University of Technology Sydney

16006 Introduction to Resilient Development

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2023 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Design, Architecture and Building: School of the Built Environment
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:

Undergraduate

Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.

Description

The subject investigates urban resilience and the sustainability challenges faced by global cities, and more specifically by the City of Sydney and the Greater Sydney area as a demonstration of how these challenges may be considered and addressed locally. You are introduced to the concept of sustainable development and will explore the business concepts of the triple bottom line (environmental, economic, and social sustainability) and ESG (environment, social, and governance), with particular focus on how these are applied in sustainable urban planning and property development.

The causes and urban effects of global warming are discussed, as are issues relating to population growth, greenhouse gas emissions (and reduction), energy consumption (and alternative energy development strategies), air quality and waste challenges, water sensitive urban design, economic planning for resilience, and the built environment industries' responsibility to create safe places. Sustainable practices are discussed and demonstrated using national and international case studies, guest lectures, in-class/online group discussions and exercises, and, if possible, field visits. To gain maximum benefit from this class, students should attend each class session - attendance is taken via a weekly quiz available only to students attending in-person (or live online, as relevant).

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

1. Develop effective written, verbal and visual communication strategies
2. Understand the relationships among urban structure, resource consumption, and sustainability at the urban, precinct and/or building level
3. Understand the challenges and practical application of principles of environmental, economic and social sustainability to urban development at the urban and precinct scales.
4. Develop coherent criticisms of existing policies and plans using available evidence appropriately.
5. Understand the environmental risks posed by patterns of development, the strategies available to manage risk and adapt urban development patterns to mitigate risk.

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs)

This subject also contributes to the following Course Intended Learning Outcomes:

  • Effectively apply a variety of communication skills and technologies in professional contexts (C.1)
  • Develop alternative, appropriate creative solutions to built environment issues (I.2)
  • Apply planning principles in various property contexts (P.4)
  • Apply knowledge of sustainability and environmental issues in built environment contexts (P.7)
  • Engage in critical and reflective thinking in built environment contexts (R.1)
  • Source, evaluate and use information within defined parameters (R.2)

Contribution to the development of graduate attributes

The term CAPRI is used for the five Design, Architecture and Building faculty graduate attribute categories where:

C = communication and groupwork

A = attitudes and values

P = practical and professional

R = research and critique

I = innovation and creativity.

Course intended learning outcomes (CILOs) are linked to these categories using codes (e.g. C-1, A-3, P-4, etc.).

Teaching and learning strategies

?Delivery will be in weekly sessions and will include a mix of online lectures on key concepts, in-class workshops and zoom calls (as agreed by the class in Week 1), presentations by guest lectures on specialist material, and case study exploration to understand how concepts can be applied in practice. Active and reflective learning opportunities will be integrated throughout the subject via student-led discussion, small group discussion, polls, and a field visit (if possible).

We will aim to meet regularly for face-to-face workshops to discuss and apply concepts in practice-based scenarios. This may take the form of e.g. group discussions, exercises, or case study exploration. Student groups will take turns throughout the term leading a discussion based on a newspaper article related to the weekly topic(s). The complexity of resilient urban development challenges cannot be solved by a single profession or individual. To replicate how these challenges are addressed in practice, this exercise offers students the to work in groups to better understand the practical application of lecture content, and to share insights with the class. Weekly (in-class) quizzes are available only for those attending in person (unless the absence is due to an excused reason, per UTS policy, and the lecturer is advised prior to the start of class) - please bring your laptops to class so that you can take the quiz.

