Sustainable Consumption and Production in Latin America and the Caribbean Region: Approaches & Practical Tools, in development

  • Institution: UNITAR and UN Environment
  • Dates: 2 Oct – 24 Nov, 2017
  • Length and format: The course pedagogy is adapted to professionals in full-time work. Participants are provided with the opportunity to learn through various experiences:
    • absorb (read); do (activity);
    • interact (socialize);
    • and reflect (relate to one’s own reality).
  • Total number of learning hours: 32 over 8-week period (4 hours per week), including study time (2 h/week) and participation in online course activities (2 h/week).
  • Associated credits and evaluation: The course included a wrap-up and completing course assignments. Successful participants in the course will receive a Certificate of Completion.
  • Student profile: The course is geared towards high- to mid-level civil servants from Latin America and the Caribbean region, directly involved in the process of developing, implementing and evaluating policies supporting the transition towards SCP.
  • The target group includes:
    • Civil servants in national ministries, provincial departments and local authorities
    • Environmental managers in the private sector, e.g. engaged in SCP projects
    • Representatives from civil society organizations
    • Academia representatives and researches
    • Other individuals engaged in policy processes
  • Background on teacher(s): The course is moderated by a number of high qualified international experts with vast knowledge and experience in the area of SCP. Throughout the course, learners have the opportunity to consult with the Moderator, via the forum “Questions to the Moderator”, where direct inquiries related to the content of the course can be posted.Furthermore, the Course Moderator promotes participation and interaction among the students, by actively facilitating the discussions forums. He or she posts a question at the beginning of the week, follow the discussion and provide feedback to inputs by participants, and sum up the main viewpoints of the discussion at the end of the week.The Course Moderator also provides feedback on regular basis to course activities and exercises. He or she monitors, evaluates and gives personalized feedback to students with regard to their participation in the course, evaluates the SCP Action Plans submitted, as well as the overall performance in the course.
  • Course duration:32 learning hours over an 8 weeks’ period.
  • Course offered since: This is the first time that UNITAR and UN Environment are partnering to deliver this interactive e-learning course especially tailored to the context of Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • Main learning outcomes:
    1. Define the concept of SCP and explain its value for sustainable development, Agenda 2030 and its SDGs
    2. Distinguish key elements of effective policy planning to promote SCP
    3. Identify enabling conditions for mainstreaming and implementing national SCP policies and programmes, including sectoral policies and multi-stakeholder initiatives.
    4. Discuss principal challenges and opportunities for advancing SCP in national contexts
    5. Discuss global and regional SCP commitments, in particular in the context of the 10YFP.
    6. Apply SCP to a real-life policy-making context.
  • Topics addressed in the course: The course will be delivered in 5 learning modules as follows:
    • Module 1: Introduction to SCP, definition, rationale and fundamentals
    • Module 2: Designing, Mainstreaming and Implementing SCP Policies and Programmes
    • Module 3: Advancing SCP in Key Thematic Areas
    • Module 4: Sustainable cities and lifestyles
    • Module 5: Measuring progress towards SCP
    • Topics such as sustainable tourism, sustainable public procurement, life cycle thinking, among others will be addressed during the course.
  • Key reading materials:
    • UNEP (2008). Planning for change: Guidelines for National Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production. Paris: UNEP
    • UNEP (2010). ABC of SCP: Clarifying Concepts on Sustainable Consumption and Production. Nairobi: UNEP
    • UNEP (2015c). Sustainable Consumption and Production: A Handbook for Policy Makers, 2nd Edition. Nairobi: UNEP.
    • UNEP (2016a). A framework for Shaping Sustainable Lifestyles – determinants and strategies. Paris: UNEP
    • UNEP (2016b). Fostering and Communicating Sustainable Lifestyles – principles and emerging practices. Paris: UNEP

Type of assignments

For each assessment test participants will be allowed 3 attempts. In order to receive the Certificate of Completion participants need to pass 4 out of 5 Module assessment tests with a score higher than 70%. The participants also need to achieve a result of minimum 70 % at the overall final assessment test. It is recommended that assessment test is taken in conjunction with their corresponding module. However, recognizing the existence of different learning paths and the professional occupation of most participants, the assessment test will remain open online until the end of the course.

Applied SCP Action Plan and Peer Review

The case study will take the form of a “SCP Action Plan” and should be 3-4 pages long and respect the following
set of characteristics:

  • Address a specific issue/problem/challenge
  • Have clear objectives and expected results;
  • Comprise specific measures/activities;
  • Contribute to advancing SCP in a real world context.

In addition, each course participant should prepare 2 peer-reviews of “SCP Action Plans” posted by other
participants. Peer-reviews should have a length of approximately 1 page.

All submitted “SCP Action Plans” will receive individualized feedback from the Course Moderator within a two
week period following the end of the course.

Overall Participation

The overall participation in the discussion forums and other interactive activities will be assessed by the Course
Moderator and the UNITAR team at the end of the course. A record of active participation is a mandatory
requirement for successful completion of the course. Regular participation can also compensate insufficient
performance in other activities and/or tests.

Certificate of Completion

All successful participants will receive a Certificate of Completion by UNITAR. In order to receive the Certificate
participants need to:

  • Pass 4 out of 5 Module assessment tests (min. 70 %). Pass the overall assessment test at the end of the course (min. 70 %).
  • Participate actively in the discussion forums
  • Submit a SCP case study “SCP Action Plan” of 3-4 pages, and provide 2 peer-reviews of 1 page.

The Certificate of Completion will be sent out to successful participants within one month of the course endin

Innovative approaches

The case study makes this edition a full-participatory and innovative course. The case study consists of the development of a “SCP Action Plan” by participants that applies the SCP concept to an existing situation in a specific country, region, city, sector, organization, business, professional setting, etc. In developing a SCP Action Plan, participants are encouraged to take into account the learning materials provided throughout the course. By developing a SCP Action Plan, participants identify a concrete problem context and relevant issues in a specific sector, and define appropriate measures, resources and means of implementation. Thus, this applied case study makes a practical link between participants’ professional settings, sector of employment, interests and priorities, and the application of SCP.

Each case study will be peer-reviewed by two other course participants. It is therefore important that participants meet the deadlines for this course component.

Student feedback

  • “Extremely important topic for today’s day and age, not only for my professional work but also in my personal
  • “Very relevant for understanding the SCP instruments available to policy makers.”
  • 100% would most likely use the information acquired during the course
  • 97% stated they would recommend the course to a colleague