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Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati

Environment and Development

Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati and NPTEL via Swayam


The course will consist of theoretical application and environmental knowledge pertaining to sustainable development. The course analyses the reciprocal interaction between the physical environment, the social organization and human behaviour in the context of development. The course will introduce students with an overview of environmental ethics, debates and change and to facilitate their understanding and analysis of the inter-relationship between environment and development issues and apply them to their own experience and work. To enhance the students’ knowledge of the nature of and underlying causes of the most pressing environmental concerns and to understand how these impact on the lives and livelihoods of the local community. To look at the possibilities for environmental regeneration providing an analysis of case studies of local sustainable development initiatives and community based natural resource management. After the successful completion of the course the students will be able to comprehend the complexity and various forms and dimensions of development and environment issues and ground them in current issues and real life experiences.INTENDED AUDIENCE: UG and PG students of Humanities and Social Sciences, Sciences and Engineering.


Week-1: Introduction: Development, economic growth and sustainable development, Basic ecosystem ecology Week-2: Environmentalism, Environmental Movement, Environmentalism in the global south Week-3: Approaches to environment: Ecofeminism, Feminist political ecology, Marxism and ecology Week-4: Debates on environmental ethics: Deep ecology, Gandhi and ecology, Social ecology Week-5: Religion, environment and conservation: Religion, environment and historical roots of ecological crisis, Biodiversity conservation ethics in Buddhism and Hinduism, Christian religion in the age of ecological crisis Week-6: Natural resource management, Common property vs. private property,Livelihoods, forests, and conservation Week-7: Displacement, dispossession and development: Conservation-induced displacement, Environment impact assessment and national rehabilitation & resettlement policy, Dispossession and land acquisition Week-8: Mainstream development trajectory: Strengthening or weakening of indigenous peoples: Mining, development, and indigenous people, Competing visions of development along the Narmada, Dams, development, and resistance: case studies Week-9: Gender and development: Development theory and gendered approach to development, Gender, environment & sustainable development Week-10: Environment and climate change: Climate change interventions and policy framework, Eastern Himalayas and climate change Week-11: Belief and knowledge systems, biodiversity conservation and sustainability: Ecological knowledge, biodiversity conservation and sustainability,Traditional religion and conservation of nature in Northeast India: Case study Week-12: Local knowledge in the environment-development discourse: Indigenous knowledge, environment and development, Relevance of indigenous knowledge: case study

Taught by

Prof. Ngamjahao Kipgen



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