ESC-30108 - Blue Economy: sustainable futures with an ocean focus
Coordinator: Adam Moolna Tel: +44 1782 7 34115
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 6
Credits: 15
Study Hours: 150
School Office: 01782 733615

Programme/Approved Electives for 2023/24


Available as a Free Standing Elective






Barred Combinations


Description for 2023/24

Global political and economic interest in development of ocean and coastal spaces is evident with widespread adoption of Blue Economy approaches at national and regional policy levels. Typically framed as ┐sustainable┐ economic development, the Blue Economy presents the opportunity for a paradigm shift reconciling conflicts and contradictions in sustainable development for a central message of prosperity enhanced (rather than impeded) by environmentally and socially responsible principles. Politicians and policymakers, however, need to reconcile conflicts and contradictions across the complex interplay of economic development, social progress, environmental sustainability, biodiversity conservation, and climate change action. In this module, we evaluate our ultimate goals for a sustainable future and the opportunities and challenges of the Blue Economy.

Students will develop a critical understanding of key sustainability concepts and the interplay of economic development, social progress, environmental sustainability, biodiversity conservation, and climate change action through an ocean-focused perspective. The ┐Blue Economy┐ has become a key phrase, with ambiguous meaning, in policy and practice for ocean- and coastal-focused ┐sustainable┐ development and exemplifies many broader sustainability challenges. Studying these will develop critical evaluation and arguments skills transferable across environmental and geographical scholarship and professional practice.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Critically evaluate the scope, contradictions, challenges and solutions of key approaches to sustainable coastal and ocean focused economic development: 1,2
Demonstrate advanced information literacy skills in evaluating evidence, debates and conceptual arguments from the literature: 1,2
Integrate evidence and concepts from different academic disciplines and show interdisciplinary practice in assessing sustainable development debates: 1,2
Communicate an evidence-based persuasive narrative evaluating key aspects of the Blue Economy in both written and oral presentation forms: 1,2

Study hours

16 hours lectures
6 hours workshops
128 hours independent study and completion of assessments
For indicative purposes, anticipate 8 hours independent study per week of work towards assessments and activities or readings suggested from the lectures and workshops (96 hours). This leaves 32 hours for additional independent study across teaching weeks, at weekends, over the Christmas vacation, and when assessment deadlines are approaching.

School Rules


Description of Module Assessment

1: Literature Review weighted 70%
Literature review on a focused topic within the Blue Economy literature
3,000 word literature review evaluating the context, issues and solutions for one focused topic within the Blue Economy literature

2: Oral Presentation weighted 30%
Recorded oral presentation on a focused aspect of the Blue Economy
Video recording of an oral presentation using visual aids to evaluate a focused aspect of the Blue Economy (approximately 10 minutes +/- 90 seconds)