Pedagogy in Action > Library > Using an Earth System Approach > ESS Learning Resources > Human dimensions

Human dimensions

  • Introduction to the Human Dimensions of Global Change. This module provides students with a broad overview of the human dimensions of global environmental change. The complexity of global change is reduced to four basic and interactive parts: human actions that initiate changes in the structure and operation of the biosphere; the consequences of these actions on terrestrial ecology; the combined effects of the two on potential climate change; and human responses to global change, with a focus on climate change. The module has five broad objectives: to provide an overview of the problem and study of global environmental change, to demonstrate the complexity of this change and its origins in society and nature, to demonstrate the interconnections of its basic human and natural components, to involve students in activities that demonstrate the complexity and interconnectivity of the subject and its basic components, and to illustrate to students the extent to which they may affect and may be affected by aspects of global environmental change. The module activities draw out the linkages and the human components of the topic and raise broader questions about the concept of global change as a whole. Students actively engage with the material through role-playing, group discussions, map interpretation, creative writing, debates, and data analysis and interpretation. (more info)
  • Principles, Structure, & Implementation of International Environmental Law. This module introduces the fundamental norms and institutions that comprise international environmental law and then focuses on six specific topics: air pollution and protection of the atmosphere, hazardous waste, endangered species, international rivers, the global commons, and forest ecosystems. Study and discussions questions are included. (more info)
  • Societal Impacts Program. The Collaborative Program on the Societal Impacts and Economic Benefits of Weather Information (SIP) was created to provide a focal point for assembling, coordinating, developing, and synthesizing research and information on the societal impacts and economic benefits of weather information with the goal of minimizing injury, loss of life, and destruction of property. Materials available at the SIP site include presentations and reports, overviews of research projects, and a link to the Digital Library on Societal Impacts (DLSI), a web-based resource for collecting and disseminating research findings related to the use and value of weather forecasts. Other resources include the Extreme Weather Sourcebook, which provides information on the economic and other impacts of hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, lightning, and other U.S. weather phenomena, and the Societal Aspects of Weather website, which also provides information and general resources on the impacts of weather. There is also the WeatherZine, an online magazine devoted to weather impacts, and the Weather and Climate Forecast Use and Value Bibliography, a one-stop resource for information on peer-reviewed studies of the use and value of weather and climate forecasts. (more info)