Course A.2: Key elements for addressing the global dimension of engineering

Academic Coordinator

Dr. Jordi Peris, professor at the Universitat Politècnica de Valencia

Course Overview

As was discussed in depth in Course A.1, the practice of engineering involves much more than the mastery of subjects. In engineering design, non-technical factors and interactions can be just as significant as the technical. This is especially true when considering engineering from the perspective of international development work. 

This course will provide participants with an overview of “international development” in its’ multitude of forms. The first three sessions will introduce new conceptions of development and provide a framework by which more specialized concepts of “sustainable” and “human” development can be understood. Following this, the sessions will discuss theories and ideas such as gender, civic participation and citizenship, and analyze how these related to configurations of development discussed earlier. 

All discussions around development will relate the participant back to engineering - what role does technology play in facilitating or contradicting ideas about development discussed within this course? When discussing specific ideas such as gender and citizenship, the participant will be given the opportunity to reflect on the relationships between these and engineering practice, and discuss the differences or similarities between development. 

Learning Outcomes

1. Analyse and examine critical debates on contemporary development practice, especially where these relate to engineering.

2. Discuss the relationship between ideas such as citizenship and gender to development practice. Reflect on how these same ideas are represented in the engineering profession. 

Sessions and authors

1.    New visions on development and cooperation 

2.    The capabilities approach to human development 

3.    Sustainable development  

4.    Participation, governance and citizenship  

5.    Gender perspective 

It should take approximately 20-25 hours to complete, including readings, assignments and activities. 

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