GY475      Half Unit
Issues in Environmental Governance

This information is for the 2023/24 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Richard Perkins, Dr Eugenie Dugoua and Prof Michael Mason


This course is available on the MSc in Development Studies, MSc in Environment and Development, MSc in Environmental Economics and Climate Change, MSc in Environmental Policy, Technology and Health (Environment and Development) (LSE and Peking University), MSc in Environmental Policy, Technology and Health (Environmental Economics and Climate Change) (LSE and Peking University), MSc in Local Economic Development, MSc in Regulation, MSc in Risk and Finance and MSc in Urban Policy (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

This course cannot be taken with GY465 Concepts in Environmental Regulation or GY420 Environmental Regulation: Implementing Policy.

The number of students that can be accommodated is limited. If the course is over-subscribed, places will be allocated at the Department’s discretion and a waiting list may be created. For further details, please contact your relevant Programme Coordinator.

Course content

This Winter Term half unit is designed to highlight key issues in environmental governance. A basic premise of the course is that governing sustainability transitions requires us to consider environmental decision-making and action by an increasingly diverse set of actors – including private ones. The themes covered illustrate the challenges, approaches, and tools of environmental governance by these actors: governing technological change, corporate social responsibility, sustainable finance, civil regulation, and international negotiations.


10 hours of lectures and 13 hours and 30 minutes of seminars in the WT.

In the Department of Geography and Environment, teaching will be delivered through a combination of classes/seminars, pre-recorded lectures, live online lectures, in-person lectures and other supplementary interactive live activities.


This course is delivered through a combination of seminars and lectures across the Winter Term.


This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Winter Term.

Formative coursework

All students are required to make one presentation on an agreed topic.

Indicative reading

While there is no one single text that covers all aspects of the course, students are advised to consult the following:


Blowfield, M. and A. Murray (2019). Corporate Responsibility: A Critical Introduction, 4th edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press

Cato, M.S. (2022). Sustainable Finance: Using the Power of Money to Change the World. Berlin: Palgrave Macmillan/Springer Cham.

Gupta, A. and M. Mason (eds.) (2014) Transparency in Global Environmental Governance, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.


Take-home assessment (100%) in the ST.

Student performance results

(2019/20 - 2021/22 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 39.6
Merit 45.8
Pass 14.6
Fail 0

Key facts

Department: Geography and Environment

Total students 2022/23: 26

Average class size 2022/23: 9

Controlled access 2022/23: Yes

Lecture capture used 2022/23: Yes (LT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Communication