URBAN WILDLIFE CONSERVATION {ACADEMIC WRITING SEMINAR •DUKE UNIVERSITY • 3 SECTIONS}

            What happens when wildlife and human development collide? Can cities function effectively while also protecting and conserving wildlife? Through seminar-based discussions, research, and writing projects, we will examine the challenges to conserving wildlife in urban areas through case studies like mountain lions in Los Angeles, wild boars in Berlin, and baboons in Cape Town. We will also evaluate the policies and practices that governments, researchers, and non-profit organizations devise to reduce human-wildlife conflicts in cities.

             Our course materials will come from environmental science, wildlife conservation, and urban ecology journals and books, popular magazines, films, and podcasts. You will learn to use writing as a way to process information and explore ideas and to write academic papers that follow scientific conventions. Writing assignments will include two short papers in the first half of the semester that will enable you to respond to real-word examples of animals and humans coexisting and clashing in urban landscapes. In the second half of the semester, you will collaboratively research a case study and propose a solution to this urban wildlife conservation challenge. Throughout the semester, you will also take part in a fundamental element of academic writing, the peer-review process, by reading each other’s work and providing feedback for revisions.