SOC41180 Global Responses to Climate Change

Academic Year 2023/2024

Climate change is one of the most pressing challenges currently facing societies at local, national, and global levels. This module examines climate change from a sociological perspective, with a focus on the interactions between human societies and the natural environment. The overall aim of this module is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of social and global dimensions of climate change, while critically analysing global issues and potential solutions. Throughout the module, students will engage with key sociological theories, concepts and empirical research and will examine topics such as environmental inequality, climate-induced migration, consumption, waste, sustainability, energy transitions, pollution, social movements, and social acceptance from interdisciplinary and comparative perspectives. In addition, students will be introduced to social life cycle assessment (sLCA) in assessing the social impacts of climate change solutions and policy interventions. By the end of the module, students will develop a deep understanding of the sociological underpinnings of climate change, enabling them to contribute to informed and sustainable solutions in addressing this global challenge.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

Students successfully completing the module will:
1) Acquire an understanding of social dimensions of climate change and engage with key concepts, debates, and issues;
2) Display competence in interpreting and analysing theoretical, methodological and empirical work on social dimensions of climate change from an interdisciplinary perspective;
3) Reflect and critically analyse social dimensions of climate change;
4) Identify key issues and consider possible solutions from a comparative and global perspectives.

Indicative Module Content:

Global Responses to Climate Change will cover the following topics from an interdisciplinary and comparative perspective:
• Concepts, sociological theories and social dimensions of climate change;
• Environmental inequality;
• Global governance, policy approaches and climate change (including SDGs);
• Climate-induced migration;
• Social movements and social acceptance;
• Climate change, pollution and health;
• Consumerism, consumption and waste;
• Climate change and ‘green technologies’;
• Sustainability;
• Social life cycle assessment (sLCA).

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
This module will follow a face-to-face lecture/seminar format. It will include lectures, group discussions,
active/task-based learning, peer and group work, case-based learning, student presentations. 
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 In Module Component Repeat Offered
Essay: 3,000 word essay. Further instructions will be given in the first lecture. Coursework (End of Trimester) n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% No


Presentation: In-class presentation on a social dimension of climate change. Further instructions will be given in the first lecture. Throughout the Trimester n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% No



Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring Yes - 2 Hour
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Individual, written feedback will be provided through the VLE. Additional feedback is available during office hours.