Available courses

This course provides an introduction to the contributions of human geography to the interdisciplinary field of political ecology. Political ecology offers a framework for understanding and critically rethinking explanations of human interactions with the environment, working toward equitable and sustainable solutions. For political ecologists, environmental change and social conflict result from uneven access to resources, and hence from power relations. Human geographers contribute concepts of scale, space, place, spatial interactions, and situated knowledge.  We will integrate concepts from both fields to study human-environment interactions, and to analyze the production of knowledge and discourses about environmental problems.

Why do storms, earthquakes, and other hazards result in disastrous loss of life in some places, and only minor losses in others? In this course we will study human geographies of population, economic development, politics, and culture to explain the diverse outcomes from biophysical hazards. We will compare hazard geographies at the global, regional, and local scales using diverse approaches, including quantitative analysis, geographic information systems (GIS), and comparative case studies. We will examine how geographic analysis and technologies are used in disaster planning and response. We will practice applying human geography theory and methods to hazards research through practical exercises, exams, and research projects.

Introduction to health geography and geographic information systems for family medicine residents and medical students in Rhode Island.