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  UGEB 2182 香港環境的挑戰
Environmental Challenges in Hong Kong

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Course Description
Number of Units: 3
Lecture Hours: 3 hours/week
Course Teachers: Prof. LAM Kin Che (
Language of instruction: Cantonese
Course Outline

Hong Kong is fraught with many environmental challenges nowadays, ranging from environmental pollution to nature conservation. These challenges have brought about conflicts between different camps and caused significant difficulties in governance. This course will guide students to critically analyze these environmental challenges through a theoretical framework built upon the latest understanding of the politics of policy making and considerations in ethics, technology and economics. The course will demonstrate the use of the theoretical framework through the analysis of real Hong Kong cases, interactive tutorials, field trips, video watching and assignments. Through these various learning activities, students are expected to acquire the relevant knowledge and develop skills in critical analysis, data collection, field observation and capability in policy evaluation and problem solving.

The course will provide a comprehensive introduction to major environmental problems in Hong Kong. Students will gain the basic scientific knowledge of these issues and master a theoretical framework for analyzing these problems built upon the science of pollution and the dynamics and complexity of environmental governance. Furthermore, students will also learn the techniques to evaluate the effectiveness and feasibility of different solutions. All these will make our students environmentally conscious and responsible citizens locally and globally.


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Course Highlights

The course is made up of four components as follows:

Component 1: Environmental challenges of Hong Kong (1 week)

  • Nature and origin of environmental problems
  • Environmental awareness and public aspirations
  • Environmental governance – responsible government agencies and policy making processes
  • Different stakeholders – their values, beliefs and positions

Component 2: Theoretical framework for analyzing environmental challenges (1 week)

  • Policy cycle
  • Key considerations: technology, impacts, economics, politics
  • Science, value, belief, justice
  • Dynamics among key stakeholders

Component 3: Application of the conceptual framework (8 weeks), to analyze the latest environmental challenges under the following categories:

  • Pollution problems, such as air, water, noise and waste management
  • Nature and biodiversity conservation, and related conflicts between development and conservation
  • Development planning including the use of EIA and planning control; and/or
  • Plus any environmental issues which may arise from time to time

Component 4: Solutions to Environmental Challenges (2 weeks)

  • Windows of opportunity for intervention
  • Instruments: policy, regulation, planning and incentives
  • Considerations and methods in policy evaluation
  • Implementation and enforcement
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Please also refer to the information in the Office of University General Education and CUHK Undergraduate Handbook
(Select Curriculum and then Course Details)