions between economic development and the environment in which it takes place. The objective of this course is to familiarise students with key ideas of economic thinking and basic concepts and methods of Environmental Economics. The course will present some theoretical foundations of the discipline as well as some techniques employed by academics and policymakers to identify, analyse, evaluate, and solve key environmental problems.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On completion of this course, the successful student should, inter alia, be able to:

- Have an appreciation of economic thinking and how this can inform environmental policy decisions.
- Understand the economic approach to analysing why environmental problems occur.
- Understand the logic behind economic environmental policies such as the carbon tax.
- Be aware of behavioural economic policy instruments to solve environmental problems.
- Be aware of the tools available to assess the costs and benefits of policies.

Indicative Module Content:

- Key economic concepts
- Introduction to Environmental Economics
- Market Failures; Why Environmental Problems Occur
- Overcoming Market Failures; Environmental Economic Policy Design
- Evaluating Projects and Policies
- Behavioural Environmental Economics and Nudging

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
- Lectures presenting basic concepts
- Lectures with research-informed teaching
- Participative learning in class
- Active Learning through class discussion
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Multiple Choice Questionnaire: The multiple choice questionnaire contains questions on all lectures. Week 12 n/a Graded No


Assignment: Students produce a concept to provide essential information for the design of an environmental economic policy relying on environmental economic tools. Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Assignment: Students produce a policy-brief suggesting a solution to an environmental problem of their choice. The policy-brief highlights key concepts from the environmental economics literature. Varies over the Trimester n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Peer review activities

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

The pre-assignment feedback includes group feedback on the presentations you'll give and peer feedback in smaller groups. The post-assessment feedback for the 2 essay assignments will come in the form of feedback sheets and the post-assessment feedback for the Quiz is just the points you'll get in the Quiz.

Keohane, M. N. O., & Olmstead, S. M. (2016). Markets and the Environment. Island Press. Chapters 1-5 and 8-10.

For basic economics concepts, lectures and readings will be complemented by videos. For example, the videos by Tyler Cowen and Alex Tabarrok on https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL-uRhZ_p-BM4XnKSe3BJa23-XKJs_k4KY (At least 1-11).

Atkinson, G., Braathen, N. A., Mourato, S., & Groom, B. (2018). Cost Benefits Analysis and the Environment: Further Developments and Policy Use. OECD.

Gifford, R. (2011). The dragons of inaction: psychological barriers that limit climate change mitigation and adaptation. American psychologist, 66(4), 290.

Carlsson, F., Gravert, C., Johansson-Stenman, O., & Kurz, V. (2019). Nudging as an environmental policy instrument. Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, 2020.
Name Role
Dr Liana Ricci Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 Thurs 14:00 - 15:50