ENV 746b () / 2022-2023

Conservation Ethics

Credits: 3

Spring 2023: M,W, 9:00-10:20, Marsh Rotunda

Interested students should email a short application statement (~500 words) to nathalie.sommer@yale.edu on (1) why you want to take the course, (2) career plans, and (3) any previous philosophy or ethical training by January 9, 2023

Conservation Biology is a crisis discipline, seeking to preserve biodiversity across scales. As such, the discipline is constantly faced with challenging scientific and ethical dilemmas, which requires that practitioners have a robust understanding of both ecology and environmental philosophy. This course will provide students with a foundation in applied ethics and the tools necessary to solve contemporary problems in conservation while managing the ethical realities. The first half of the semester will be focused on gaining the ethical foundation necessary to engage in conservation ethics. Weekly philosophical readings will be assigned and classes will be a mix of lecture and seminar style discussion. The second half of the course will focus on integrating these ethical frameworks with scientific practice through a series of case studies. This part of the class will be conducted primary seminar style and require short, weekly management plans informed by ethical reasoning.  No philosophical background is required and the course material has been tailored not to overlap significantly with other courses offered at Yale (i.e. Environmental Ethics, Environmental History and Values, or Environmental Justice).
Limited to 35