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Natural Resource Economics - ENV00044H

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  • Department: Environment and Geography
  • Module co-ordinator: Dr. Xun Zhou
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2024-25

Module summary

This module will advance the student's knowledge of how to use and apply a variety of environmental valuation and policy evaluation techniques to real-world problems surrounding natural resource economics.

Related modules

Pre-requisite modules:

Economic Principles (Yr 1)

Economics of Sustainable Development (Yr 1)

Applied Ecological Economics (Yr 2)

Enhancing Biodiversity (Yr 2)

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Semester 1 2024-25

Module aims

This module aims to equip students with the knowledge and ability to use environmental valuation and policy evaluation techniques for understanding and addressing pressing natural resource and sustainability challenges. This module will use a common global challenge, such as natural resource depletion and climate change, to act as a theme across the module to structure a balance across theory, applications, and examples. A solutions-based approach will be taken, and the assessment will be based upon a real-world style assessment whereby the students will produce a Consultancy Style data analysis report regarding a global environmental, resource, or sustainability challenge.

Module learning outcomes

  1. To demonstrate an understanding of natural resource economics

  2. To be able to apply environmental economic and econometric concepts to address global environmental, natural resource, and sustainability challenges.

  3. To demonstrate an increased understanding of the conceptual frameworks for environmental valuation and how to use non-market valuation methods.

  4. To demonstrate an increased understanding of the conceptual frameworks for causal inference and how to use policy evaluation methods.

Module content

In this module, students will learn the fundamentals of environmental valuation methods (contingent valuation, choice experiments, travel costs) as well as those for policy evaluation (regression discontinuity design, difference-in-differences, and synthetic control methods). This will be achieved using pressing natural resource topics as central themes connecting the various tools studied.


Task Length % of module mark
Consultancy Style Report 3000 words
N/A 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Essay 3000 words
N/A 100

Module feedback

Four week turn-around time on write-up. Feedback is via a written feedback sheet showing comments by markers.

Indicative reading

Harris, J.M., & Roach, B. (2018). Environmental and Natural Resource Economics: A contemporary approach, 4th edition, Routledge.

Perman R., Ma, Y., McGilvray, J., & Common, M. (2011). Natural Resource and Environmental Economics. 4th edition. Pearson.

Wooldridge, J. M. (2012). Introductory Econometrics: A Modern Approach, 5th Edition, South-Western Cengage Learning.

Champ, P. A., Boyle, K. J., & Brown, T. C. (2017). A Primer on Nonmarket Valuation. 2nd Edition, Springer.

OECD (2018). Cost-Benefit Analysis and the Environment: Further Developments and Policy Use, OECD Publishing, Paris.

Khandker, S. R., Koolwal, G. B., & Samad, H. A. (2009). Handbook on Impact Evaluation: Quantitative Methods and Practices. World Bank Publications.

McClelland, R., & Gault, S. (2017). The Synthetic Control Method as a Tool to Understand State Policy. The Urban Institute, Washington D.C.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.