This module engages with advanced concepts in social change theory, sociology of expertise and science studies to reveal the underpinning factors driving the global biodiversity crisis. The key themes addressed in the module include the role of public debate, public policy, public opinion, public engagement, household-level practices, industry and consumer dimensions and conservation and scientific organisations. In addition, the module addresses the role of sociological research methods in enhancing monitoring and evaluation at these different levels to understand the effectiveness of different pro-conservation interventions.
The module investigates this factors through analysis of global factors, as well as detailed analyses of particularly revealing national cases such as Brazil, Colombia, the UK, USA and Denmark. To offer a positive approach to an often gloomy subject, the module demonstrates how sociological theory and research reveal the key sociocultural and economic factors underpinning the biodiversity crisis, and how those factors can best be addressed to develop a more sustainable global future.
The module will feature guest appearances from conservation practitioners, offering students an up-to-the-minute view of how sociological research fits into the global effort to enhance sustainability and conserve biodiversity.