SOEE3112 Environmental Risk: Science, Policy and Management

Reading List
  • Taught: Semester 1 View timetable
  • Credits: 10
  • Class Size: 70
  • Module Manager: Dr Yim Ling Siu
  • Email: Y.L.Siu@leeds.ac.uk
  • This Module is approved as a Discovery Module
  • This module replaces SOEE3111

Discovery module overview

Module Summary

Module Summary

The aim of this module is to provide a holistic understanding of the links between environmental risk, management and communication, and how these three components have effects on environmental policy and decision-making to aid sustainable development. The objectives are to provide students the basic concepts of: the definitions of risk; risk calculation and risk assessment approaches and methods; risk perceptions; the contemporary environmental risk management strategies; and the role and technique of risk communication in decision-making.

Objectives

The assessment, perception, communication and management of risk are increasingly seen as major components of environmental policy decision-making. The aim of this module is to adopt a systematic approach to explore the links of these major components, examining how environmental risks are assessed, understood, communicated and managed in a range of contexts.
Its objectives are to provide a broad understanding of: the nature of risks; the scientific perspective of risk; using scientific advice for environmental policy and decision-making; the social dimension of risk; how risk decisions are made in a range of contexts (e.g. economic considerations, institutional settings); the contemporary environmental risk management strategies; and the role and technique of risk communication in decision-making.

Syllabus

  • - Introduction
  • - What is risk?
  • - Risk calculation & risk assessment: approaches and methods
  • - Scientific uncertainty
  • - Why different people perceive risk in different ways?
  • - Risk classification schemes & risk types
  • - Environmental risk management strategies
  • - Trust in environmental risk decision-making
  • - Communicating risk: models, principles & best practices
  • - Reflection and revision

Learning Outcomes

To develop scholarship and skills in the understanding of environmental risks, including aspects of environmental risk assessment, management, perception and communication; to increase critical awareness of the dichotomy of science-based and social values laden environmental risk assessment and decisions; to gain understanding of the need for balancing technical, social and economic issues in managing environmental risks; and to gain understanding of the need for communicating decisions that involve environmental risk and its uncertainty.

Skills Outcomes

  • - To gain analytical skills in the understanding of the role and component of environmental risk assessment (i.e. risk identification, dose-expose assessment, exposure assessment and risk characterisation);
  • - To gain confidence in providing a critical evaluation of the science-based or social values laden environmental risk decision;
  • - To gain understanding of the principles and techniques in communicating decisions that involve environmental risks, including the uncertainty inherent in Science.

Assessment and teaching

Assessment and teaching

Coursework

Assesment type Notes % of formal assesment
Essay Individual written essay 2,500 words 85
Group Project Groupwork presentation 15
Total percentages (Assessment Coursework) 100

Private Study

Reading – 40 hours (4 hours per week)
Assignment preparation – 40 hours

Teaching methods

Delivery type Number Length hours Student hours
Group learning 10 1 10
Lecture 10 1 10
Private Study Hours 80
Total Contact Hours 20
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits) 100

Reading List

Reading List
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