Alverno College Coastal Cities: The Baltic Sea

2-16 June 2013
Gdansk, Kalmar, Malmö and Copenhagen

Leadership Team
David Brooker, Associate Professor of Political Scienc
Jodi Eastberg, Associate Professor of History

Alverno College

Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin focuses on the education of women, especially women from underrepresented and underprivileged backgrounds.  There are 2700 students in our undergraduate and graduate programs, many of whom are first generation college students and who make Alverno the most racially diverse college in the state of Wisconsin.  Alverno’s internationally recognized curriculum, which features Global Perspectives and Effective Citizenship as cornerstones of our abilitiesbased curriculum, Alverno is uniquely poised to implement programs that respond to a variety of issues related to global citizenship and the environment.  Visit for more information on our students, programs, colleagues and more.

Coastal Cities Project

It is in the above context as community partner and leader in higher education, that a multidisciplinary team of faculty have developed a course around understanding global approaches to water resources and access.  As a leader in water technology and water resources, Milwaukee has been building an international reputation as a “water city”.  We believe it is important that all citizens understand they have a stake in Milwaukee’s resources and come to public debates over water rights, water pollution, water use, and water technologies from an informed stance.  Moreover, because water has been repeatedly referenced as one of the world’s most pressing and developing issues and Milwaukee sits on the edge of the world’s most abundant water resource (the American Great Lakes), it is essential that students and our community educate themselves regarding this important resource in a global context.  About Comparing Milwaukee, Lake Michigan and the Baltic SeaAdding a global perspective to the world’s water issues will allow students to understand that there are multiple approaches to managing, engaging, and thinking about one’s water resources.  In particular, being a city on a body of water shapes the communities that form there.  We believe that a unique case study for exploring the complex issues of water policy and water-based communities is found in the Baltic Sea.   The Baltic provides a multi-national case study for understanding cities’ connection to their water resources.  By studying the Baltic Sea, the various cooperative agreements around this shared resource, the very different local, regional, national, and international interventions, and simply how the coastal cities of the Baltic have responded to their placement on the sea, faculty and students will be able to develop and share a model for multiple frameworks for engaging in the policy, industry, conservation, and research of the tremendous resource they share.

Case Study Topics

Coastal Cities as Cosmopolitan Cities: Immigration and its Impact in Coastal Cities

Environment and Urban Planning: Building cities on the sea

Sharing Water: Multi-level governance, water economies and multiple stakeholders in managing, accessing, and utilizing water resources  

Aesthetics of the Coast:   Where water meets land in art, design and nature                                                                                                               

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