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14253-01 - Seminar: Environmental Ethics and Intergenerational Justice 3 CP

Semester fall semester 2019
Course frequency Every fall sem.
Lecturers Barbara Schmitz (, Assessor)
Content The central questions of environmental ethics concern the moral obligations we have towards protecting our natural environment. How can these obligations be rationally justified? What do they include? Physiocentric approaches suppose that the value of protecting our environment is not just based on human interests. In contrast, anthropocentric approaches completely explain the obligation to conserve the nonhuman nature by reference to the interests of human beings who for example have a need for an undestroyed environment as an economical ressource or as an area for their relaxation. These different approaches will be discussed in the first part of the course.
Sustainable development is aiming at the protection of the economical and ecological conditions of the good life of future generations. By serving this goal environmental ethics becomes part of an ethics concerning our responsibility for the future. In the second part of the course different readings of this responsibility will be discussed. In this context, it will also be examined in which way our obligation to protect our environment can be justified by the idea of justice between present and future generations.
Learning objectives The participants know
- different approaches in environmental ethics;
- the specific problems of intergenerational justice.
Bibliography The literature is presented at the beginning of the seminar.
Comments Note: Special course application and entry requirements!

MSD students who already have attended a similar class are supposed to contact Prof. Dr. P. Burger and determine with him a substitute. Don’t forget to inform C. Chebbi by email about your agreement.

MSD 2017
Mandatory for all students (unless the above situation applies to you).

MSD 2010
Die Anrechnung erfolgt gemäss publizierten Modulen oder mittels LC für den Vertiefungsbereich Phil.-Hist. Pflicht für alle, sei denn man hat diese LV oder eine vergleichbare schon gemacht (siehe Absatz weiter oben).

This seminar is offered by MSD, Dr. B. Schmitz holds a teaching assignment.


Admission requirements Special course application required for ALL (for details see 'course application' or 'Anmeldung'). Course application in a different way then explained ARE NOT taken into account.

Limited number of participants (25), Students of the MSD have a first priority; those of the mentioned fields of study (see list of modules) have a second priority. If you study something different you must do a master 's degree within the 'Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences'/Department of Social Sciences, and may attend the seminar in case of vacancies and former application as required.
Course application Mandatory application for ALL! Link open from 14.08.19y/noon - 04.09.19/midnight:

Login and application possible from 14.08.19/noon on. (Login button on top row right hand side of ADAM website)

NOTE: Be aware of special entry requirements. Course inscription via MOnA remains mandatory for all participants..

In case of vacancies the online application link remains open until the second week of teaching + 2 days.
Language of instruction English
Use of digital media Online, optional


Interval weekly
Date 18.09.2019 – 22.01.2020
Time Wednesday, 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Date Time Room
Wednesday 18.09.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 25.09.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 02.10.2019 12.00-14.00 --, --
Wednesday 09.10.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 16.10.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 23.10.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 30.10.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Monday 04.11.2019 12.15-13.45 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 06.11.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 13.11.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 20.11.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 27.11.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 04.12.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 11.12.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 18.12.2019 12.15-14.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Wednesday 22.01.2020 14.15-16.00 Vesalianum, Seminarraum (O2.02)
Modules Modul Grundlagenbereich Gesellschaftswissenschaften (Master's Studies: Sustainable Development (Start of studies before 01.08.2017))
Modul Kernbereich Gesellschaftswissenschaftliche Nachhaltigkeitsforschung (Master's Studies: Sustainable Development (Start of studies before 01.08.2017))
Modul: Fields: Environment and Development (Master's degree program African Studies)
Modul: Praktische Philosophie (Master's degree subject Philosophy)
Module: Complementary Knowledge in Social Sciences (Master's Studies: Sustainable Development)
Module: Core Competences in Social Sciences (Master's Studies: Sustainable Development)
Vertiefungsmodul Global Europe: Umwelt und Nachhaltigkeit (Master's Studies: European Global Studies)
Assessment format continuous assessment
Assessment details Regular attendance (mandatory), required readings, oral presentation, essay.
Assessment registration/deregistration Reg./dereg.: course registr./cancel registr. via MOnA
Repeat examination no repeat examination
Scale 1-6 0,1
Repeated registration as often as necessary
Responsible faculty University of Basel
Offered by Fachbereich Nachhaltigkeitsforschung