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The Gateway Course: Facets of Sustainability (IDS 2154)

Facets of Sustainability serves as the gateway course for students majoring or minoring in Sustainability Studies. The course illuminates the foundations of sustainability studies while introducing students to its expansive scope.  It is offered every Fall semester.

Sustainability is most commonly defined as meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It is characterized by three overarching concerns: maintaining ecological and environmental health; creating economic welfare; and ensuring social justice. This course introduces students to the theory, principles, and practices of sustainability as approached through a variety of topical concerns and academic fields. It features a series of guest lectures by community leaders some of UF’s leading scholars.

Course Objectives

Is the earth headed for ecological collapse, and if so, what can be done to avert catastrophe? How can humanity’s growing needs be met without mortgaging the future? Are there economically viable ways to ensure an equitable and prosperous life for the citizens of the planet? Is a sustainable world primarily to be achieved through green design and technology, or by changing consciousness and behavior? What are the characteristics of sustainable lives and businesses, and what practical means are at our disposal to achieve these goals? In this course, students will develop answers to such questions by critically and creatively engaging with texts and lecturers, through weekly written assignments, and through collaborative, team-based projects.