HIST 1471: CENTRAL EURASIA WATER PAST: CLIMATE CHANGE IN THE PREINDUSTRIAL ERA
INSTRUCTOR: Aziza Shanazarova, UCIS Postdoctoral Fellow
This course will introduce students to debates around the very constitution of "Central Asia” as a set of topographical markers (the Aral Sea Basin); as a set of five post-Soviet nation-states; as a larger geographic expanse that stretches from southern Russia to northern China); as a distinct site of recurrent environmental challenges (desertification, cotton production, irrigation); and as a cultural field of nomad and settler cultures. Relying on an interdisciplinary selection of key texts, the course lays the groundwork for a later, more in-depth examination of two core assertions for the region: 1) water is power; and 2) water management determines, for better or worse, human mobility, epidemics, geopolitical rivalries and peaceful exchange, whether commercial, cultural, or technological.
This course fulfills general education requirements in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences and their previous equivalents. Students in the Swanson School of Engineering may count this course to fulfill a humanities and social science elective while students enrolled in the College of Business Administration can count it as a social science elective.
To enroll, visit Registrar's course listing in late March.
PS 1387: POLITICS OF WATER
Central Eurasia Water Present: Engineering in the Post-Industrial Empire
INSTRUCTOR: Vasili Rukhadze, Viiting Lecturer, Political Science
Given the need to highlight the contributions political science offers to our study of the Anthropocene, this interdisciplinary course investigates the role of water in the political development of contemporary Central Eurasia. As a landlocked world region, Central Eurasia provides a compelling case for the study of the political, social, and technological innovations that has yielded sites of ecological disaster and environmental frontiers of opportunity. This course guides students through the key stages of Soviet political change and its impact on the issues of Central Eurasian water culture: the collapse of tsarist governance and the withdrawal of its engineer specialists, ending its "civilizing mission"; the arrival of US experts whose modern irrigation methods inadvertently contributed to environmental degradation and economic dependence; the "shock" construction sites of the Stalin era; the misguided dam-building projects of the late Soviet period; and finally the issues relating to the international cooperation to manage the river basins connecting Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Kazakhstan.
PS 1387 fulfills general education requirements in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences and their previous equivalents. Students in the Swanson School of Engineering may count this course to fulfill a humanities and social science elective while students enrolled in the College of Business Administration can count it as a social science elective.
Central Eurasia Water Past can be counted towards UCIS credentials offered by the Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, the Global Studies Center, and the Asian Studies Center. In the Swanson School of Engineering the course can be counted as an elective for the Engineering for Humantity and Sustainability certificates offered by the Mascaro Center for Sustainable Innovation.
BUSSPP 1800: STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT OF CRITICAL WATER RESOURCES
Central Eurasian Water Future: Encounters in the Anthropocene
INSTRUCTOR: John C. Camillus, Donald R. Beall Professor of Strategic Management, Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business
This interdisciplinary course is intended to help students develop critical thinking skills in fraught socio-political environments, and gain a command of analytical techniques that support planning and strategic decision making in contexts of great complexity and extreme uncertainty. Understanding the challenge of scarce water resources—which poses an existential threat to individuals, industries, communities, countries and indeed to humanity—will be one of the three themes of the course. Approaches adopted in other countries to respond to water scarcity will be critically examined. The second theme is understanding the socio-political and economic context of Central Asian countries with the primary focus being on Kazakhstan. The third theme, drawing from the other two will frame the challenge as a “wicked problem” which is not amenable to resolution by traditional problem-solving techniques. Analytical and planning techniques that are designed to address wicked problems will be described. Teams of students will employ these techniques to develop strategies for Kazakhstan’s issues with water.
BUSSPP 1800 fulfills major requirements in the College of Business Administration and the Swanson School of Engineering. Students in the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences should consult their advisors to count this course towards their majors.
To enroll, visit Registrar's course listing in early November.
PITT SEED STUDY AWAY PROGRAMS
Thanks to a generous grant from the Office of the Chancellor's Pitt Seed Initiative, the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies will also roll out two credit-bearing study away programs in collaboration Pitt Study Abroad. These programs will add a comparative dimension to the courses in the Water in Central Eurasia cycle by inviting students to explore the global and domestic dimensions of water sustainability through field visits to policy-oriented think tanks, NGOs, and federal agencies in Washington, D.C. and Native American communities in the US.
To find out more about how you can count the Water in Central Eurasia courses towards your degrees and credentials, meet our advisors.