A short summer course held at the University of Basilicata in Matera, Italy, designed to provide students with practical skills in using unmanned aerial systems for ecological and eco-hydrological modeling and monitoring.
This course explores the economic, environmental, and social challenges of meeting growing food needs in sub-Saharan Africa. The region today has the lowest crop yields, the highest percentage of hungry people, and the highest population growth rates, and relies heavily on firewood for energy. The region also has vast areas of environmentally valuable forests and savannas. It has technical opportunities to produce crops better but faces challenges from high rainfall variability and climate change. [Fall 2015, Fall 2016]
An in-depth exposure to topics in conservation biology emphasizing the application of scientific concepts to our understanding of the problems that threaten endangered species and ecosystems. Topics include island biogeography, population genetics and viability, landscape ecology, reserve design, and endangered species recovery. To a lesser degree, this course will address some of the political, economic, and cultural aspects of conservation. [Spring 2013, 2014]
EEB-ENV 341: Water, Savannas & Society: Global Change & Sustainability in Africa’s Hallmark Ecosystem
Savannas have played an important role in shaping human societies, including our evolution as a species. That role will grow, as savannas must be increasingly harnessed to meet growing demands for food, fuel, and fiber. Starting with a primer on savanna ecology, this course will examine the ecological and societal issues surrounding our use of African savannas. A key focus will be to explore tradeoffs between agricultural development, ecosystem services (e.g. carbon storage), biodiversity, and existing livelihoods, how those tradeoffs can be optimized to achieve sustainability, and how climate change will complicate such efforts. [Fall 2012, Fall 2013]