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Learner Reviews & Feedback for The Age of Sustainable Development by Columbia University

2,451 ratings
865 reviews

About the Course

The Age of Sustainable Development" gives students an understanding of the key challenges and pathways to sustainable development - that is, economic development that is also socially inclusive and environmentally sustainable....

Top reviews

Jun 1, 2020

Very informative and detailed. Prof. Sachs covers all aspects of sustainable development in detail. Though the course was designed in 2013 hence does not cover the latest development to SDGs to date.

May 18, 2017

This course was perfect for those wanting to explore the world of development, broad enough to include all interlinked themes, with sufficient reading materials to spark one's specializing interests.

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51 - 75 of 844 Reviews for The Age of Sustainable Development

By Katie C

Sep 26, 2020

This course has filled in the gaps and enhanced my national and global knowledge of Climate Change Policies and Governance or lack of action on the part of the politicians which has become evidentially clear during the global pandemic. My work involves the planning and installation of green transport solutions including EV’s, energy efficient chargepoints and Mobility as a Service. I was keen to learn more than transport and this has opened up many gateways and areas of analysis that I wasn’t aware of before. The intrinsic links between our natural world, the human species and climate change are covered in this course in a manageable way if your holding down a full time job. Thank you Dr Sachs, what an epic course. Katie - Oxford, UK

By Jorge S S

Oct 2, 2016

El curso que acabo de culminar me es de gran importancia porque me permite ampliar y reforzar el tema del Desarrollo Sostenible. Soy, peruano, investigador social, columnista y autor de cuatro libros y voy por el quinto que se titulará 'Minería y Desarrollo Sostenible' (Enero 2017) en el cual aludiré a la propuesta del profesor Sachs (Convergencia y Gobernanza) la del Pnuma (Desacoplar y la Economía Verde) y las mías propias, que adelanto que junto con el tema de la Gobernanza se hace imprescindible un quinto soporte para el Desarrollo Sostenible: la decisión y compromiso de la comunidad con el Desarrollo Sostenible. Si no existe esta decisión y compromiso, el Desarrollo Sostenible no será viable. Gracias prof. Sachs y colaboradores.

By Paola J

Mar 22, 2021

This was an amazing course that covered all the basic for a modern understanding on what Sustainable Development means. It didn't shy away from admitting that the topic is indeed a highly complex one, instead, it embraced it and drove right into the why's and what's and how's of that complexity. It included every major aspect of Sustainable Development, mentioned the key ideas around it, and kept it all in very simple and concise terms. This is a great course for anyone who has a basic understanding of sustainability, and who wishes to deepen their knowledge 10-fold in the short span of 13 weeks.

Can't recommend it enough. A truly wonderful course.

By kaimeng h

Apr 2, 2020

I enjoyed this course, Professor Sachs is a great teacher, I like the way he repeats key themes and concepts between the lessons. He made the topics sound simpler. I just wish there are more demos or exercises to practice some of the calculations, and also I had great difficulty finding the right tables/graphs at WHO website, from China, the slow network/firewall made it so hard to get to the right data. I tried both both app and the desktop experience, it both had problems and slowed me down a lot. I believe the words/instructions for some questions should be improved, made more clear. Links should direct more easily to the right table/graph.

By Vijay G

Oct 3, 2020

I was working in IT Enabled Services as operations Manager and resigned my job to purseu career in Renewable Energy and started Solar ENergy System Installation work and completed Solar and Renewable Energy courses. I want to play my role and be part of sustainable development and this course is a highlight. Thanks a lot for arranging this course. In real time we couldn't afford to do this course and that to being a virtual student of Prof. Jeffrey Sachs is amazing and this is real time motivation to know about his works which is increasing my interest to learn more about sustainable development. Thanks a lot.

By Syed M S

Apr 28, 2018

I think this course is the best because it clears most of the doubts that arises in daily life and gives a lot of knowledge to improve our skills. I also have a complaint regarding quizzes, some of the questions asked have websites that are to be opened to answer those questions, but those pages are are not opening, because of which I lost many marks. Otherwise I am sure I would have got more marks. Any way I am really glad to pursue this courses and one of the finest professors of these times Prof. Jeffery Sachs taught me. I request you to please send my Certificate for this course. Thank you coursera.

