Western is taking a leading role in the era of climate readiness with a new graduate diploma program. Launching in fall 2024, the GDip in Climate Risk Assessment and Opportunity is a collaboration among the faculties of Engineering, Science, Social Science and Ivey Business School.
It is the first multi-disciplinary climate risk graduate program in Canada. Offered fully online, it is driven by Western’s leading experts in climate risk and climate change.
“The risk associated with climate change is one of the most critical challenges we are facing today,” said Kamran Siddiqui, Western’s vice-provost (graduate and postdoctoral studies). “This unique program will develop a new generation of professionals who can plan for risks imposed by climate change, and to mitigate its impact on business, industry and our communities.”
The graduate diploma is designed to guide learners through the uncertainty of climate change, to predict the unpredictable.
“The unpredictable nature of future climate change requires consideration of a wide range of associated risks,” says Siddiqui. “And we know past climate indicators and data no longer paint an accurate picture of the future risk that climate change poses to our infrastructure, economy and society at large.”
The program will prepare learners to navigate this uncertainty in their chosen specialization, whether it is engineering, business, science or social science.
Those working or planning to work in the business sector will learn how to build decision-making frameworks and tools from a climate risk perspective, while engineers will learn how to conduct climate risk assessments for infrastructure and building design.
In the social science specialization, the program will prepare students interested or already working in government and private sectors to achieve climate goals while addressing social inequalities. The science specialization will teach students how to design risk management and mitigation solutions to help organizations reach net zero goals.
In all specializations, training includes an integrated perspective that explores the big picture of climate risk assessment, adaptation and mitigation.
Students will be required to complete four courses to earn the diploma. These include the introductory course, Multidisciplinary Concepts of Climate Risk, that looks at how the fields of engineering, science, social science and business work together to tackle the larger problem of climate risk and climate change. After completing this course, students will break off into their respective specializations to complete the program.
The program is open to recent graduates and working professionals and applications are now being accepted for the fall 2024 session.