About this Course

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Learner Career Outcomes

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Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Flexible deadlines

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Intermediate Level

Approx. 32 hours to complete

Suggested: 4-6 hours/week...

English

Subtitles: English

Learner Career Outcomes

33%

got a tangible career benefit from this course

100% online

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.

Intermediate Level

Approx. 32 hours to complete

Suggested: 4-6 hours/week...

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

Week
1

Week 1

1 hour to complete

Introduction

1 hour to complete
1 video (Total 3 min), 8 readings
8 readings
Welcome learners!10m
Course organization10m
Grading and logistics10m
Acknowledgement10m
FAQ - General topics10m
FAQ- Time management10m
FAQ - Quizzes and assignment10m
FAQ - Certificate10m
3 hours to complete

Module 1. Introducing the basic concepts

3 hours to complete
9 videos (Total 118 min)
9 videos
The challenges faced in nexus analysis17m
Examples of “different” analyses of the nexus14m
Basic concepts of metabolic analysis12m
The bio-phsyical roots of metabolic patterns9m
Too rich to be green12m
The “intolerable” dependence on fossil fuel imports10m
Circular economy, Bioeconomy and Zero-emissions14m
Jevon’s paradox and the myth of resource efficiency as a solution for sustainability9m
1 practice exercise
Quiz 150m
Week
2

Week 2

3 hours to complete

Module 2. Acknowledging the poor quality of existing quantitative analyses

3 hours to complete
9 videos (Total 123 min)
9 videos
The fragility of numbers10m
Handling the issue of scale15m
Narratives vs. Storytelling12m
The identity in Complex Systems11m
The Concept of Holon16m
Grammars: how to keep quantitative analysis semantically open10m
Mosaic Effect: integrating quantitative analysis across different hierarchical levels17m
The Sudoku Effect – how to handle impredicativity in quantitative analysis11m
1 practice exercise
Quiz 230m
Week
3

Week 3

3 hours to complete

Module 3. The challenge of food accounting

3 hours to complete
9 videos (Total 137 min)
9 videos
An example of an integrated quantitative analysis of food metabolism: Ecuador13m
What are qualities of the produced food that cannot be considered in qualitative analysis?18m
Pre-industrial metabolic pattern18m
Technological lock-in of agriculture11m
The post harvest sector16m
Feeding the cities12m
The mission impossible of agriculture in modern times16m
Multifunctional agriculture15m
1 practice exercise
Quiz 330m
Week
4

Week 4

2 hours to complete

Module 4. The challenge of energy accounting

2 hours to complete
9 videos (Total 123 min)
9 videos
Exosomatic Metabolism11m
EROI a critical appraisal14m
Energy grammar13m
Functional and structural components12m
Quality of PES13m
Energy efficiency for policy targets12m
The problem with agro-biofuels13m
Energiewende and the problem of intermittents9m
1 practice exercise
Quiz 420m
4.6
12 ReviewsChevron Right

Top reviews from Sustainability of Social-Ecological Systems: the Nexus between Water, Energy and Food

By ADDec 12th 2019

Wonderful course about us and the environment! If you are a data loving philosopher this will be your dream (as it was for me) :) - Would love to get more lectures from this courses' teachers!

By ALMar 31st 2018

Everybody should learn this !\n\nIt will change my way of looking at sustainability as promised by Prof. Giampietro.\n\nTHX

Instructors

Image of instructor, Mario Giampietro

Mario Giampietro 

ICREA Research Professor
Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA)
5,727 Learners
1 Course
Image of instructor, Andrea Saltelli

Andrea Saltelli 

Guest researcher
Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA)
5,727 Learners
1 Course
Image of instructor, Tarik Serrano

Tarik Serrano 

Post-Doc Researcher
Institute of Environmental Science and Technology (ICTA)
5,727 Learners
1 Course

Offered by

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona logo

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

  • The course is directed toward upper-division undergraduate and graduate students from a wide variety of disciplines (environmental sciences, engineering, agricultural sciences, social sciences) as well as professionals (NGOs, think tanks) and policy makers concerned with sustainable development in both developed and developing countries.

  • You can request the certificate at any time: before, during or once you finish the course.

  • · The course name

    · The instructor's signature

    · The logo of the partner institution offering the course

    · A verification URL that allows others to check the Certificate's authenticity

    · A statement that Coursera has confirmed the identity of the learner who completed the course

  • · Academic credit from the partner institution offering the course

    · The final grade you got in the course

    · Your ID photo

    · The hours you spent working on coursework

    · A printed or mailed copy of the Course Certificate.

    Certificates are provided as downloadable PDF files, which you can print yourself. You can also share them electronically.

    Unfortunately, Coursera cannot provide course Certificates with any more information than they already include.

  • No. The certificate shows that the student has passed the course, but it is not an official qualification of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.

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