How to Change the World is an online course offered by Wesleyan University.  The course has its origins in Mashable's "Social Good Summit" held at the 92nd Street Y.  The summit brought together some of the world's most creative entrepreneurs, writers, academics and political leaders to discuss ways innovative thinking and technology can address pressing global challenges.

 

Beginning from talks, panels and conversations from the summit, the course added lectures, on-line discussion groups, hangouts and readings to explore the issues in politics, technology and the environment in broader academic and historical contexts.  

 

How to Change the World examines how we can develop "social goods" and use them to create networks of progressive change.   Classes will address the following topics:  Poverty and Philanthropy; Climate Change and Sustainability;  Women, Education and Social Change; Social Networks, Education and Activism.

 

Each week will be structured along the following questions: 1. What do we know? 2. Why should we care? 3. What can we do?   Five writing assignments are required on the following topics.

 

Writing Assignment #1

Tragedy of the Commons or What is a Social Good?

 

Writing Assignment #2

Addressing Extreme Poverty

 

Writing Assignment #3

Changing the Climate Debate Focus

 

Writing Assignment #4

Raising Awareness on Actions to Lower Child Mortality

 

Writing Assignment #5

Building Capacity for Girls and Women

 

 

Learning Goals

 

At the end of the class students should have a clearer understanding of these global issues, and they should develop strategies for working with others to begin to address them.  The goal of the course is simple and bold: to put together the facts, the energy and the actions to make a real difference in addressing some of the major problems confronting the world today.

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