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Italy - A New European Master’s Degree in Environmental Management

1998, by European Environmental Management Association

The Association « EAEME » composed of fifteen European Universities from nine European countries, established in Varese, Italy, was founded in 1991 with the financial support of the European Union. The member Universities having substantial experience in post-graduate environmental training pooled their efforts, resources, and experience to create a post-graduate Master’s Degree in Environmental Management. This Master’s is a one-year full-time course starting on October 11 each year.

The Purpose of EAEME

The association EAEME considers that there is an urgent need to provide industry, trade, and public authorities with effective tools to address the environmental issues, as both E.U. and national legislation have become increasingly concerned with these challenges. This trend will accelerate rapidly in the future as environmental considerations become integrated into all policy areas.

Objectives

The aim of EAEME can be stated as:
· to achieve a high level of understanding in the disciplines contributing to environmental management;
· to train participants in interdisciplinary environmental management, in problem analysis and problem solving, in integrating institutions, operators, and methods, in a transnational and pan-European perspective;
· to develop the understanding and managerial capabilities, knowledge, and skills of the participants in view of cooperating in multidisciplinary teams of experts.
Throughout the program, transnational cooperation is encouraged by placing strong emphasis on languages, mobility, and cultural exchange.

Applicant profile

The EAEME provides training in environmental management to public administrators and managers in the public or private sector, as well as reinforcing the links between such training and research. EAEME accepts graduates with a strong motivation to start or continue a professional career in environmental managerial and policy-making positions.
Applicants should be graduates with a university degree in disciplines such as administrative science, biology, chemistry, earth sciences, economics, engineering, law, mathematics, social sciences, technology, public health and spatial planning.

The Master’s Program

Each Member University activates a "Focal Point" for a Preparatory, Basic or Application module. Depending on participants’ choice, their linguistic abilities, and EAEME possibilities, there is one Focal Point in English, one in French and one in German. The member Universities who have accepted to offer a Preparatory and a Basic Module are:
English: Athens, Torino
French: Arlon
German: Trier

The Master’s program consists of a Preparatory module of four weeks’ duration to update participants’ knowledge in particular disciplines (natural sciences, law, economics, sociology), where their current knowledge is insufficient.
A Basic module of ten weeks’ duration presents environmental management as a continuous process both in the private and public sectors and trains the participants in integrating institutions, operators, and methods in a European Perspective.
An Application module of ten weeks’ duration also aims at developing the understanding and managerial capabilities of the participants in various fields of environmental management. The participants should choose among seven Application modules, which are:
1. La gestion de l’ environnement par les administrations publiques (Brussels)
2. Management of river basins and related coastal areas (Parma)
3. Environmental management in the business community (Tilburg)
4. Evaluations relatives à l’ environnement
5. Environmental decision support systems (Verbania in cooperation with ISPRA)
6. Monetare Bewertung von Umweltschaden (Trier)
7. Environmental Monitoring and management in urbanized areas (Bologna)

Finally each participant should undertake a Project of twenty weeks’ duration. This should have a European character on managerial issues regarding interdisciplinary and cross-frontier environmental problems in the perspective of sustainable development. The project should demonstrate the adequate use of methods, theories, and concepts covered in the EAEME program. It should be supervised by a member University of EAEME and be carried out with a counterpart organization such as an enterprise, an environmental agency, and other public service research center. It is the responsibility of the participant to seek a counterpart with a theme acceptable for an EAEME project and it is the duty of the professors, members of the Academic Board, and persons in charge of the Basic Modules and/or Application modules to help participants in their research as well as to provide them with an appropriate supervisor.
The final examination takes place in Varese, Italy.

« EEMAA » and « EMASS » associations

« EEMAA » (European Environmental Management Alumni Association) is a nonprofit organization established by graduates of the EAEME European Master’s Degree in Environmental Management in 1993. Also, the Greek National Chapter of EEMAA, numbering forty members to date, has acquired a legal status since the end of January 1997, with the name « Environmental Management Scientific Society » (EMASS).

Their purpose is to:
- Maintain and enhance future professional contacts and collaboration among the alumni of the EAEME Master’s Degree program through an international network;
- Maximize the awareness and knowledge of the members by providing access to environmental management information, including key events, major publications, organizations, and institutions active in the environmental management field;
- Stimulate exchanges among EEMAA members and increase the professional potential of the members by establishing contacts with other associations and organizations;
- Promote members and their profiles to interested outside parties;
- Raise public awareness and develop concern for environmental management issues.

Comments

This is a well-organized Master’s program focused on practical management of environmental problems and the creation of links between such training and research. The theoretical analysis starts with a presentation of the general principles, methods, tools, instruments, and practices of environmental science. This analysis is applied to concrete problem situations with field studies based on environmental protection work. Participants have various disciplinary backgrounds and they learn how they can combine the objectives of environment and development following the concepts of sustainable development. The program offers an interdisciplinary approach to environmental issues.
In the Application module the participants develop their understanding and managerial capabilities in various sectors and in various fields of environmental management. They not only acquire the theoretical knowledge on environmental issues, they also learn how to handle them. Each week, case studies and examples of applications are presented by working groups, a practice that encourages student participation, exchange of experiences, contacts, and cooperation with experts from different universities and countries across Europe. My feeling as an EAEME graduate, is that this EAEME degree shows the strength and opportunities that come through coexistence and cooperation among countries, cultures, languages, disciplines, sectors, and individuals, united toward a common goal.

According to Nora Cantini, a first-year graduate "...after successfully completing the Master’s Degree, most graduates have returned to their country, although others have used their training to start careers abroad, or they have opened their own business in their countries. People are fairly evenly spread among the private, public, and non-governmental, or research sectors. Several graduates added environmental management to their previous organizations. Some have moved into consulting and program development…"

REFERENCES : Information about the financial aid fund, the receipt of application form and tuition at: EAEME Office, Via Ravasi 2, I-21100 Varese, Italy (mailing address), Tel.: 39 / 332 / 282874, Fax: 39 / 332 / 235622
KEY WORDS: Environmental Education; Training; Environmental Management; Administration; Private Sector.
LOCALIZATION: Europe
AUTHOR: Hara Brahou, c/o Yolanda Ziaka, Polis Network, P.O. Box 4, 84100 Ermoupolis, Syros, Greece, Fax: 30 / 281 / 87804, e-mail: polis@otenet.gr
NOTE: The author of this file, Chara Brahou, has been a student in this Course.
FILE DATE: 1998