By Mary U

Dec 16, 2020

I really enjoyed following this course, thank you for providing such a great overview of what sustainable development Is and providing the economic theories about how It all works. Thank you for being Inclusive and allowing anyone with minimal economics backgrounds and knowledge to follow. This course has been very eye-opening and Inspiring. While maybe I don't personally agree 100% with every opinion, I appreciate the reasoning and theories backing up Professor Sach's arguments. Fantastic course and I am sure to be referring to and thinking of the ideas through my daily life.

By vhithyaa S

Dec 22, 2015

I've only recently been going in depth into issues like harming the environment, poverty and solutions to those problems that don't affect us in bad ways and this course has helped deepen my understanding of the way everything works tremendously. The professor is a wonderful speaker and there isn't one boring minute. Each lesson is very well thought out and i would recommend this to anyone and everyone seeking to better understand how the connections in this modern world work and affect each other and effects on the environment if we keep on this destructive path of ours.

By Ricardo V F

Mar 19, 2017

By far, one of the best courses I've taken at Coursera. It opened my eyes to the phenomena around us, and what the co-relation between all the factors in our lives amounts to the changes we've induced to the planet. It has made me rethink my own life, my work, and the urgency I have as volunteer member of a Disaster Risk Reduction to multiply this information to as much persons as I can. Dr. Sachs explains every detail and definition with such simplicity that it makes it possible for anybody to understand the severity of the challenges were faced at this moment in time.

By Lucy J

Aug 10, 2017

One of the few courses I have taken that presents a detailed overview of the "super wicked" problem of balancing growth and development with curbing climate change. So many people focus on the role of governments and business, whilst this gives individuals history and hope. Sachs finishes by quoting JFK and demonstrating how the power of ideas to change the world and throwing down the guantlet for us all to pick up of taking action to save our precious planet and preserve our children's future. We all have to act, taking this course is an excellent start.

By SOW,Amadou

Apr 14, 2018

Simply one of the best courses I have had so far. The approach used is almost playful, it's like going back in time since the invention of the steam engine and until now ... This was also for me, an excellent opportunity in combine this course and literature review related to my Doctorat in Business Administration ... I hope that Prof Sachs, in the coming years will be able to update this course, with the latest developments on SGDs and other major development agendas, like ADB's 5 five, AU agenda agenda 2063 ... Excellent course that I highly recommend!

By kartik k

Jul 29, 2020

Brilliant and insightful, this course is an eye-opener to the concept of sustainable development and associated domains. Prof.Sachs masterfully navigates through this course not only imparting knowledge and sharing his wisdom but inspiring and motivating action towards sustainable development. He wades through complicated topics in a way that is simple for novices to understand. I count myself extremely fortunate to have been a student of this course and definitely recommend it to anyone with even the slightest interest in sustainability

By Valeriya Y

Jun 30, 2020

This course of The Age of Sustainable Development was very interesting. I have found out a lot of new economic worldwide facts, statistics data, and info about a huge work done by the UN for the World development! It was amazing time of learning. Big thanks to Professor Jeffrey Sachs, his interesting way of reading lectures with personal examples based on his own experiences is highly appreciated. Thank you very much for the opportunity to improve the knowledge for free! All the best to all who took part in creation of this course!

By Maria K

Jan 27, 2018

This course has been covering a wide range of topics and went into appropriate depth on each of them, introducing the student to a wide range of concepts relating to Sustainable Development. Prof. Sachs is explaining all concepts understandably and in an interesting way, his enthusiasm is very contractible and motivates to read and research more on the topic. I also liked that he incorporated his own opinions, but did discuss other reasonings as well. All in all this has been a very informative and well-organised online course!

By preeti

Feb 22, 2016

Course provided me great insight regarding different dimension of development and what is the appropriate definition of 'development'. The least developed countries of today will achieve the status of 'most developed countries' however, the cost that environment has paid for the present 'most developed countries' need to be taken care of with a balanced approach. The shackles of poverty can only be removed by social inclusion and creating good public policy. This course has added a new perspective about sustainable development.

