Courses: 2019-20 Academic Year

Fall 2019

Duke University

Energy Law
This course provides an introduction to U.S. energy law through the examination of the legal framework governing electricity production and the extraction and use of energy sources. It is designed to provide an overview of key topics in energy law so that students develop a foundational understanding of energy law and policy. (LAW 327/ENERGY 727) 

Instructor: Amy Pickle, director, State Policy Program at the Nicholas Institute.


Water Resources Planning and Management
This course is intended to give students a first exposure to ideas of planning and management of organizations related to water resources. The course will develop a basic framework for strategic planning for environmental organizations with specific applications to water resources. It will provide some tools for forecasting future water conditions, as well as emerging tools for forecasting uncertain water conditions. Finally, it will expose students to approaches in water management, particularly adaptive management and scenario forecasting. (ENVIRON 740) 

Instructor: Martin Doyle, director, Water Policy Program at the Nicholas Institute.

Spring 2020

How External Financing Influences National Commitments to Biodiversity Conservation (Bass Connections)

Using expert interviews, a Bass Connections project team will compile and analyze a set of case studies exploring the conditions under which low- and middle-income nations finance some, or most, of their protected areas’ operating costs. The team will also examine the role of external support in either encouraging or discouraging government investment in the protected area system.

For complete information see this course on Bass Connections External link


Managing the Oceans to Solve Global Problems

This course focuses on the importance of the oceans in addressing some of the central problems facing the world, including poverty, hunger, access to energy, climate change, and biodiversity loss. It introduces students to important laws and policies that make the resources and services provided by the ocean more resilient and sustainable. Students will emerge with a basic grasp of the principal legal and policy mechanisms that support reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting the oceans and coasts through adaptation and marine resilience in the face of human drivers of change. The course explores such challenges as protecting corals, regulating fishing and pollution, and helping climate refugees. (ENVIRON 314)

Instructors: John Virdin, director of the Ocean and Coastal Policy Program at the Nicholas Institute and Steve Roady, faculty fellow at the Nicholas Institute.


Water Resources Finance 
This course covers the basics of water resources infrastructure finance with a focus on municipal water and wastewater and irrigation infrastructure. It examines four cases which include municipal water supply debt financing; alternative rate structures for revenue generation; public-private partnerships for infrastructure financing and operations; and private equity approaches to water conservation in the western U.S. leveraging water marketing opportunities for revenue generation. (ENVIRON 741)

Instructor: Martin Doyle, director of the Water Policy Program at the Nicholas Institute and professor at the Nicholas School of the Environment.


Summer 2020

Strategies for Energy, Water and Agriculture in Rural Ethiopia (Bass Connections)

The project team will fill critical knowledge gaps on the “productive use” landscape, including developing tools to identify hotspots for investment in technologies such as microgrids and solar-powered groundwater pumps to expand irrigation opportunities, and new business models for enhancing agricultural value chains in the presence of off-grid power sources. The project will support the development of a unified roadmap for integrated energy access with a focus on electrification in rural areas where agricultural production is the dominant source of income.

For complete information see this course on Bass Connections External link