NIFK18003U Thematic Course: Interdisciplinary Land Use and Natural Resource Management
MSc Programme in Environment and Development
Land use and natural resource management issues in developing countries are best approached through an interdisciplinary lens. Hence, the central theme of the course is learning and applying methods and theoretical approaches rooted in both natural and social science traditions in problem-oriented field work in a developing country in collaboration with local counterparts. In working with students from other disciplines, students are given opportunity to apply their own disciplinary skills in order to address the identified topics/questions within land use, rural development and natural resource management. Collaboration with students from partner universities will ensure exposure to working in an inter-cultural environment.
The course includes training in analysing problems and
developing a research/project synopsis; planning and conducting
field work; selection and application of data collection methods
(e.g. questionnaire design, interview techniques, bio-physical
sampling methods, PRA techniques); data recording and processing;
and writing reports. This will allow students to participate
effectively in interdisciplinary assignments in developing
countries, and serve as a basis for understanding strengths and
weaknesses of each student’s own discipline, including comparative
advantages of academic disciplines relevant to rural livelihoods
and natural resource management in developing countries.
The course is a collaboration between Department of Food and Resource Economics at UCPH, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences at UCPH, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management at UCPH, Department of Anthropology at UCPH and Department of People and Technology at RUC. The consortium has carried out interdisciplinary field courses in collaboration with university counterparts in Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, Kenya, South Africa, Swaziland and Botswana since 1998. The course attracts students from a wide range of study programmes and during the field work the students will work together with students from the partner universities.
For logistical and planning purposes, students must enroll by the end of October. Check the specific date of enrollment at the course homepage: www.sluse.dk where you can also find the form for enrollment. In addition to this enrollment, students must also register the course as normally done.
The course offers practical experience in selecting, applying and evaluating field methods for natural resource management in an interdisciplinary perspective. After completing the course the students should be able to:
- Describe and show overview of key field data collection methods (both natural and social science methods)
- Describe central concepts and terms within development and natural resource management
- Integrate own disciplinary knowledge, skills and competences into interdisciplinary groups tasked with complex, interdisciplinary problems
- Select relevant methods and construct a research plan for investigating a real-life natural resource “problem” (natural resource management issue)
- Apply selected methods in the field and collect empirical data
- Analyse and report on collected field data
- Reflect on research plan and reliability of collected data
- Generalize and reflect on results observed/obtained at the case level to broader issues of sustainability, livelihood, natural resource management and development
The course curriculum willl be made available in Absalon. It consists of i) texts on theoretical and analytical frameworks from the natural and social sciences of relevance to natural resource management, ii) literature on natural and social science methods, and iii)literature on interdisciplinarity and group work. The students will also read texts of relevance to the research problem being studied and the country/location where the field work takes place.
- Practical exercises
- Field Work
- Project work
Students will receive feedback from lecturers and fellow students to the draft synopsis. Intensive feedback will also be given by lecturers during the data collection in the field. During report writing, there will also be feedback to the data analysis and draft versions of chapters in the report.
For logistical and planning purposes, students must enroll to this course by end of October. Check the specific date of enrollment at the course homepage: www.sluse.dk where you can also find the form for enrollment. In addition to this enrollment, students must also register the course at KUnet.
- 15 ECTS
- Type of assessment
- Oral examination, 60-90 minutesWritten assignmentOral group examination in synopsis, field report and course curriculum, 60-90 minutes, depending on no. of members of group. No preparation time. The examiners will ask students individual questions to allow individual assessment.
Weight: Field report: 50% Oral exam: 50%. Individual grades to students.
- Exam registration requirements
Participation in field trip. Active contribution to group work and group report.
- All aids allowed
- Marking scale
- 7-point grading scale
- Censorship form
- External censorship
Individual oral reexam. The oral exam lasts 20 minutes. No time for preparation. The oral exam counts 100%.
If the student does not fulfil the exam registration requirements for the ordinary exam, students must prepare an individual report of maximum 15 pages. The report must be submitted three weeks before the reexam.
Criteria for exam assesment
Please refer to the learning outcomes