EAE5900 - Landscape, environment and sustainability in Italy - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment

Chief examiner(s)

Professor Nigel Tapper


Professor Nigel Tapper

Unit guides




APG4281, ATS3281, EAE3900


An application is required to enrol in this overseas unit.


This field-based unit is taught in the National Park/World Heritage Area of Cinque Terre on the Italian Riviera. Identified by UNESCO as an environment and cultural landscape worth preserving, the region is under immense pressure due to climate change, rural depopulation, abandoning of agricultural lands, landscape instability, and burgeoning tourism. The unit provides unique opportunities for interaction with staff of the National Park and various local and national authorities through guest lectures. During the time spent on the Cinque Terre students will explore the environment through numerous field trips. Whilst on site, students will complete an independent research project investigating the challenges of sustainably integrating tourism and agricultural objectives, while minimising negative environmental and cultural impacts.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Evaluate the range of complex environmental, social and economic interrelationships that shape the Cinque Terre and be able to differentiate a cultural landscape from a natural landscape;
  2. Propose and justify a solutions-based research project demonstrating an understanding of sustainability in the context of a region of truly global significance;
  3. Design a research proposal demonstrating an understanding of field-based techniques of survey, analysis and presentation of results;
  4. Reflect upon and critically analyse personal and professional development with reference to addressing problems of sustainability in a region of global significance.
  5. Execute a collaborative research project that shows a critical understanding of the real-world challenges associated with addressing sustainable development;
  6. Communicate a solutions-based approach in a clear and coherent way that is effective for the purpose and the intended audience.


Pre-departure project proposal 15%

In-field project presentation: 10%

Field studies journal: 20%

Research report: 55%

Workload requirements

  • 3 2-hour pre-briefing workshops prior to departure
  • 7.5 days intensive located in the Cinque Terre, Italy involving lectures, tutorials and fieldwork
  • 3 days lectures, discussion, workshops (mornings)
  • 4 days directed project work
  • Presentations on final morning
  • Post-trip independent work on journal and research project

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

S6002 Master of Environment and Sustainability