Overpopulation: Resource Depletion and Human Innovation
Recognise the impact of overpopulation on natural resources
Studies show that the world population is growing at a steady rate, increasing by tens of millions every year. With unsustainable growth in the human population, scarce resources could be consumed, endangered flora and fauna may go extinct, and carbon emissions could spiral out of control.
On this four-week course from the Adam Smith Centre, you’ll explore the depletion of resources in relation to overpopulation. You’ll study various perspectives on resource management and the importance of human innovation in cultivating a sustainable future.
Explore Malthusian theory and Thomas Malthus’s influence on environmentalism
Thomas Malthus was an English economist best known for Malthusian theory – an economic pessimist perspective on resource management and population growth.
On this course, you’ll study Malthusian theory in-depth and analyse its key points to understand the impact Malthus had on environmental discourse.
Discover Julian Simon’s work and other fascinating environmental perspectives
Another notable contributor to economic and environmental discourse is Julian Simon.
You’ll tackle Simon’s theories of environmental optimism to understand the role that human innovation can play in sustainability. At the end of the course, you’ll have the knowledge to compare and contrast Malthusian and Simonian approaches in the context of today’s world.
Learn how to measure and manage resource usage
An essential facet of environmental management is the understanding of how resources are being used and depleted.
With the guidance of the experts at the Adam Smith Centre, you’ll learn to use Julian Simon’s Simon Abundance Index and a unique framework jointly developed by Dr. Marian Tupy and Dr. Gale Pooley, which measure the different degrees of resource abundance.
Learning on this course
On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.
What will you achieve?
By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...
- Explain the influence of Thomas Malthus and Malthusian principles in environmental discourse
- Explore the distinctive perspective of economist Julian Simon
- Compare Malthusian and Simonian approaches to environmental challenges
- Calculate resource abundance using the Tupy-Pooley framework and Simon Abundance Index
- Present a rational case for environmental optimism
Who is the course for?
This course is designed for professionals in sustainability and public policy, or those involved in governance.
It will also be of interest for young adult learners in fields of study such as environmentalism, economics, business or political science.
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