MPhil and PhD Programs in
Environmental Science, Policy and Management (ESPM)

  • For the most updated PG course descriptions, please visit here .
  • Courses listed here will be offered based on resources available in each term and year. Details about course offerings in a particular term will be announced at course registration time.

Interdisciplinary Core Course List

ENVR 5290 Climate Change: Science, Policy and Management [3 credits]

This course prepares graduate students for the development of interdisciplinary research on environmental science, policy and management through a detailed investigation of climate change issues. Based on a review of the scientific research and models that have been developed through international cooperation, students will discuss relevant approaches of atmospheric and oceanographic science and the likely consequences in terms of climate change. In addition, the various technologies of mitigation and adaptation will be surveyed, leading to a discussion of appropriate policies for managing climate change at the global or national level.

ENVR 6060 Sustainability Economics [3 credits]

This course is designed to give students an interdisciplinary understanding on the concepts of sustainability, and its contemporary trend of development. The course will cover component concepts on sustainability, its implications from resource (renewable and non-renewable) exploitation; the strength of sustainability with respect to human made or natural capitals; the assessment for sustainability; and the inter-relationships between sustainability and business, governmental policy and human communities. Exclusion(s): SOSC 5620


SOSC 5620 Sustainable Development [3 credits]

This course is designed to give students an understanding of how government and business professionals formulate policies related to the foundations of sustainable development. The course begins with an exploration into the concept of prosperity and conventional view of development in the context of environmental limitations. From that basis we will consider the economic, political and social ramifications of sustainable development and investigate the need for rejuvenation and innovation. Exclusion(s): SOSC 301E

SOSC 5770 Policy Analysis and Design for Sustainable Development [3 credits]

[Co-list with PPOL 5190] Sustainable development problems pose some of the greatest challenges for policy makers around the world, and effective policy design requires analysts with strong subject matter understanding, creativity, and the ability to incorporate diverse perspectives and approaches. The goal of this course is to advance students’ abilities to apply tools and methods, including analytical techniques and presentation skills, which are required for effective policy analysis and decision making in this area. Coursework in the course will be largely case based, and topical issues will be presented and mastered alongside different analytical skills and techniques. Exclusion(s): PPOL 5190 Background: Previous study of sustainable development and/or public policy at an undergraduate level; or professional experience in these areas


Elective Course List

ENVR 5210 Environmental Microbiology [3 credits]

The course provides an introduction to the fundamental features of environmental microorganisms and an understanding of their roles in the functioning of our ecosystems and their importance to mankind.

ENVR 5250 Environmental Economics and Management [3 credits]

The course is designed to introduce students to key contemporary concepts in environmental economics and equip them with the approaches in economics that are generally applied to analyze environmental problems and policies.

ENVR 5260 Environmental Policy and Management [3 credits]

This course focuses both on how to make and how to study environmental policy and management. It will review major theories related to the formulation of environmental policies, including government regulation and economic incentives, and discuss the types of policy measures implemented in various public and business sectors. The discussion of environmental problems and policies will focus on examples that are relevant for Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland, but will also include the experience of other countries and the debate surrounding global environmental issues.

ENVR 5310 Atmospheric Dynamics [3 credits]

The study of atmospheric motions is essential for a better understanding of the relevant meteorological phenomena. This course introduces the conservation laws for primitive equations and classical concepts in fluid dynamics, which will allow students to gain physical insight into the fundamental nature of atmospheric motions. This course is suitable for students who require the foundation of fluid dynamics for advanced study in meteorology, oceanography, atmospheric and climate sciences. Previous Course Code(s): ENVR 6040G

ENVR 5330 Environmental Geographical Information System [3 credits]

This course will cover a broad spectrum of concepts and practices in Geographical Information System (GIS). It starts with the fundamental concepts and elements in geographic science and technology. Spatial data modeling and integration methods will then be discussed followed by various geospatial analysis approaches for both vector and raster data. Cartographic principles, spatial relationships, projection and coordinate systems will be discussed in-depth. During the course, students will be introduced to contemporary GIS software and apply GIS technology support local and regional environmental planning and management. Exclusion(s): EVSM 5240

ENVR 5410 Atmospheric Chemistry [3 credits]

[Co-List with CHEM 5410] A fundamental introduction to the physical and chemical processes determining the composition of the atmosphere and its implications for climate, ecosystems, and human welfare. Atmospheric transport and transformation. Stratospheric ozone. Oxidizing power of the atmosphere. Regional air pollution: aerosols, smog, and acid rain. Nitrogen, oxygen, carbon, sulfur geochemical cycles. Climate and the greenhouse effect. Exclusion(s): CHEM 5410 Background: Basic knowledge of physical chemistry

ENVR 6040 Special Topics in Environment [1-6 credits]

Offerings are announced each term, if deemed necessary, to cover emerging topics of environmental concerns not covered in the present curriculum. Typical topics are carbon audit and management, integrated environmental management systems, air-sea interactions, Life cycle analysis: a system perspective, etc.

ENVR 6050 Introduction to Oceanography [3 credits]

An introduction to the fundamentals of physical, chemical, geological, geochemical, and biological oceanography. It unveils the mystery of the oceans including the formation of the continents, oceanic circulation, and formation of precious minerals in the deep oceans; discovers ocean resources from phytoplankton to fish. The course will lay the foundation for sustainable use of the oceans and discuss human threats such as global warming, overfishing, and coastal pollution. Background: second year Science or Engineering

EVSM 5270 Environmental Law [3 credits]

The course will provide students with the basic legal concepts which include the hierarchy of courts in Hong Kong, the difference between civil and criminal proceedings and their possible redresses or remedies available from the courts. Some important provisions of the basic environmental legislation in Hong Kong, environmental prosecution policy of Hong Kong and how to instigate a judicial review against a ministerial decision relating to the environment will also be covered in the course.

EVSM 5280 Introduction to Atmospheric Aerosols [3 credits]

Atmospheric aerosols, also known as, airborne particulate matter, are important air pollutants affecting our health, visibility, and global climate change. This course aims to provide a survey of the physical and chemical properties, the source identification, the atmospheric transformation, the sampling of atmospheric aerosols, and the determination of their chemical compositions.

EVSM 6070 Environmental Impact Assessment [4 credits]

Introduction to environmental impact assessment (EIA) and the EIA process in Hong Kong. The components of an EIA report including air, noise, water, waste management, environmental risk, ecological impact, and socio-economic impact assessments will be analyzed. Environmental law, environmental management and the importance of public participation will also be discussed. Case studies from Hong Kong will be used and comparison with EIA in Mainland China will be made. Exclusion(s): ENVS 5116

RMBI 4000B Environmental Risk Management [3 credits]

This course is designed to provide students an overview of environmental risk management regarding climate change, energy use, chemical toxicology, waste disposal, water and air pollution to human health and the environment. It focuses on the fundamental concepts of risk management and the impacts of environment risk to a corporate. It will cover the topics of types of environmental risks, risk management standards and guidelines, environment risk management strategies and implementation methods, and case studies.