In weeks without face-to-face workshops, we will meet via zoom: Each zoom session will begin with a short period of 'free discussion' with classmates. During this time the lecturer will open the zoom call and allow students to interact as they normally would prior to the start of class. This will be followed by a short period of Q&A to answer questions about the lecture content and other pre-class work before moving into deeper discussions about the content and/or feedback related to assigned/online exercises. Breakout rooms may be used to facilitate deeper thinking about discussion topics and engage participation from all students. As noted with the in-class workshops, student groups will take turns throughout the term leading a discussion based on a newspaper article related to the weekly topic(s). At the end of class, there will be a quiz on the weekly content. These quizzes are available only for those attending the live zoom sessions only (unless the absence is due to an excused reason, per UTS policy, and the lecturer is advised prior to the start of class). Please note: video monitors must be turned on during the quiz session. If you are in a situation where this will be an issue - please discuss with the lecturer as soon as possible.

Pre-class work is required for all class sessions and will be clearly identified within the module as being required to be completed before class. This will include weekly video module playlists where lecture content is broken into a series of shorter videos, each focusing on one or two concepts, as well as supplemental readings, news articles, or exercises. It is critical that you attend having completed the work prior to class, as a baseline of knowledge will be assumed and built upon in the in-class discussions, in-class exercises, and workshops.

Online reference and resource materials will be provided throughout the semester, and relevant news topics that relate to subject topics will also be posted to demonstrate the relevance of the subject content. You may also follow me on Twitter (@SustainREforum) where I will post interesting and relevant-to-this-subject content.

Content (topics)

This subject provides an introduction to:

  • The physical constraints on development including landform, hydrology and ecology.
  • The causes and urban effects of global warming are discussed and analysed.
  • The nature of social and economic sustainability and resilient urban development are covered, including sustainable precinct development, sustainable transport, water sensitive urban design, sustainable energy use, and sustainable practices in national and international case studies.
  • The feasibility of alternative methods for evaluating sustainability strategies is discussed.

Assessment

Assessment task 1: Quizzes and exercises

Intent:

Each week you will be presented with a learning module discussing one component of urban resilience and its impact on planning and property. Each learning module will contain a series of videos and will often be supported with reading content such
as news article(s), research article(s) and/or industry report(s). You are expected to review the content and complete all exercises prior to class.

At the start of each class session, we will discuss the answers to the previous week's quiz questions. This will be followed by a Q&A on the new content for the week's topic. At the end of each live session (f2f or Zoom), there will be a quiz on the content for that week. There will be a total of 10 quizzes. Week 1 will be a practice quiz covering the subject outline and Week 1 content - the aim of this quiz is to ensure the technology works for everyone and to give you a sense of the types of questions we will ask. Of the remaining ten quizzes, we will drop your lowest two marks (or missed quizzes), and average the eight remaining quiz marks. The average of the best eight quiz marks will be your mark for Assignment 1.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

5

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

P.7

Type: Quiz/test
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 25%
Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Demonstrate your understanding of the components of urban resilience and its impact on planning and property decision making 100 5 P.7
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 2: Exploring an urban resilience challenge (pt 1)

Intent:

This is an individual submission that requires you to investigate an urban resilience/sustainability challenge, its trends, context, and impact, globally as well as locally in the Australian urban context. You should then select a case study city that is working to resolve the same/similar issue. The case study should be in a city overseas.

You may select any issue within the realm of urban resilience/sustainability that is of interest to you to explore in detail - it can be an area or a topic for improvement discussed in the course content, or it can be of an area or a topic that is not a part of the course content but which is of interest to you. The scale of your issue can be at the policy-level, strategy/program-level, or a physical intervention at the precinct, local government area (LGA), and/or Greater Sydney scale.

The aim of this assignment is to:

1) provide the background and contextual work that is needed to understand your issue in detail before researching your case study, and
2) to examine a case study that has attempted to address the urban resilience/sustainability challenge you identified. Your goal is to investigate the case study and identify the lessons that may be applicable to developing a Plan of Action to address the issue locally (see assignment 3).

A surface-level analysis is not sufficient. This is an in-depth assignment to help you understand one key urban resilience/sustainability challenge for Greater Sydney - as well as possible solutions that could be implemented to help address the challenge locally.

