Instructor: Brian Orland
office hours: 9-11, Tues, Thurs. 308 Buell Hall
please contact me via e-mail vs. phone
This course looks at different ways of evaluating the land, problems that
arise when attempting to evaluate land, and policies that may be developed
to address those problems. In part the course is about the philosophy of
evaluation -- why we do it. A second portion is devoted to methods -- how
we do it. And the third part of the class is devoted to learning some of
the tools we use to do it.
In starting to organize this class I have tried to define a hierarchy
of human values related to the environment. The order I have created here
is based on a notion of the "success" of each in being addressed by legislative
and management activities. It is ironic that they tend to "wrap-around"
in a complete loop with human health at one end and existence at the other.
The projects we do in class will mostly be done in the context of the
environmental and social conditions in East St. Louis. You will be encouraged
to attend a work weekend during the semester.
The course will meet Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:00-11:30. Generally,
on Mondays we will be in Room 325, Temple Buell Hall. Meeting times will
cover work prepared by me and by you. On Mondays we'll focus on talk and
follow the readings schedule. I hope we will rapidly move toward a discussion
format with short lectures. On Wednesdays we will do practical sessions
involving learning software, collecting information etc. where I will be
available in a lab format session. That will be held in the Room 201/202
Mumford Hall computer lab or in the DURP computer lab at 226 TBH.
Practicals and Projects:
The projects we do in class will all be done in the context of the environmental
and social conditions in East St. Louis. They will use East St. Louis
data and pose questions relevant to that setting. The work weekend will
be an opportunity to "test" some of our ideas from the class against real
conditions on the ground.. Depending on numbers in the class I will get
people to work in pairs or threes to tackle particular realms of resource
that are important in the big picture of the future of decaying cities.
Literature review (on-line search) 10% of grade
On-line bibliography (html, writing) 5%
Economic evaluation approaches (spreadsheet) 15%
Recreation Opportunity Spectrum (spreadsheet/gis) 5%
Visual Resource Assessment (gis) 5%
Visual Resource Assessment (survey) 5%
Cultural resources (gis) 5%
Suitability mapping (gis) 5%
Group report on values associated with resource of choice (html) 30%
Weekly reference submissions 10%
Classroom participation in discussions 5%
Dilapidated public housing
Urban wildlife habitat
Suburban strip malls
Floodplain development etc.
I know some of the people in the class already have formidable skills
in some of the applications we will be using. Since we have limited resources
for hands-on help with learning I am assuming the more advanced will help
tutor the less and I will assign credit for that based on feedback from
Weekly reference assignment:
One of my big concerns is that you read the material assigned each week
and be prepared to discuss it. My ability to find new and interesting
material is limited by the time I have available and by my own limited
perspective. Each week you will be required to find an article, book,
or other reference material that is relevant to the week's readings, provide
a full reference and a 100-150 word summary of what it says, and be prepared
to talk about it in class. You will submit the work electronically so
we can include it in the class webpage.
There is no text for the course. A class reader is available from Notes
and Quotes in the Johnstowne Center at John and 5th Streets in Champaign.
Some categories of environmental values:
This will be the lecture/discussion "spine" of the class, looking at
how values are operationalized and doing "practicals" with defined goals
I. Human values and some views of the environment
II. Public health and an hierarchy of environmental values
III. Economic evaluation:
IV. Social welfare aspects of environmental values:
V. The evaluation of leisure and recreation:
travel cost modeling
unit day values
VI. Visual quality evaluation:
visual absorption capability
limits of acceptable change
VII. Evaluation of cultural resources:
VIII. Existence value:
stability or growth
The saliency question:
This will be more of a "sidebar" that comes up every week as a question
where for each "value category" we consider this checklist of ways to establish
the saliency (whether it is important in a particular situation) of the
particular value and how it is done
Issues and case studies:
I. Urban and rural land conversion:
II. Pollution and degradation:
Urban forestry and land reclamation
III. The natural environment:
IV. The visual environment:
Water and air quality
The "practicals" will use topics from the framework above. The structure
is not quite right or complete yet but it is kinda close.
Library Online/Internet WWW search
Use a browser and basic search services to find and retrieve data about
issues related to land and environmental values.
Acquire and organize data etc. via the services of the library
Learn to use a discussion forum and post useful stuff -- references, text
Basic text and graphics software, use of scanner.
Create a homepage where all the semester work will be assembled and communicated.
Netscape Composer editor.
Acquire and organize material for the Internet.
Use computational abilities, charting and graphing in Excel to model and
display quantitative environmental information.
Excel and Excel Internet Assistant.
Identify resource relationships of theoretical importance to quality of
life, locate their occurences using ArcView etc., conduct evaluations and
project future changes.
ArcView and ArcExplorer, EGRETS.
Modified: 22 August 1998, Brian Orland