UCL Global Citizenship Programme


Power to the Planet! Policymaking for the People and the Environment

Finding solutions to the world’s critical challenges

Power to the Planet! Policymaking for the People and the Environment is open to all undergraduate and taught postgraduate UCL students. 

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Why a strand about policymaking?

The world faces an ever-growing array of environmental and social problems. Each has its own causes, impacts and complicating factors. The potential solutions are equally complex; long-term success is never guaranteed and unintended consequences often result in an entirely new set of issues. Understanding the policymaking process – who is involved, the factors that influence it, the challenges that have to be overcome – is key to finding effective, sustainable solutions.

Who can participate?

The strand is open to all undergraduates and taught postgraduates. You will be divided into groups of around twelve students from different departments and at different stages of their degrees. Each group will be guided by a navigator, who will advise you on your research projects and strand outputs.

Working with external partners

The highlight of the strand is the opportunity to spend a day working with an external policy partner. This could be a government department, local council or campaigning body. Each partner will have a specific problem that they would like your help in addressing. By joining this strand, you have the chance to make a real difference to the lives of people in the community. During the day, lunch will be provided so that you have the opportunity to network with every external partner that is involved in the strand. A media group, trained by an experienced film-maker, will produce a film recording the day’s events.

Participants in this strand will also be able to apply for internships with some of the external partners. More information about these will be available in the spring. Please note that these internships are only open to students on this strand and will only be available in 2019.

What to expect

Your typical day will begin with a session led by experts in different aspects of policymaking, such as the role of scientific advisors, economic policy tools and the enforcement of policies. These will be a mix of lectures and group discussions and activities.

The afternoon will involve tutorials and project work. The tutorials will give you the opportunity to explore some of the issues raised during the morning sessions in more detail. For your project work, you will develop a research project based on an environmental problem in another country. It will be up to your group to decide what issues to focus on and how to present your findings to the rest of the strand. 

The programme will also include a film screening, a workshop on environmental activism and skills sessions. Everyday will run from 10:00-16:00.

If you would like more information about the strand, please contact Dr Rob Amos.