Syllabus for Sustainable Development: Worldviews and Visions - a Seminar Series

Hållbar utveckling - synsätt och visioner - en seminarieserie


  • 5 credits
  • Course code: 1MV552
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Sustainable Development A1N
  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (3), Pass with credit (4), Pass with distinction (5)
  • Established: 2016-03-10
  • Established by:
  • Revised: 2020-11-03
  • Revised by: The Faculty Board of Science and Technology
  • Applies from: week 27, 2021
  • Entry requirements: A Bachelor's degree of at least 180 credits. English language proficiency that corresponds to English studies at upper secondary (high school) level in Sweden ("English 6").
  • Responsible department: Department of Earth Sciences

Learning outcomes

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • critically analyse the conceptual and practical dimensions of sustainable development at local, regional and global level;
  • critically evaluate ethical questions with relevance for sustainable development;
  • critically relate to and value different actors' visions of a sustainable future.


The course deals with the concept of sustainable development from a historical perspective, by studying how ideologies and views in society have shaped the sustainability discussion. The basic assumptions about how man, nature, development, technology and economy are interrelated are analysed by applying discourse analysis. The course uses different theories and case studies to analyse different interpretations of the normative and practical dimensions of development; at local, regional and global level. The course gives the student the opportunity to participate in ethical and philosophical discussions on sustainability issues.


The teaching consists of lectures, seminars and workshops. The lectures are given by guest lecturers from various academic disciplines and relevant areas of society. Ample opportunities are provided for active student participation and critical reflection. Participation in seminars and workshops is compulsory. Non-compulsory study visits or equivalent may occur.


The student is examined through written preparation for (1 credit) and active participation in seminars and workshops (1 credit),
and through written documentation (2.5 credits) and oral presentation (0.5 credits) of a project.

If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the University's disability coordinator.

Reading list

Reading list

Applies from: week 27, 2021

Some titles may be available electronically through the University library.

Common course book

The course has the following course book:

  • McCloskey, Deirdre N.; Ziliak, Stephen Thomas Economical writing : thirty-five rules for clear and persuasive prose

    Third edition.: Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2019

    Find in the library


Elective book

Students will read one of the following Climate-Fiction anthologies

  • Adams, John Joseph Loosed upon the world : the Saga anthology of climate fiction

    First Saga Press paperback edition.: New York: Saga Press, 2015

    Find in the library

  • Andrew, Jason de Vries, Jetse Shine : an anthology of near-future, optimistic Science Fiction

    Oxford: Solaris, 2010

    Find in the library

  • Atwood, Margaret; McKibben, Bill Martin, Mark I'm with the bears : [short stories from a damaged planet]

    London: Verso, 2011

    Find in the library

  • Robinson, Kim Stanley. Future primitive : the new Ecotopias

    1st trade paperback ed.: New York: TOR, [1997], ©1994

    Find in the library

  • Wagner, Phoebe; Wieland, Brontë Christopher Sunvault : stories of solarpunk and eco-speculation

    Nashville, Tennessee: Upper Rubber Boot Books, [2017]

    Find in the library