By Jason S

Sep 30, 2015

Overall, the course is outstanding, bringing together diverse threads of Global Health, Climate Change, Economics, International Politics/Relations and more into a cohesive explanation of our current world challenges standing in the way of living together on this planet for a long time to come without our current inequalities and threats to life itself. I've recommended it to all my friends and colleagues and I recommend it to anyone who reads my review. It's a time investment, but well worth every second I spent.

By Darryll M

Oct 17, 2016

I think Prof Sachs is an excellent lecturer and his course was both broad and deep enough to give me the grounding I want in sustainability. I love the fact that throughout the course he is so professional yet at the end he gets choked up with passion about the future of the planet. It will be my privilege to pass on what I have learnt.

I would suggest that he takes a more than occasional swig of water so that the vocal chords remain in good condition to talk without coughing. All up - excellent grade from me!!

By Ricardo R C

May 21, 2018

Excellent introduction to sustainable development! My girlfriend and I have always been interested in sustainability, but despite our good intentions we really had no clear idea of the various dimensions of this complex topic. Professor Sachs outlines all the topics very clearly and concisely, in a way that is very accessible to anyone. I highly recommend this course for anyone with a general interest in sustainable development, and even more so for anyone with a background in social or physical sciences.

By Linda B

Sep 26, 2016

This was an amazing course on improving the planet world wide by improving core standards for all people, such as safe drinking water, health care, maternal and baby care, education, etc. If countries that are meeting these core standards, contribute to the countries where people live in extreme poverty, then everyone on the planet will have a life that meets the basic standards and helps these poorer countries become sustainable themselves. The whole world benefits from every country being sustainable.

By Djordje S

May 15, 2017

Fantastic course. Prof. Sasch is probably one of the best thinkers in the world nowadays. His ideas make this place better. Simultaneously with the course I read the book with the same title. Such approach tremendously improved my understanding of the subject. The book is like encyclopaedia with lot of data and figures.

Thank you Professor very much and please keep going and working on these life important issues.

I hope that we will have opportunity to attend another Sasch’s course very soon.


By Abdul Q

Jun 13, 2020

This is one of the best course on Coursera about Sustainable Development , which gives you knowledge from the scratches and understanding the importance of SD and its history, events, dynamics and role of government, individuals and different aspects. Moreover, Prof. Sachs has breadth and depth of knowledge and first hand experience of working with UN and being the custodian of MDGs &SDGs, which make it very relevant to learn from him. Thank you Prof. Sachs for your great work and contribution.

By Paul B

Nov 30, 2015

The Age of Sustainable Development is by far the most informative course I have encountered on the complex and pertinent subject of sustainable development. Professor Sachs takes the time to fully explore many of the key themes that form the foundations of sustainable development and simplifies sophisticated topics into digestible pieces of insight. This course is a must for anyone involved in sustainable development and should be prescribed viewing for politicians, CEOs and future leaders.

By Tereza Z

Sep 22, 2019

The course itself is amazing! However, the tests are outdated - many of the links don't work anymore and the data can't be found, so in many instances it was necessary to guess the answer of the data/graph analysis questions. It would be great if this could be improved.

I would definitely recommend the course to anyone (not just those interested in sustainability) because the course introduces all the main aspects in a very clear and interesting manner. Thank you for creating this!

By Ritu Y

Feb 26, 2017

Having always had a keen interest in issues pertaining to the MDGs and the SDGs, I thought the course would give me greater insight into problems and solutions therein impacting our world today and was not deceived by the content. I particularly appreciate Professor Sachs personal interpretations and opinions on certain issues; Coming from him, issues have become more credible for me.

Highly recommend the topics to not only course takers but anyone interested in the Earth's health.

By Marthe v L

Sep 18, 2015

Jeffrey Sachs is a great professor who talks in a very clear and concise way. The terminology and even the math parts are all really understandable. The exercises are really useful because they introduce you to a range of tools on the web such as World Bank data and the Human Development Index, AND teaches you how to use it. This course helps you to get a really well-rounded, complete picture of what Sustainable Development contains and looks at it from multiple perspectives.