23 August 2013
Sustainable Development and Macroeconomics
The term “Sustainable Development” has become popular after the UN
Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro in
1992. The Brundtland Commission Report (World Commission on
Environment and Development, 1987) has made a great contribution by
emphasizing the importance of sustainable development and by giving the
most often-quoted definition: “Sustainable development is development
that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of
future generations to meet their own needs."
The starting point of theory formation is the ethical idea of sustainability.
It is based on obligations toward future generations and presupposes
Concerning specific resources and services (e.g. fresh water, the
atmosphere as a carbon sink, the wide variety of ecosystem) it is evident
that continuing growth at this rate of utilization is unsustainable.
In this course a simple world model is the basis for structuring a concept
of sustainability. Analysts with different perspectives have applied criteria
of sustainability which emphasize the ability of the economy to maintain
living standards. This course examines these criteria.
The main limit in our ecosystem is the carrying capacity for human
influences controlled by the world population and satisfaction of needs.
The limits of ecosystems have an impact on our economic system if
sustainability will be implemented.
How should mankind deal with natural resources especially with nonrenewables? How should mankind solve problems like poverty and
wastage? What are the consequences for industrial and developing
Contents of the course:
• What is Sustainability?
• The history of Sustainability
• Neoclassical Economics and Sustainable Development
• Ecological Economics and Sustainable Development
• Economic growth and Sustainable Development
• Main problems of mankind (Wastage and Poverty, Environmental
Dina Barbian, University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany
Students learn about the term “Sustainable Development” and how to
achieve sustainability in our world. They get a critical insight into
economic growth and the meaning of development. This will be
accomplished by applying economic theory and evaluating empirical
evidence how to use unlimited and limited resources in the context of
EUR 0: Students on a bilateral exchange programme do not have to pay. Freemovers are obliged to pay participation fees while tuition fees only apply to freemovers from countries outside the EU/EEA/Switzerland.