F&ES 610a Science to Solutions: How Should We Manage Water

Faculty: Shimon C. Anisfeld*, Bradford S. Gentry, Peter A. Raymond, Julie Zimmerman
Subject of Instruction: Water Resources.
Not Currently Offered

While there are many different approaches to understanding and managing environmental problems, most involve several major steps: (1) describing/understanding the nature of the problem and its causes; (2) using technical, policy, social, and other management tools/processes to help address it; while (3) recognizing/making the value judgments embedded in each (what problems/data are “important”? what solutions are “best”?). The purpose of this introductory course is to illustrate how an M.E.M. student might integrate scientific understanding with management choices as part of an effort to address any particular environmental issue. Ideally, it should help students choose areas of specialization, as well as improve their ability to engage in integrative problem solving—both in their final term and after they graduate. The class is focused on water issues, but the integrative structure of the class could be used on other problems as well. The class is built around a case-study approach, in which the faculty bring their different perspectives to bear on understanding and addressing the issues raised in a diverse set of cases, including: the “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico; the New York City drinking water supply; Australia’s response to water scarcity; the Cochabamba “water wars”; and  one other case for the final. Preference given to first-year M.E.M. students. Three hours lecture, one hour discussion each week.

F&ES 610 is a prerequisite for:

F&ES 712: Water Resource Management

Preference given to first year MEM students.