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Systems Thinking and Sustainability

Once you start to see the events of the day as parts of trends, and those trends as symptoms of underlying system structure, you will be able to consider new ways to manage and new ways to live in a world of complex systems.     Donella Meadows (2008)


This course provides the student with an introduction to systems thinking within the context of sustainable development and specifically causal feedback loops and the need for a change of perspectives in a globalized, post-pandemic world facing climate change. It examines systems thinking theory in a fun and dynamic manner with practical examples taken from everyday life to gain a greater understanding of systems dynamics. The student will learn to discover, understand and appreciate the systems of which we are part, how we function (or don’t) within them as individuals and as a society, and hone our skills so our involvement in systems dynamics – whether at the personal, international or global levels – can contribute to more positive outcomes over time. The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) included in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted in 2015 at the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly provide the backdrop to the course.


SUSD 3150




Fall, Spring, Summer II


3 credits / 48 contact hours


Contact us for information on course tuition




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