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Washington and Lee University

Washington and Lee University
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BELIZE

The Economics of Tropical Seascapes

4 Credits

9 days in Belize

Professor Jim Casey

ECON 288 takes an interdisciplinary approach to environmental economics by allowing students to learn economic theory in the classroom, apply it in the field, and learn about coastal ecology by living in Belize. The primary question to be addressed in this course is how to value coastal resources -- specifically -- coral reef ecosystems.

This course will introduce techniques economists have developed to value non-market environmental resources. The two valuation techniques to be explored are (1) Choice Models CM), and (2) Contingent Valuation Method (CVM).

At the end of this course students will be able to (1) read the literature on coastal valuation and management, (2) determine for themselves the validity of environmental valuation for policy purposes and (3) more deeply understand the importance and value of environmental resources as they will have spent one week study and living in the coastal ecosystems of Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Prerequisite: Instructor consent. Preference will be given to students with more economics and environmental students coursework.

Program Fee (paid to the University): $2400. This includes international airfare, all transportation to and within Belize, accommodation, group dinners, and activities fees for the entire stay.

Estimated Additional Expenses: Beyond the fee, students should be prepared to bring approximately $300 for meals not included in the program fee (breakfast and lunch).

For further information, please e-mail Prof. Jim Casey.