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HSC8007 : Global Health in the Anthropocene (Inactive)

  • Inactive for Year: 2023/24
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Duika Burges Watson
  • Lecturer: Dr Mark Booth, Dr Andrew Law, Professor Andy Large, Prof. Ted Schrecker
  • Owning School: FMS Graduate School
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


To consider the significance of the concept of the Anthropocene to public health in relation to food, water, land, energy and extractive industries with a particular focus on the uneven distribution of benefits and health impacts. To consider the implications of connections among environmental issues, resource consumption and health with a particular focus on low and middle income countries

Outline Of Syllabus

It is now widely argued that humanity has entered a new geological epoch, the Anthropocene, characterised by the unprecedented scale, scope and interactions of multiple human impacts in the biosphere. Climate change is the most familiar of these impacts, but it is far from the only one, and understandings of what the concept of the Anthropocene means for health policy, global health and global justice are still evolving. The module uses the Anthropocene as a 'window' into the broader issues related to the connections between environments and health, introduces students to the relevant bodies of research evidence, and offers them the opportunity to apply understandings of that evidence to specific challenges in research design, policy development and public health practice.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Structured Guided LearningLecture materials51:005:00Non-synchronous online
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture53:0015:00PIP: including interactive sessions and discussion
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion301:0030:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study501:0050:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module focuses on connections among environment, resource consumption (or resource economy) and health in specific areas such as food production, transport policy, and the health impacts of extractive industries in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Background readings and interactive lecture content will therefore be drawn from a variety of disciplines, with lectures challenging students to ‘connect the dots’ in ways that support the development of creative policy solutions. Special emphasis will be placed on the need for proactive rather than reactive policies, and on the changing role of a range of international institutions concerned with global governance for health. Some instructional design issues have to be kept flexible pending more information about class size.

Learning materials will be made available in advance of teaching activities using the VLE, and it will be expected that students have done the required preparatory work.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M1002500 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The summative assessment requires students to critically address the significance of the Anthropocene concept to global public policy and health questions. The essay demands that students think and work across disciplinary boundaries, in keeping with the complexity of the global health challenges at stake and with a recognition of the relevant institutional issues and new responsibilities of public health professionals.

Reading Lists