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The Economics of Sustainable Development

Subject content:

Part 1, How we arrived at our current position: (i) the Malthusian economy, population dynamics, and interlinkages with nature; (ii) technological innovation, the demographic transition, and industrialization.

Part 2, Where are we now: (i) study of data on technology and population, health, wealth, happiness, environment and natural resources, and inequality; (ii) alternative interpretations of the data, exemplified by for instance Gapminder and the late Hans Rosling, and Johan Rockström and the idea of planetary boundaries.

Part 3, Projecting future trends with the help of theory and data: (i) technological progress, labour supply, and economic growth; (ii) polluting emissions and the degradation of natural resources and nature, including the Environmental Kuznets Curve hypothesis; (iii) health and inequality, both between countries and individuals.

Part 4, Where we should be heading, and how to get there: (i) the role of policy with regard to the rate and direction of technological change, firms’ production choices, and household labour supply and consumption patterns; (ii) the keys to reaching the SDGs and other sustainability goals.

Course implementation:

The course uses different teaching methods to promote students’ learning and discussions through:

Lectures, literature studies, seminars and project work.

The course focuses on the following general competences:

Critical thinking, problem solving, scientific methods, oral communication, written communication.

The following components are compulsory:

Attendance at seminars and guest lectures.

Information from the course leader

A warm welcome to the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the course The Economics of Sustainable Development!

Below, you will find general information about the student account, registration for the course and other practical information.

The student account

You will need your student account to access e.g. your e-mail, Ladok and Canvas. For information regarding how to create your student account, follow this link:

Registration for the course

Self-registration for the course is done in Ladok between 2024-10-18 – 2024-11-01. Remember that you must be admitted and registered in Ladok to be able take the course. Having access to Canvas does not mean you are registered in the course and without registration, you are risking losing your place in the course. If you have been admitted to the course with conditions, you need to send your credit list to the course leader who will review it and decide if you can register. Do this as soon as possible as reviewing credits may take a few days due to the course start.

Educational support

If you are entitled extra educational support, please inform the course leader at the start of the course so that special arrangements can be made.

For educational support for an exam, see instructions in the exam registration in Ladok Student. You need to register for alternative exam arrangements no later than 10 workings days prior to the examination day. More information here:

Discontinuation of a course

If you want to discontinue the course, you should immediately notify the educational administrators at, who in turn will inform the course leader and register a non-completion of the course in Ladok after your approval. You are also able to register an early non-completion of the course (within three weeks after course start) in Ladok yourself.


You need to register for exams in Ladok. The registration closes 10 working days prior to the exam. You can find your anonymity code in Ladok Student. It's not possible to register for the exam after the deadline has passed.

On Wednesdays between 12:30-14:30 we have an exam hand out at the department (Ulls hus, 4th floor). Please remember to bring your ID-card.


Do not hesitate to contact us at if you have any questions!

Kind regards,
The educational administrators

Course evaluation

Additional course evaluations for HU0009

Academic year 2023/2024

The Economics of Sustainable Development (HU0009-20185)

2023-10-31 - 2024-01-14

Syllabus and other information

Litterature list

Economics of Sustainable Development - Literature

Instructors: Rob Hart and Pedro Naso

November - January 2023

The following literature will be used during the course. References marked with an asterisk are recommended but not required reading. Note that for some of the topics lecture notes – which will be published at the beginning of the course period – will also be essential reading.

Module 1 – Malthus

Module 2 – Technological Progress

Module 3 – Data Knowledge

Module 4 – Data Interpretation

Module 5 - Social sustainability, focus on inequality, population, and health

Module 6 – Environmental sustainability, focus on natural resources, pollution, and biodiversity

Module 7 – Economic sustainability, focus on work, consumption, and (de)growth

**Module 8 – Policy **

Course facts

The course is offered as an independent course: Yes The course is offered as a programme course: Political Science - Sustainable Development (BSc) Tuition fee: Tuition fee only for non-EU/EEA/Switzerland citizens: 27500 SEK Cycle: Bachelor’s level (G1F)
Subject: Sustainable Development
Course code: HU0009 Application code: SLU-20135 Location: Uppsala Distance course: No Language: English Responsible department: Department of Economics Pace: 100%