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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - IDS6235
Tracking Number - 4738

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2013-08-05
Campus: Tampa
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only):
Comments: to GC 5/6/13 for Global Sust. Changes. Approved. Cleared concurrence. To SCNS 227/31/13. Sub as 6233. Apprd as 6235 eff 8/1/13

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2013-04-17
  2. Department:
  3. College: CS
  4. Budget Account Number: 390500
  5. Contact Person: Ali Yalcin
  6. Phone: 9745397
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: IDS
  9. Number: 6235
  10. Full Title: Economics and Finance for Sustainability
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: C - Class Lecture (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: N
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?: N
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): Econ & Fin for Sustainability
  19. Course Online?: B - Face-to-face and online (separate sections)
  20. Percentage Online: 0
  21. Grading Option: -
  22. Prerequisites:
  23. Corequisites:
  24. Course Description: The course provides sustainability practitioners an overview of how economics and finance enhance sustainability. The emphasis is on environmental economics and innovative finance; students learn how scarce natural resources can be optimally allocated

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Needed to compete with national trends
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? This new course is part of a systematic redesign of the degree requirements for the MA in Global Sustainability now housed in the new College of Global Sustainability. The revisions to the degree emerge from our analysis of other competitive programs across the country, our assessment of the core competencies of the College and our analysis of skills desired by employers for positions related to sustainability and green economy. The proposed revisions are academically rigorous and position our degree and our students for success in the academic and workplace market. After synthesizing this research, we have designed four new core courses for the MA degree. The four core courses are; Concepts and Principles of Sustainability, Economics and Finance for Sustainability, Systems Thinking: The key to sustainability, and Communicating the Value of Sustainability. In addition, we have strengthened our Water Concentration with a new required course titled Sustainable Water Resource Management.

    The demand for this course will be the same as the demand for the degree since this course is required for all students enrolled in the degree program. We are currently receiving 60-80 applications per year without any systematic recruiting effort. Our current enrollment is around 35 students per academic year.

    With the increasing focus on sustainability in higher education, we believe that these courses may serve as electives to other programs, especially those housed in the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Public Health and Business.

  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? No
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.)
  29. Objectives: Students will

    1. Understand how green economics differs from traditional economic theory

    2. Analyze economic principles, empirical and theoretical, toward natural resource allocation

    3. Study how governmental policy impacts global sustainability

    4. Examine the concepts of sustainable investment and assess its situational feasibility

  30. Learning Outcomes: After completing this course, the students should be able to:

    1. Identify how a green economy differs from traditional economic theory

    2. Perform a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis on a sustainable project

    3. Sort and decide what tools are available for funding green investments

    4. Measure economic impact via sustainability

    5. Develop a sustainable project proposal

  31. Major Topics: 1. Principals of a Green Economy – Exploring the 6 pillars of a green economy

    a. Renewable energies

    b. Green Buildings

    c. Clean Transportation

    d. Water Management

    e. Waste Management

    f. Land Management

    2. Traditional vs. Green Economies.

    a. Defining a dual approach to economics.

    b. Designing a new economic paradigm.

    3. Green economy as a system. Inputs and outputs of an economy. Resource Supply and Scarcity – How a healthy environment supplies natural resources and how to monitor scarcity

    a. Ecosystem Structure and Processes

    b. Ecosystem Functions

    c. Ecosystem Services

    d. Scarcity and Classification of Environmental Resources

    e. Flow Resource Supply

    f. Fund Resource Supply

    g. Scarcity Viewpoints or Philosophies

    h. Measuring Resource Scarcity

    4. Measurements: traditional vs. green economies

    a. Environmental issues

    b. Policy interventions

    c. Well-being and equity

    5. Economic Efficiency – Allocating natural resources to economic production and consumption

    a. Basic Model of an Economy

    b. Production Efficiency

    c. Consumption Efficiency

    d. Choice Theory

    e. Pareto-Efficiency and the Market

    6. Market Failure and Inefficiency

    a. Inefficient allocation of goods and services

    b. Nonexclusiveness

    c. Nonrivalry

    d. Congestible Goods

    e. Monopoly

    f. Externalities

    7. Public Goods and Common Property

    a. Characteristics of goods – Excludable and Rival in Consumption

    b. Types of goods

    i. Private Goods

    ii. Artificial Scarce Goods

    iii. Common Property Resources

    iv. Public Goods

    c. Free rider problem

    d. Efficient levels of production

    e. Regulation

    8. Cost-Benefit Analysis

    a. Reasons for Using CBA

    b. “With” and “Without” Principle

    c. Categories of Costs and Benefits

    d. General Valuation Concepts

    e. Market and Nonmarket Valuation Techniques

    f. CBA Choice Criteria

    g. Application of CBA

    h. Limitations of CBA

    9. Policy Instruments to Impact a Green Economy

    a. Regulations

    b. Taxes

    c. Subsidies

    i. Single Sector

    ii. Multiple Sector

    iii. Factor of production

    iv. Perverse subsidies

    10. Financial Instruments

    a. Land Trusts

    b. Emissions Trading

    c. Municipal bonds

    d. Energy savings as collateral

    11. Sustainability Return on Investment (S-ROI)

    a. Life-Cycle Cost Analysis

    b. Calculating triple bottom line (People, Planet, Profits)

