This course was developed as part of the Open Education for a Better World Project (OE4BW). OE4BW is a program that enrolls mentees from all over the world to, under a guidance of internationally recognized mentors, develop and implement Open Educational Resources (OERs) based on the UNESCO Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
UNESCO believes that education is a human right for all throughout life and that access must be matched by quality. It provides a global and regional leadership in education, strengthens education systems worldwide and responds to contemporary global challenges through education with gender equality an underlying principle.
The purpose of this course is to provide students with a systematic introduction to basic economic concepts and issues as they related to food industry. The process requires an understanding of the microeconomics and macroeconomic forces influencing the decisions of producers and consumers.
We will go over basic economic theories that can be applied to study the issues in agricultural economics. Topics in this course will include supply and demand of food, food production function, both under perfect and imperfect competition as well as an introduction to behavioral economics. This course will be designed to introduce the analytic tools commonly employed in the study of the economics of food and agriculture. Microeconomics coverage will also address the concepts in natural resources such as the tragedy of the commons and externalities. The main focus in all the sections will be on the environment and health.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a call for action by all countries – poor, rich and middle-income – to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. They recognize that ending poverty must go hand-in-hand with strategies that build economic growth and address a range of social needs including education, health, social protection, and job opportunities, while tackling climate change and environmental protection.
How do SDGs relate to this course and economics?
In this course we will include and discuss the following 3 SDG goals:
Each topic in each module will be connected to the relevant SDG goal(s) above.
What to expect in this course?
The course will first introduce you to some basic tools and terminology used in economics. This is a very important module, since it will enable you to understand and critically think about all modules that follow in this course.
We will then use these skills to discuss in more details the issues related to food production and consumption, environmental economics and health economics.
Each module will provide your with a number of reading assignments related to each topic.
At the end of the each module you will be able to take a short quiz to test your understanding and knowledge of the material.
In addition, you will be asked to think more carefully how does the material covered in the module relates to SDGs.