GCC 3017: World Food Problems: Agronomics, Economics and Hunger

3 CreditsHonorsGlobal Perspectives

This course provides a multi-disciplinary look at problems (and some of the possible solutions) affecting food production, distribution, and requirements for the seven plus billion inhabitants of this planet. It is co-taught by a plant geneticist (Morrell) and an economist (Runge) who together have worked on international food production and policy issues for the past 40 years. Historical context, the present situation and future scenarios related to the human population and food production are examined. Presentations and discussions cover sometimes conflicting views from multiple perspectives on population growth, use of technology, as well as the ethical and cultural values of people in various parts of the world. The global challenge perspective is reflected in attention to issues of poverty, inequality, gender, the legacy of colonialism, and racial and ethnic prejudice. Emphasis is placed on the need for governments, international assistance agencies, international research and extension centers, as well as the private sector to assist in solving the complex problems associated with malnutrition, undernutrition, obesity, and sustainable food production. Through a better understanding of world food problems, this course enables students to reflect on the shared sense of responsibility by nations, the international community and ourselves to build and maintain a stronger sense of our roles as historical agents. Throughout the semester students are exposed to issues related to world food problems through the lenses of two instructors from different disciplinary backgrounds. The core issues of malnutrition and food production are approached simultaneously from a production perspective as well as an economic and policy perspective throughout the semester. This is a Grand Challenge Curriculum course. GCC courses are open to all students and fulfill an honors experience for University Honors Program students.

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All Instructors

B+ Average (3.403)Most Common: A- (32%)

This total also includes data from semesters with unknown instructors.

255 students
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  • 3.70


  • 3.72


  • 3.61


  • 3.49



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