    c. Decision metrics

    i. Net Present Value

    ii. Return on Investment

    iii. Discounted payback period

    iv. Internal rate of return

    v. Cost to Benefit Ratio

    d. SROI Methodology

    12. Project Finance and Funding Alternatives

    a. Definitions of Project Finance

    b. Definition of Non-Recourse Financing

    c. Corporate Financing Versus Project Financing

    d. Project Suitability and Qualification

    e. Project Participants and Roles

    f. Allocation of Risk Among Participants

    g. Construction Period Risks

    h. Operational Period Risks

    i. Contractual Agreements

    j. Cash Flow from Revenues to Net Income

    k. Sources and Forms of Debt and Equity

    l. Tax-Enhanced Transactions

    m. Unique Opportunities for Sustainable Projects

    n. Grants and Other Sources of External Funding

    13. Public-Private Partnerships (P3)

    a. Types of P3 Projects

    b. Reasons for Adopting a P3 Approach

    c. Partnership Participants and Roles

    d. Contract Structures and Risk Allocation

    e. Applications in Transportation

    f. Applications in Water Infrastructure

    g. Applications in Energy and Telecommunications

    h. Applications in Environmental Services

    i. Procurement and Negotiation Process

    j. Tariffs, Rates, and Revenues

    k. Incorporating Sustainability in P3 Projects

    l. Public Policy Concerns and Considerations

  32. Textbooks: Environmental & Natural Resources Economics (9th Edition), Tom Tientenberg and Lynne Lewis
  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases:

  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: There will be 2 exams for the course, one mid-term and one final, which are both closed book and both are comprehensive.

    There will be one graded project assignment (real-world application project).

    The application project is intended to foster critical, creative, and practical thinking, to develop effective interpersonal and communication skills needed to move a project towards implementation, and to offer a “hands-on” opportunity for developing organizational, project management and budgeting skills. Students will become familiar with the process of economic modeling, financial planning, proposal writing, effective presentation and defense of proposal ideas, and assessment of case studies. Designing sustainable places, practices, institutions, and technologies for a resource-constrained world is the primary focus of this project. Students will combine concepts discussed in lecture with lessons learned from readings and real-world examples to develop a project proposal that addresses a particular sustainability issue. At a minimum, the submission should utilize a written proposal (5-10 pages) as well as a presentation that illustrates the challenge and the proposed solution. The hypothetical project can be set in either a business or not-for-profit arena; in the developed or developing world. These are individual projects, not to be done in groups.

    All testing is completed via CMS. Class participation with regard to class discussions and class attendance is expected, but not graded. Test material will be taken from lectures, class discussions, and assigned readings. The instructors reserve the right to assign grades of + or - at their discretion per USF policies. The breakdown of grading is as follows:

    Mid-Term Exam: 25%

    Final Exam: 50%

    Application Project: 25%

    The following grading scale will be used

    90 to 100% = A

    80 to 89% = B

    70 to 79% = C

    60 to 69% = D

    Below 50% = F

    Grades will be posted on through the course management software. There is no other extra credit available.

  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: Week 1

    Introduction to Economics and the Principals of a Green Economy – Exploring the 6 pillars of a green economy

    Tietenberg Chapter 1.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 2 Traditional vs. Green Economies. Defining a dual approach to economics. Designing a new economic paradigm. Begin project assignments.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 3 Green economy as a system. Inputs and outputs of an economy. Resource Supply and Scarcity.

    Tietenberg Chapter 6.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 4 Measurements: traditional vs. green economies

    Tietenberg Chapter 4.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 5 Economic Efficiency. Allocating economic production and consumption

    Tietenberg Chapters 5 and 20.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 6 Mid-Term Exam

    Week 7 Market Failure and Inefficiency. Public Goods and Common Property

    Tietenberg Chapter 2.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 8 Cost-Benefit Analysis

    Tietenberg Chapter 3.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 9 Policy Instruments to Impact a Green Economy

    Tietenberg Chapters 19 and 22.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 10 Financial Instruments. Sustainability Return on Investment (S-ROI)

    Tietenberg Chapter 20.

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 11 Project Finance and Funding Alternatives

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 12 Public-Private Partnerships

    Tietenberg Chapter 22

    Other assigned articles.

    Week 13 Project discussions.

    Application Project Due.

    Week 14 Final Exam (comprehensive)

  36. Attendance Policy: Course Attendance at First Class Meeting – Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation – Registration - 4.0101,

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: All exams and assignments are to be completed within the time frame provided in the syllabus. If there are anticipated or unanticipated problems, the student needs to email the instructor ahead of time and explain the reason to be considered for make-up. Such situations will be handled by the instructor on a case by case basis.

    See also the University Policy on Academic Integrity at

  38. Program This Course Supports: MA in Global Sustainability
  39. Course Concurrence Information:

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or