Singapore University of Social Sciences

Sustainable Development for Social Well-Being

Sustainable Development for Social Well-Being (CSD510)


CSD510 Sustainable Development for Social Well-Being will analyze the impact of sustainable development on social well-being in terms of issues, impacts, root causes and solutions. Different aspects and perspectives of sustainable development are critically explored, including the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. The module will examine how social well-being is constructed, measured and interpreted. This includes comparing and analyzing Gross Domestic Product (GDP), Gross National Happiness (GNH) and other quantitative and qualitative instruments. Students will gain an understanding of how development policies and processes at the macro level impact on local communities. These macro-level processes include globalization, industrialization, trade, population trends, informal economies and economic externalities. The course will deep-dive into key environmental and social sustainability issues such as climate change, resource depletion, planetary limits, poverty, inequality, social stratification and mobility. The module will examine investments in and returns from social provisioning and development, policy levers and trade-offs from the government’s perspective, role of corporations particularly in less-developed countries, social participation of institutions and community organizations, and the value of leadership and coordination across the different stakeholders.

Level: 5
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY JAN


  • Theory and practice of social wellbeing
  • Sustainable development: research and policy perspectives
  • Sustainable Development Goals and leadership
  • Globalization, impact on development and informal economies
  • Inequality: analysis, causes and solutions
  • Population growth: bane or boon?
  • Climate change, pollution and biodiversity loss
  • Growth, decoupling and planetary limits
  • Investments in and returns from social development
  • Policy levers and trade-offs
  • Digitalization and bridging the digital divide
  • Role of the private sector, Institutions, community participation

Learning Outcome

  • Analyze different perspectives, contexts and models of sustainable development.
  • Compare and assess different definitions of social well-being, including their advantages and limitations
  • Examine the relationship between macro policies/processes and community participation/impact, particularly how concepts and models of sustainable development have causal impact on social well-being
  • Evaluate root causes and impact of global social sustainability issues such as inequality, poverty, social stratification and mobility, climate change, resource depletion, pollution & biodiversity loss
  • Develop policy formulation perspectives in terms of how government, corporations and communities complement one another and resolve areas of conflict, so as to achieve positive outcomes in social development and well-being.
  • Synthesize a comprehensive grounding on the scope and frameworks of sustainable development, and apply to practical situations and contexts
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