Climate change economics in higher education – experiences and recommendations

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University Press
Tackling human-made Climate Change is a topic of high societal relevance and became an established branch of environmental economics research. Due to the interdisciplinary structure of the topic, the integration of Climate Change into higher education programs in Economics still lags behind. Online teaching resources such as Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) might contribute significantly to overcoming this deficiency. In this paper, we describe the design of a class in “Climate Change Economics” and how we implemented it in a BA program at the International School of Economics at Tbilisi State University (ISET) in Tbilisi (Georgia). Our main focus is the integration of a MOOC on Climate Change and further online material as main teaching resources. Our main conclusion is that the MOOC, supplemented with videos on special topics, is a suitable tool to facilitate an interdisciplinary introduction into Climate Change within an academic class in Economics. The results of our evaluation show that online resources are highly motivational for students and encourage an efficient studying process. Based on our experiences, we offer recommendations for further strengthening Climate Change as a topic in higher education. We provide suggestions on how online resources such as MOOCs might contribute to that aim.
1. Andone, D. & Mihaescu, V. (2018). Blending MOOCs into Higher Education Courses - A Case Study. Presented at 2018 Learning with MOOCS Conference, Madrid, 2018. (LWMOOCS), Madrid, Spain, 2018. 2. Coelho, J., Teixeira, A., Nicolau, P., Caeiro, S. & Rocio, V. (2015). iMOOC on Climate Change: Evaluation of a Massive Open Online Learning Pilot Experience. International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 16(6), 152–173. 3. Ebner, M., Schön, S. & Braun, C. (2020). More Than a MOOC - Seven Learning and Teaching Scenarios to Use MOOCs in Higher Education and Beyond. In Yu, S. Ally, M. & Tsinakos, A. (Eds.) Emerging Technologies and Pedagogies in the Curriculum. Bridging Human and Machine: Future Education with Intelligence (pp. 75-87). Singapore: Springer. 4. Kaplan, A. M. & Haenlein, M. (2016). Higher education and the digital revolution: About MOOCs, SPOCs, social media, and the Cookie Monster. Business Horizons, 59(4), 441-450. 5. Lüken, M., Abramishvili, Z. & Pignatti, N. (2021). Implementing a class in Climate Change Economics: A case study how online resources facilitate interdisciplinarity in higher education. ISET Working Paper Series, 04-21. 6. Otto, D., Caeiro, S., Nicolau, P., Disterheft, A., Teixeira, A., Becker, S., Bollmann, A. & Sander, K. (2019). Can MOOCs empower people to critically think about climate change? A learning outcome based comparison of two MOOCs. Journal of Cleaner Production, 222, 12-21. 7. Senevirathne, M., Priyankara, H.A.C., Amaratunga, D., Haigh, R., Weerasinghe, N., Nawaratne, C. & Kaklauskas, A. (2021). A capacity needs assessment to integrate MOOC-based climate change education with the higher education institutions in Europe and developing countries in Asia: findings of the focused group survey in PCHEI under the BECK project. International Journal of Disaster Resilience in the Built Environment, forthcoming. [Ahead-of-print publication:].
Economic Education and Teaching of Economics (A2), Environmental Economics (Q5), Economics of Climate Change (Q54)
VI International Scientific Conference: "Challenges of Globalization in Economics and Business", Tbilisi, 2021, pp. 203-209