School of Environment, Resources and Development, (SERD)

ED76.18 : Integrated Natural Resources Planning and Policy  2(2-0)

The aim of the course is to provide students with an understanding of environmental, socioeconomic and policy perspectives on resource relationships, with an insight into the paradigms of conservation and sustainable development, and with a policy background to an understanding of resource use and planning issues. It also familiarizes students with modern planning tools for natural resources management and conservation, such as strategies for sustainable development & environmental impact studies.

Catalog Description:
The students on completion of this course will be able to:
    Analyze NRM issues through a policy lense and develop research-based recommendations
    Assess stakeholder requirements and deliver policy-relevant research statements
    Apply scientific results which can support the development of NRM policies


Course Outline:
I.       Introduction
1.   Overview: Policy and Planning
2.   Baseline exercise
3.   Conceptual framework

II.     Policy-relevant NRM frameworks
1.   Sustainable Livelihoods
2.   Ecosystems Resilience

III.    Theory of Science for Governance
1.   Complex/Coupled Systems
2.   Post-normal science
3.   Political economy of decisions
4.   Participatory and adaptive management

IV.   Concepts and examples of NRM policy
1.   Precautionary principle
2.   Acceptable risk
3.   3R policy
4.   Technological assessment and multi-criteria evaluation
5.   Environmental Action Plans
6.   Land Allocation Policy
7.   Sustainable Development

No designated textbook, but class notes will be provided.
1.   Daly, H. E. & Farley, J. 2010. Ecological Economics: Principles and Applications. Island Press, Washington D.C.
1.  Ecological Economics [Elsevier]
2.  Society and Natural Resources [Taylor and Francis]
3.  Natural Resources Forum [Wiley]
4.  Ecology and Society [Resilience Alliance]


1.   Blaikie P. 2006. Is Small Really Beautiful? Community-based Natural Resource Management in Malawi and Botswana. World Development, 34(11): 1942-1957.
2.   Campbell B.A. Mandondo N., Nemarundwe N. Sithole B. de Jong W., Luckert M., Matose F. 2001. Challenges to Proponents of Common Property Resource Systems: Despairing Voices from the Social Forests of Zimbabwe. World Development 29(4): 589–600.
3.   Cooke B, Kothari U. 2001. Participation: The New Tyranny? Zed Books, London.
4.   Edmunds D., Wollenberg E. 2001. A Strategic Approach to Multistakeholder Negotiations. Development and Change, 32(2): 231–253.
5.   Nightingale A. 2003. Nature–society and Development: Social, Cultural and Ecological Change in Nepal. Geoforum, 34; 525-540.
6.   Ostrom E. 1990. Governing the Commons. The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
7.   Shah T. 2009. Taming the Anarchy. Groundwater Governance in South Asia. Resources for the Future Press, Washington, DC.
8.   Carney D., Drinkwater M., Rusinow T., Wanmali S., Singh N. 1999. Livelihoods Approaches Compared. CARE, Oxfam and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Department for International Development, London
9.   Funtowicz S., Ravetz J. 2013. Post-Normal Science. The Encyclopedia of the Earth.
10. Hulme M. 2007. The Appliance of Science. The Guardian,
11. Folke C., Carpenter S., Elmqvist T., Gunderson L., Holling C.S., Walker B. 2002. Resilience and Sustainable Development: Building Adaptive Capacity in a World of Transformations. AMBIO. A Journal of the Human Environment, 31(5)437-440.
       Lecture in class room               30 hrs.
       Student presentations                6 hrs.
       Self-study and assignments     45 hrs.
Teaching Method:
1.   Lectures in classroom.
2.   Readings: students will read assigned books and articles and will summarize and discuss  according to specific assignments, with consecutive student feedback (peer-group).
3.   Group work: various assignments with students taking different roles, such as moderating, observing, providing feedback, and synthesizing.
4.   Presentation: Students will be assigned an issue related to NRM policy in their country for thorough analysis and presentation in class. The class is encouraged to ask questions, debate and discuss as necessary. The instructor may facilitate the discussion.
Grading System:
The scheme is organized as follows: Mid-term exam (open book) – 30%; Final exam (open book) – 40%, Assignment and presentation – 30%.

Grade “A” is awarded if students have a thorough understanding of the theories and analytical frameworks taught in the course, and are able to make a critical and comparative assessment of these theories and frameworks.
Grade “B” will be awarded to students who are able to use the theories and analytical frameworks adequately to assess case studies.
Grade “C” is for below-expected understanding.
Grade “D” is for students with very poor understanding of the theories and analytical frameworks taught.