Environmental Economics

Course: CMM 05 / CRD 05

Instructor: Dr. David Cook

Course Catalog Description

About the Course

The course introduces students to the basic principles of sensible utilization and preservation of environmental goods from the neoclassical perspective of environmental economics. It explores the main ways in which the market fails when it comes to the environment, discussing the pros and cons of different economic instruments for correcting these distortions. The course focuses on the topic of cost-benefit analysis, both from the small-scale perspective of projects and large-scale issues such as the tackling of climate change. Students are introduced to the different techniques that environmental economists apply when they endeavour to value the environment and changes in its quality.


David is currently a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Iceland. His research focuses on the interconnections between economies, human well-being and sustainability, with a particular focus on the valuation and management of ecosystem services in the Arctic. He is also employed by the University of Iceland as a lecturer in Environmental Economics. In 2018, he completed his PhD in Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Iceland. His project focused on the development of an economic model for evaluating the environmental costs of utilising geothermal energy. 

"Students at UW are always enthusiastic and keen to explore and engage with the course concepts, regardless of their previous level of experience in economics – they need no encouragement to commence critical thinking."