See Assignment Modules for more details.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

1, 2, 4 and 5

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

C.1, P.4, P.7 and R.1

Type: Case study
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 40%
Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Quality, clarity, professionalism & coherent structure of deliverable 10 1 C.1
Evidence of strategic thinking related to the importance of the broader global sustainability, its impact on cities globally, and in Australia. 30 2 P.4
Evidence of logical selection, assessment, and analysis of your case study, demonstrating how the sustainability issue is impacting the case study, what their solution has been, the impact of that solution, and discussion of key lessons learned that can be utilised by your POA. 30 5 P.7
Develop coherent criticisms of existing policies and plans using available evidence appropriately. 30 4 R.1
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Assessment task 3: Developing a PoA for an urban resilience challenge (pt 2)

Intent:

The aim of this assignment is to use the lessons learned from the background context research and case study (assessment 2) to develop a succinct, well-researched Plan of Action (PoA) that outlines how the urban resilience/sustainability challenge should be addressed in (or around) Greater Sydney. You should consider the lessons learned from your case study and how these might complement, supplement, or in some cases counter-act, the benefits of strategies that you seek to propose in your POA.

Your PoA may be a policy with sub-policies, a strategy with sub-strategies, a combination of policies and strategies, or a physical intervention at the precinct, local government area (LGA) or city-wide scale, targeting one key sustainability area. You should identify who the primary audience/target groups are in your Plan of Action (POA).

You should critically analyse how your PoA addresses the sustainability challenge and delivers on the desired outcomes. You need to assess, with evidence to support your claims, to what extent the PoA will deliver on outcomes, over what time frame(s), and indicate the range of resources required to deliver a successful outcome(s). This should include some suggestions related to how and when (is there a phasing of steps?) the city could implement your PoA; as such, risk assessment related to the PoA recommendations should be considered.

A surface-level analysis is not sufficient - this is an in-depth assignment focussing on the application of research findings related to your research on one key urban resilience/sustainability area.

See Assignment Modules for more details.

Objective(s):

This task addresses the following subject learning objectives:

1 and 3

This task also addresses the following course intended learning outcomes that are linked with a code to indicate one of the five CAPRI graduate attribute categories (e.g. C.1, A.3, P.4, etc.):

C.1, I.2 and R.2

Type: Presentation
Groupwork: Individual
Weight: 35%
Criteria linkages:
Criteria Weight (%) SLOs CILOs
Quality, clarity, professionalism & coherent structure of deliverable. 20 1 C.1
Evidence of logically structured argument in the development of a plan of action (POA) for the CoS, based on lessons learned in the case studies. 40 3 R.2
Understand the challenges and practical application of principles of environmental, economic, and social sustainability to urban development at the city and precinct scale 40 3 I.2
SLOs: subject learning objectives
CILOs: course intended learning outcomes

Minimum requirements

Please note, students must adhere to UTS policy related to excused absences.

The DAB attendance policy requires students to attend no less than 80% of formal teaching sessions (lectures and tutorials) for each class they are enrolled in to remain eligible for assessment. Attendance will be taken weekly (via quiz participation) and it is the student's responsibility to appropriately file paperwork related to illness, requesting extension, etc. in accordance with UTS policies.

In the event that the lecturer is unable to attend a face-to-face class session due to Covid, every effort will be made to offer the class session via zoom during the scheduled class time. Similarly, for students who are unable to attend class due to a positive Covid test or other UTS-accepted excused absence, a zoom link will be provided so you can attend remotely. To qualify for remote access, you must communicate with the instructor in advance of class via email to receive the link to the zoom session. Our classroom does not have recording capabilities, so no recordings beyond pre-recorded lectures will be made available.

Recommended texts

Bullivant, Lucy. 2012. Masterplanning Futures. London and New York : Routledge.

Wilkinson, S., Sayce, S and Christensen, P. 2015. Developing Property Sustainably. London: Routledge.

Other resources

Recommended readings and lecture resources will be posted on UTS Online at the commencement of the first class and as the subject progresses through the semester.