Course Title: Climate Change Responses

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Climate Change Responses

Credit Points: 12


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies

Face-to-Face or Internet

Sem 1 2016,
Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019,
Sem 1 2020

Course Coordinator: Dr Lauren Rickards

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2328

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

As climate change proceeds, we need to think critically about how we are, and should be, responding. In this course you will gain integrated, critical knowledge of climate change responses in theory and practice. Looking at responses from the individual to institutional to international level, you will explore the social, cultural, political and psychological aspects of such responses and the practical challenges they pose. You will gain a sophisticated understanding of how responses including adaptation, mitigation, climate-smart development, resilience thinking and carbon sequestration are shaped by existing contexts and demand new capabilities.

The course focuses squarely on the “human dimensions” of climate change, including the role of science in policy. Drawing on case studies from around the world, you will be required to consider how climate change is understood and framed differently by diverse groups of people and relates to other pressing challenges such as urbanisation. In particular, you will explore the conceptual and practical issues climate change poses to urban dwellers and planners, including the complex issues of vulnerability, adaptive capacity, justice and ethics that incremental and transformational responses generate. You will develop an understanding of the barriers to ideal climate change responses and possible strategies for addressing them.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

In this course you will develop the following program learning outcomes:
• Critically analyse, synthesise and reflect on recent trends and scholarly analysis of the effects and consequences of urbanisation internationally, including the interplay of ecological, economic, political, social and cultural factors
• Apply the specialist knowledge and technical skills required to understand particular contexts and prepare appropriate solutions to a range of environmental and urban challenges
• Clearly communicate complex research findings, proposals and plans to diverse audiences.

Upon successful completion of this course you will be able to:
• Knowledgeably discuss the main practical, philosophical and political challenges posed by climate change and the role of cultural and context-specific factors
• Identify a suite of possible climate change responses and their relationship, and critically assess their social, economic and environmental advantages and disadvantages
• Compare and critically assess climate change responses from around the world
• Recommend factors to consider in designing or assessing any climate change response.

Overview of Learning Activities

Learning activities will involve lectures, tutorial discussions and online interactions.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.
Suitable academic and non-academic references will be recommended or provided.

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program learning outcomes.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.
If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Disability Liaison Unit if you would like to find out more.
Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies, procedures and instructions which are available for review online: