Caribbean countries, like other Small Island Developing States (SIDS) around the world are increasingly vulnerable to the impact of climate change, and environmental hazards. These include: rising temperatures and sea levels; flooding; variability in weather patterns; and increased frequency and ferocity of hurricanes, earthquakes, floods and droughts. These disasters undermine people's livelihoods and adversely affect their ability to survive natural hazards. The development of Caribbean countries is undermined by the high cost of post-disaster reconstruction. These are opportunities for students to market their skills to relevant agencies involved in climate change, disaster preparation, and responses. This semester students will be exposed to the new climate agreement signed in Paris in December 2015 and the implications for the vulnerability of Caribbean countries.

Inequality affects the differential risks and vulnerabilities of males and females to cope with climate change and environmental hazards. These inequalities are often linked to social, economic and political differences. Mainstreaming gender in national policies and programmes can mitigate climate change and disaster-related risks for each sex. However, few Caribbean countries have the requisite knowledge and skills to conduct gender analysis and to mainstream gender in national policies and programmes. This course helps to build this critical capacity.