Twin Cities campus
 
Twin Cities Campus

Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy Minor

HHH Administration
Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Student Services, Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, 301 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-624-3800; fax: 612-626-0002)
  • Program Type: Graduate minor related to major
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2018
  • Length of program in credits (master's): 9
  • Length of program in credits (doctoral): 12
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
The graduate minor in Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy (STEP) provides students with the skills and knowledge to study public issues arising at the intersection of science, technology, environment and society that shape economic development, environmental sustainability, human health, and well-being. The STEP graduate minor is designed to facilitate a cohort experience through the required survey course, PA 5711, additional coursework offered by STEP and STEP-affiliated faculty, and opportunities outside of the classroom through the Center for Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy (CSTEP). Students pursuing the STEP minor are strongly encouraged to participate in the activities of CSTEP, particularly the regular STEP Feedback and Research (STEP-FAR) seminar.
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
The preferred undergraduate GPA for admittance to the program is 3.00.
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted.
Up to 3 credits may be taken on an S/N grade basis. All other courses must be completed with grades of B or better. Specific coursework is chosen in consultation with the student's minor adviser or director of graduate studies.
Required Course
PA 5711 - Science, Technology & Environmental Policy (3.0 cr)
Environmental Systems Thinking
Take 3 or more credit(s) from the following:
· PA 5712 - Science to Action: All Paths (1.5 cr)
· PA 5715 - Survey of Current Issues in Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy (1.5 cr)
· PA 5722 - Economics of Natural Resource and Environmental Policy (3.0 cr)
· PA 5741 - Risk, Resilience and Decision Making (1.5 cr)
· PA 5742 - Interdisciplinary Environmental Study: Practice and Design (1.5 cr)
· PA 5743 - Acara Impact Venture Launchpad - Moving Your Idea to Impact (1.5 cr)
· PA 5752 - Material-Energy Flows for a Sustainable Society (3.0 cr)
· APEC 5721 - Economics of Science and Technology Policy (3.0 cr)
Focus Area
Take 3 or more credit(s) from the following:
· PA 5721 - Energy and Environmental Policy (3.0 cr)
· PA 5723 - Water Policy (3.0 cr)
· PA 5724 - Climate Change Policy (3.0 cr)
· PA 5731 - Emerging Technologies and Society (3.0 cr)
· PA 5751 - Urban Infrastructure Systems for Sustainable and Healthy Cities (3.0 cr)
Program Sub-plans
Students are required to complete one of the following sub-plans.
Students may not complete the program with more than one sub-plan.
Masters
Doctoral
 
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PA 5711 - Science, Technology & Environmental Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Interplay of science, technology, the environment, and society. Approaches from across the social sciences will cover how science and technology can create new environmental pressures as well as policy challenges in a range of spheres from climate change to systems of intellectual property and international development.
PA 5712 - Science to Action: All Paths
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Understanding best practices for translating science to action for the common good, integrating action across multiple sectors: i.e., coordinating action by communities, government, for-profit, non-profit/NGO and academia. Case studies and theories are discussed to address societal grand challenge topic.
PA 5715 - Survey of Current Issues in Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Current topics in science, technology, and environmental policy. prereq: Grad or instr consent
PA 5722 - Economics of Natural Resource and Environmental Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01860 - ApEc 5651/PA 5722
Typically offered: Every Spring
Public policy associated with natural resource use and environmental protection. Develops/applies economic concepts/methodologies/policy mechanisms. Principles of environmental/resource economics. Issues related to renewable/nonrenewable resources and environmental pollution. Focuses on scientific/political aspects of policy. prereq: [Intermediate microeconomics, intermediate policy analysis, grad student] or instr consent
PA 5741 - Risk, Resilience and Decision Making
Credits: 1.5 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Interplay between risk analysis, decision making, and policy in the context of new and emerging technologies, environmental and human well-being, risk and resilience. Assessment methods; risk management processes, issues and methods; role/treatment of uncertainty; factors in decision making; risk-based rule making; public values; risk communication and perception. Scientific, technical, social, political, and ethical issues. prereq: Grad student or instr consent
PA 5742 - Interdisciplinary Environmental Study: Practice and Design
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Practice & design of interdisciplinary study to support environmental policy-making. Research design (models, experiments, quasi-experiments, case studies & meta-analysis) from a range of disciplines. Their integration in an overarching framework to address pressing STEP issues (e.g., climate change, food security, energy, future cities).
PA 5743 - Acara Impact Venture Launchpad - Moving Your Idea to Impact
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Introduction to design thinking, problem definition, communication, change management and leadership, non-profit and business models, and social entrepreneurship frameworks for purpose of developing idea to address environment or social problem. Presentation at end of class to panel of experts. Projects may be used in Acara Challenge competition. To register, students will submit project proposal.
PA 5752 - Material-Energy Flows for a Sustainable Society
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Material and energy flows in the context of: a) Economic and human development; b) Resource scarcity, renewability and recyclability; and c) As a source of environmental pollution. Inter-disciplinary approach, integrating core topics from environmental economics, industrial ecology, and human health risk assessment, in the context of public policy.
APEC 5721 - Economics of Science and Technology Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Economics of innovation, technical change, and research and development. Productivity measurement. Knowledge stocks, research lags and spillovers. Econometric/welfare surplus methods for evaluating economic consequences of research and development. Economics of intellectual property rights. prereq: 3001 or ECON 3101 or instr consent
PA 5721 - Energy and Environmental Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Impact of energy production/consumption choices on environmental quality, sustainable development, and other economic/social goals. Emphasizes public policy choices for energy/environment, linkages between them. prereq: Grad or instr consent
PA 5723 - Water Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01827
Typically offered: Every Spring
Sociocultural, legal, economic, and environmental forces affecting supply/use of water by individuals, sectors, and governance institutions. Historical trends; water laws in United States and internationally. Institutional structures for managing water at federal, state, and local levels. Current water-related issues/policies. prereq: Grad student or instr consent
PA 5724 - Climate Change Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Existing and proposed approaches to mitigate and adapt to climate change through policies that cross scales of governance (from local to global) and impact a wide range of sectors. Exploration of climate change policy from a variety of disciplinary approaches and perspectives, emphasizing economic logic, ethical principles, and institutional feasibility. How policy can be shaped in the face of a variety of competing interests to achieve commonly desired outcomes. Students develop a deep knowledge of climate change in particular countries through a team final project. prereq: Intro microecon (such as Econ 1101 or equiv)
PA 5731 - Emerging Technologies and Society
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Legal, public policy, social, economic, and ethical implications of emerging technologies (such as nanotechnology). Perspective of stakeholders (federal agencies, public, industry, environment, international organizations) and public policies. Statutory objectives/regulatory. Diversity of policy problems. Research methodologies. prereq: Grad student or instr consent
PA 5751 - Urban Infrastructure Systems for Sustainable and Healthy Cities
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Summer
Study social actors, engineered infrastructures/natural systems as they, together, shape health/sustainability outcomes for cities. Understand role of infrastructure design, planning, policy in sustainable cities. Learn sustainability systems concepts, local-to-global linkages, inter-disciplinary, inter-cultural skills. prereq: Grad student or instr consent