Change search
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Lecturers' perspectives on how introductory economic courses address sustainability
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Stockholm Resilience Centre.
2015 (English)In: International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education, ISSN 1467-6370, E-ISSN 1758-6739, Vol. 16, no 1, 44-56 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose - The purpose of this article is to explore sustainability commitments' potential implications for the curriculum of introductory economics courses. Universities have signed the Talloires Declaration, committing themselves to promoting students' environmental literacy and ecological citizenship, thereby creating pressure to integrate sustainability across the curriculum. Design/methodology/approach - A case study approach involving qualitative research methods and the three largest public universities in British Columbia, Canada, was used. As one component of a larger study, 11 of the 19 economists who delivered the course over the study period were interviewed. The theoretical framework was informed by ecological economics scholarship on how mainstream economic thought represents environment-economy linkages. Findings - Findings suggest that universities' sustainability commitments have not influenced principles of economics curriculum. Sustainability is not salient to lecturers; prospects that mainstream economics departments will integrate sustainability into curriculum in a timely manner without external pressure appear limited. Practical implications - While institutions often enthusiastically report on courses that contribute to students' ecological literacy, identifying curriculum that may confound student understanding of sustainability receives less emphasis. Introductory economics courses appear to merit scrutiny from this perspective. Originality/value - About 40 per cent of North American university students take an introductory economics course, relatively few take more advanced economics courses. This course, thus, teaches many students economic theory and the economics profession's approach to evaluating public policy, and has potential to contribute to knowledge of sustainability. Few studies examine how undergraduate economics curriculum addresses sustainability.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 16, no 1, 44-56 p.
Keyword [en]
Ecological economics, Sustainability, Curriculum, Introductory economics, Lecturers, Talloires declaration
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences Educational Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-115463DOI: 10.1108/IJSHE-03-2013-0020ISI: 000349644100005OAI: diva2:798425


Available from: 2015-03-26 Created: 2015-03-24 Last updated: 2015-03-26Bibliographically approved

Open Access in DiVA

No full text

Other links

Publisher's full text
By organisation
Stockholm Resilience Centre
In the same journal
International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education
Earth and Related Environmental SciencesEducational Sciences

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

Altmetric score

Total: 17 hits
ReferencesLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link