First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Human and Social Sciences and Cultural Heritage
Course unit
SUP9085867, A.A. 2019/20

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2019/20

Information on the course unit
Degree course Second cycle degree in
LE0614, Degree course structure A.Y. 2008/09, A.Y. 2019/20
bring this page
with you
Number of ECTS credits allocated 9.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination PUBLIC ETHICS
Department of reference Department of Philosophy, Sociology, Education and Applied Psychology
E-Learning website
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction English
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge ROMANA BASSI M-FIL/03

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Core courses M-FIL/03 Moral Philosophy 9.0

Course unit organization
Period First semester
Year 1st Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 9.0 63 162.0 No turn

Start of activities 30/09/2019
End of activities 18/01/2020
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2008 course timetable

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
1 Commissioni a.a. 2019-2020 01/10/2019 30/11/2020 BASSI ROMANA (Presidente)
BIASUTTI FRANCO (Membro Effettivo)

Prerequisites: - good command of the English language (both passive and active knowledge);
- ability to analyse and discuss philosophical texts in the student's native language;
- a preliminary knowledge of moral theories is highly recommended.

Students with little or no background in philosophy must commit to regularly attending the course and must contact the professor for further guidance at the beginning of the course.
Target skills and knowledge: - knowledge of climate justice, its main traits, its implications and problems, its challenges and aspects open to discussion in the contemporary debate;
- ability to "close read" contemporary philosophical texts;
- ability to present philosophical problems in English with clarity and linguistic precision;
- ability to develop conceptual analysis of premises and arguments in argumentative texts;
- ability to summarize conceptual positions and to identify thesis in philosophical texts;
- ability to discuss philosophical thesis, to provide sound arguments, objections and critical evaluation;
- ability to bring into the discussion of a philosophical text references and links to the present and past philosophical tradition, as well as to problems and real life cases.
Examination methods: For attending students, the evaluation takes into account:
- attendance (with required readings to be done prior to the lessons),
- active participation to the general discussions in the classroom (ability to listen to others' positions and to interact appropriately and respectfully),
- oral presentations during the course (eventually as a group-work),
- one written paper, based on the presentation and the feedback elicited, (no longer than 8 pages, Times New Roman pt.12, line spacing 1,5, to be turned in by 7th January 2020) is going to be discussed as part of the final oral exam. (Further guidelines about philosophical/argumentative writing will be provided during the course.)
- the final oral exam.

For non-attending students the exam is oral and focuses on the readings, including also the required reading for non attending students.
Assessment criteria: Both for attending and non-attending students, both for oral presentations/exam and for the written paper the evaluation criteria are based on the assessment of:
- knowledge of climate justice, its main traits, its implications and problems, its challenges and aspects open to discussion in the contemporary debate;
- Knowledge of the debate about climate ethics and environmental ethics
- hermeneutical ability and use of appropriate terminology,
- ability of analysis (ability to identify arguments, thesis, implicit and explicit premises in a philosophical text. During the oral exam this ability will be assessed by asking the student to read and comment upon a philosophical passage of one of the required readings),
- ability of synthesis (ability to reconstruct the argumentative structure of a text, to contextualize philosophical positions within their cultural background. During the oral exam, this ability will be assessed by asking the student to present the argument supporting a specific thesis and to link arguments and thesis to wider cultural debates.)
- ability to critically discuss philosophical arguments (ability to assess the validity of an argument, to provide objections and counter-arguments, critical evaluation).
Course unit contents: The course focuses on climate justice, climate ethics and, more generally, on environmental ethics as aspects of public ethics. Henry Shue's Climate Justice (2014) will be the main reading of the course and it will provide a guideline for us to discuss a series of issues addressed in the contemporary environmental debate. Among these: environmental change and varieties of justice, equity and human rights, security rights and property rights, climate inequality, social ecology and responsibility to future generations. Part of the course will be devoted to discussing on what grounds the challenge of climate change is an ethical problem, intertwining the personal and the political sphere within climate policy and climate justice.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: Close reading of the text, conceptual analysis, frontal lessons, in-depth guided discussions, group work, presentations, reflective writing.
Additional notes about suggested reading: Attending students are required to read the prescribed reading material prior to the lesson, following the schedule shared at the beginning of the course.

Students with little to no prior philosophical background are advised to contact the professor during her office hours at the very beginning of the course for further reading guidance.

In addition to the reading materials for the course, students unable to attend will be required to also read Dale Jamieson, Reason in a dark time (2014).
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Henry Shue, Climate Justice. Vulnerability and Protection. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Stephen M. Gardiner and David A. Weisbach, Debating Climate Ethics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Hourdequin, Marion, Environmental ethicsfrom theory to practiceMarion Hourdequin. London [etc.]: Bloomsbury, 2015. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Brian Tokar, Toward Climate Justice. Perspectives on the Climate Crisis and Social Change. Porsgrunn: New Compass Press, 2014. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Jamieson, Dale, Reason in a dark timewhy the struggle against climate change failed, and what it means for our futureDale Jamieson. New York [etc.]: Oxford University Press, 2014. (Required reading for non attending students) Cerca nel catalogo

Innovative teaching methods: Teaching and learning strategies
  • Lecturing
  • Case study
  • Interactive lecturing
  • Working in group
  • Questioning
  • Concept maps
  • Students peer review
  • Reflective writing

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Sustainable Cities and Communities Climate Action